Friday, 31 August 2012

the plan...

First off, I want to say a heartfelt thank you to all of you.

To all of you that took the time to reply, to send prayers, cyber hugs, opinions, suggestions, life experiences, and ideas.  I took the time to read all of your replies, many times, and inspire myself for this new challenge we are facing. THANK YOU.

After I wrote my post, I closed the computer, and took the kids to one of our favourite nature spot, the neighbourhood swamp.  The kids were free to run and play, and I was free to think and ponder over the whole situation.  How we got here, how never to get in this again, and most of all how to help X to be the free and curious little man he used to be.

There are a couple of things that I did that same night, that is aside from asking guidance from however is above us.  One of them was making a cross on my year's plan, and decided that X will be making the plan as we are going, that is at least, for a while.  "Follow the child" she said. And so I will.

Buying this book that had been on my amazon wish list for a while was a close second.

All of a sudden, it felt like it was more urgent for me to own and read this book then it used to.  It has just crossed my doorstep, so I will be modelling a lot of reading for the next few days.

I also decided to leave him be.  To let him take the time to come back to learning when he is ready to.  Right now, he spends his days listening to audio stories, play, and help around the house.  I don't even try to push math or anything during these moments, as I am scared that it will push him away.  He wants to spend a lot of time on his own, which is rather unusual for him, normally, he loves to be with us all the time, so I am a little shaken by this.

Meg from At Home with Montessori, left a very helpful comment in the last post.
Quoting her:  "use this time of inactivity to prepare a home environment that calls to him like no other." 

This I can do.  This is something I know how to do.
She managed to say in words what I was planning in my head.  

So what will I do? What is my plan?

1. Be patient.
Seems easy right?  Seems I said... (and it is SO not!)

Then I want to create a learning environment that will be awesome to E and M in hopes that seeing the other engage with material and enjoy themselves, it would drawn him to learning as well.  (and also hoping that both E and M will continue on their paths to learning too!! )  This should fulfill their need, the ones I was not really able to deal with last week.  In this same area, I want to add material specifically for X, things that he will be curious about and hopefully will eventually want to explore.  Displaying inviting material and rotating them regularly usually is hard to resists...or at least, I hope!

I also took the decision to be a role model for him.  To engage myself in activities I love and let him be free to join or not.  To open the door to explorations and enjoy the moment, and see if he picks up too.  Maybe at some point, he'll just join in the fun with me, with us.

I am hopeful throught it all.  Hopeful that we will work or way that we'll find solutions, and that we'll be able to act tactfully given the circumstances.  I am thankful that we caught this now, and not later when the situation could have been much more dramatic.  Thankful that we have the chance to help him out the way we are doing so.

But I feel like walking on eggs shells all the time.  This situation doesn't feel natural for me.  I am always scared of pushing him in one direction with my actions, my words, that inevitably will draw him the opposite direction.

"Don't step back and abandon him in his confusion though.."

And yes this scares me a lot, I am terrified of leaving him all to himself more then he needs, of giving him too much space, and that he looses touch with us while being in his own little world.  How will he come back?
It is such a balancing game, one I am not used to, and certainly not experienced either.  But I will follow him.  Through it all, this is the one single piece of advice that has ALWAYS served me well.

Speaking of, did you know today is Maria Montessori's 142nd birthday anniversary?


  1. Let me know how you like the book. I am very new to Montessori and have a 12 month old.

    And I did see today Googles Doodle was Montessori. I guess the founder went to a Montessori school!

  2. I hope you find this book useful and inspiring. I have this book too and Lori's approach resonates so deeply with me. From what you have said it may seem that X would find great joy from a project. For Jack, nothing captures his attention more or inspires him to learn than an activity/experience which he has initiated. It takes a little time to change our thinking from one of 'teacher' to one of 'mentor' and 'guide' but in my experience, when we let go of the reigns and let our children guide their learning based on what interests them, they are engaged and enthusiastic and focussed. This is true and authentic learning.