Discover the Child

Discover the Child
"There is a tiny light in the unconscious of mankind which guides it toward better things." "We must follow the child, but we must follow the child as his leader." -Maria Montessori

Wednesday, February 27, 2013

Materials for Developing the Grasp and Eye-Hand Coordination

Gluing- Demonstrate placing a small amount of glue only on the shape. The brush is placed on the brush rest, the shape flipped over and the cloth used to press the shape onto the paper. The child rinses the brush, "For the next person," and replaces the cloth, if necessary. This material requires a pincer grasp and coordination to keep glue only on the shape.This image depicts an extension we've adapted for older children. Three pictures of objects beginning with the same sound are glued onto a sound card.

Cutting Paper- Small pieces of paper are placed in the guinea pig cage as bedding.
Sewing a pre-punched card helps develop a strong pincer grasp and precise coordination.

Chopsticks and Cylindrical Container- A wonderful way for younger children to develop a pincer grasp. Also, this material demonstrates object permanence. Wooden chopsticks offer nice tactile information and hit the bottom of the container with a satisfying plunk.

Transferring with a Spoon- This repurposed Mancala board offers a wonderful opportunity for transferring and sorting.

Container of Containers- challenges eye-hand coordination and requires various grasps.

 Nuts and Bolts- Unique opportunity for wrist rotation.

Saturday, February 16, 2013

Be An Anchor

There are plenty of labels for the kind of parent we don't want to be- helicopter mom, permissive parent, teacup parent. Let's focus on what we do want to be for our young children. We want to be an anchor.

 Sometimes the anchor and boat are one, connected by a chain. Each link of the chain is completely distinct and separate, but interlocked. Honor your child as an individual, but create emotional connections.

The anchor is tossed from the boat, leaving the boat free to movein a safe zone. The boat cannot move safely if the anchor doesn't leave the boat. Feel secure and calm when you separate from your child, but know that your presence, though under the surface, allows your child to feel secure exploring his world within safe boundaries.

No matter how rough the waters on the surface, the anchor remains unmoved. No matter how much your child tantrums, pushes, falls apart, he needs to know that you are steadfast. That is his security.

When your child is ready to sail on, he will no longer need an anchor. He will know how to create new connections without losing himself. He will know how to create his own boundaries. He will know that he remains the same person, no matter how stormy the seas.