Work is a positive thing for children. Those who are not familiar with the Montessori method will most often associate the word "work" with a tiring, boring, monotonous duty that one must engage in, in order to keep up with daily living or earn money. In fact, most will also attempt to organize their work schedule to have regular holidays in order to avoid, get away, or take a break from work.
As adults, work is most often thought of in a negative way. In a child's eyes, work is about energy: learning, engaging, strengthening, overcoming obstacles, becoming independent, and achieving self discipline. When children are young we can see how they deeply desire to learn to talk, walk, feed themselves, dress themselves, clean themselves, and eventually they want to do all the things we consider household 'chores'. A child's work is all about creating himself, learning independence and achieving self discipline. A Montessori environment is specifically set up to answer the call of the children; "Help me to do it myself".
All of the materials and the general principles in a Montessori environment are indeed "work" for the children, but are full of positive energy that bring about happy, positive, peaceful and self disciplined children.