Quotes from Montessori

January 10, 2008 at 2:47 am | Posted in Pearls of wisdom, Rantings and ravings | Leave a comment

Here are some quotes that i found on the American Montessori Society website (http://www.amshq.org) recommended by someone who responded to my previous entry (to Munir, thanks!).

“Our goal is not so much the imparting of knowledge as the unveiling and developing of spiritual energy.”
The Child in the Family :: The Clio Montessori Series, 1996 :: p. 63

“We must help the child to act for himself, will for himself, think for himself; this is the art of those who aspire to serve the spirit.”
Education for a New World :: Clio Press, 1988 :: p. 69

“Freedom is understood, in a very elementary fashion, as the immediate release from oppressive bonds; as a cessation of corrections and of submission to authority. This conception is plainly negative, that is to say, it means only the elimination of coercion. From this comes, often enough, a very simple reaction: a disorderly pouring out of impulses previously controlled by the adult’s will. To let the child do as he likes when he has not yet developed any powers of control is to betray the idea of freedom. The result is children who are disorderly because order had been imposed upon them, lazy because they had previously been forced to work, and disobedient because their obedience had been enforced.”
The Absorbent Mind :: Holt & Company, 1995 :: p. 204

(The above quote is a mouthful of a sentence but i think it’s worth digesting properly and reflected upon… have a feeling i have been enforcing too much on little boy in terms of doing household chores and keeping his toys – and yet, if i also cannot let him “do as he likes”, then what? Seems like a contradiction to me… hmmm… have to do some meditating and perhaps MORE reading on this!)

“She (the directress) understands and believes that the children must be free to choose their own occupations just as they must never be interrupted in their spontaneous activities. No work may be imposed – no threats, no rewards, no punishments.”
The Absorbent Mind :: Clio Montessori Press, 1994 :: p240

“And gradually we educators are confronted with a simple but important fact: that to help the child is not what he needs, and indeed that to give help is an impediment for the child. Therefore he must be allowed to act freely on his own initiative in this free environment.”
Four Planes of Education :: AMI, 1971 (Edinburgh and London lectures) :: p. 4

“An interesting piece of work, freely chosen, which has the virtue of inducing concentration rather than fatigue, adds to the child’s energies and mental capacities, and leads him to self-mastery.”
The Absorbent Mind :: Holt & Company, 1995 :: p. 207

 “A child is an eager observer and is particularly attracted by the actions of the adults and wants to imitate them. In this regard an adult can have a kind of mission. He can be an inspiration for the child’s actions, a kind of open book wherein a child can learn how to direct his own movements. But an adult, if he is to afford proper guidance, must always be calm and act slowly so that the child who is watching him can clearly see his actions in all their particulars.”
The Secret of Childhood :: Fides Publishers, 1966 :: p. 93

(Reminder for me to be more mindful when being around little boy)

“But in those countries where the toy making industry is less advanced, you will find children with quite different tastes. They are also calmer, more sensible and happy. Their one idea is to take part in the activities going on about them. They are more like ordinary folk, using and handling the same things as the grown-ups.”
The Absorbent Mind :: Clio Press Limited, 1994 :: p. 154

(hah… the irony of living in a developed materialistic society, where children’s basic needs and more are met, yet they are often so unhappy… maybe when it comes to toys, less is more!)

“We must give the child relaxation from the continuous direction of adults. So we give them the right environment, relaxation and freedom from orders. This is an indirect treatment; it is not the correction of the individual but the preparation for a new life. This is something children have never had, even in the grandest and richest of homes. For even in a palace, you find that the children are relegated to some obscure nursery.”
The Child, Society and the World :: Clio Press, 1998 :: p. 78

(ok, have to order little boy around less, for this is true, and i can see how this can make anyone want to be even more rebellious)

“During this early period, education must be understood as a help to the unfolding of the child’s inborn psychic powers. This means that we cannot use the orthodox methods of teaching, which depends on talk.”
The Absorbent Mind :: Clio Press Limited, 1994 :: p. 4

“The child is truly a miraculous being, and this should be felt deeply by the educator.”
The Absorbent Mind :: Clio Press Limited, 1994 :: p. 121

With regards to the last quote, well i definitely think my little boy is my biggest and sweetest miracle! However, would i be able to find a childcare teacher who feels the same way? Hmmm… now i’m def still quite undecided about childcare. While i like the principal from MMI a lot more, who answered even the unspoken questions in my mind in a very sincere and unassuming manner, i still feel that Carpe Diem offers a more holistic environment due to its wide open spaces, with its animal farm, herb and spice garden, and i can’t get the image of little boy jumping on their big trampoline out of my head! In many ways, i think i am receiving the message from the universe that Carpe Diem is the better choice, but why must it be so far away?! At least with MMI, i can send little boy there myself very conveniently, and on my off days, i can even spend my time at the nearby library or buy groceries.

Oh well… i will continue to manifest for a childcare environment that will be nurturing to little boy and make him feel fulfilled and happy, and at the same time, one that is feasible for us to take him to in terms of distance and schedule, and of cos, cost.

In the meantime, i guess all of us, Mr Gua Gua, myself, together with his grandparents are still his main educators, and hopefully with our “powers combined”, we are doing a good enough job. 🙂

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