Recently, we were having morning and bedtime struggles with my 5-yr old son.  My first instinct was to come up with a plan of attack.  “We will give him choices,” I thought.  “We will be prepare him in advance so he knows what to expect and we will issue consequences consistently.”  I was thinking unilaterally and looking back on it, I can see why Lucas was being so resistant.

What I really needed was an opening of the heart and a renewing of the mind.  If I do not come from a place of love and understanding, I am like a “resounding gong or clanging symbol.”  1 Corinthians 1:13

These words from Maria Montessori, Her Life and Her Work by her disciple E.M. Standing really spoke to me.  (And incidentally, all morning and bedtime issues have been completely resolved.  Soon I will share how we turned things around.)

The child resembles the artist…because he has the task of creating a great masterpiece-which is the man-to-be.  That is why you can no more hurry him than you can hurry on the work of an artist.

This excerpt also made me think of my toddler…

God’s Spies

The young explorer is never idle, because he is looking in the world to find himself – reflected in a mirror with a thousand facets.  That is why everything attracts him.  Whilst he is examining the objects in the world around him, he is – as it were – stealing from their qualities – their shapes, surfaces, textures, their colours, weight, sizes, uses, composition, and so forth.  These he mysteriously builds into himself (like a spiritual caddisworm) and with them constructs his mental being...

…We miss the whole significance and drama of the child’s existence if we forget this – forget that for him each morning is as fresh and as wonderful as that first morning in which the stars shouted for joy at the creation of the world…

…As a modern writer (Vonier) says, “To admire something is like a stream of fresh water, flowing over the soul’s surface.”

Ahhhhh…