This is a snapshot of a day in our Montessori home:
One day last week we cleared the table and I said, "I need you to do a work plan."
Sean filled out a sheet that I have pre-made with the subjects and blank lines for him to fill in what he is going to do in that subject. For instance: Science-- and he would fill in something like Elements Work.
I went on about my work in the kitchen, and he went outside with a magnifying glass. I went outside to check on something and saw that he was experimenting with it the magnifying glass. He was using the sunlight to burn a piece of wood, then he chose leaf, and then a dandelion. All of these materials reacted differently. (No fires were started, and I admit I said something like, "Be careful. Don't start a fire.")
When he was ready to move on from that work, he came back in and got to work on the next thing on his list. He is writing a book, and listed the characteristics of his main character. Once he was satisfied, he moved on to history. He read more about the ancient Chinese civilization, something we started on last week. When he was ready, he summarized what he had read.
I believe he practiced piano that day, and later on I took him to his first Parkour class.
My only involvement: a request for a work plan, listening to him summarize his history information, and driving him to the Parkour class.
This is a typical day for us. I try to stay out of his way as much as possible, and only give lessons when it's time to introduce something new. This is almost always language, because we are working on writing essays, and imaginative stories. Otherwise, I let him do his own thing. I put out books and materials that I hope will spark him to explore them, and I allow him to do some research on the computer. Of course he talks to me throughout the day about what he is discovering, or he asks questions about what I think about a particular bit of information.