Human Needs and Tendencies

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The Cosmic Responsibility: An Essay on Human Needs, Task and Tendencies Dr. Montessori’s educational aims are to help the development of the child; and to help him adapt himself to (a) the physical conditions of his environment; (b) to the social requirements dictated by the way of life of the group of people among whom he lived – the society. For adaptation thus considered stability plays a great role because it represents the basis from which to start from towards the realization of the individual’s aspiration. Some of the fundamental and unchanging facts that may help us in our task of educating concern “the child” himself. Therefore, it is important that we study his needs, functions and his possible tendency to further understand the child, identify the manner of assistance we can give them and to fulfil the aim of giving these children the picture of mankind in the world. These basic aspects of man are invariable no matter what situation is. No matter what the ideologies of the moment, certain facts remain constant. He may be normal or with disability but his basic needs remains the same. “base yourself upon the fundamental facts that do not change no matter what the ideology is at any special historical moment or how often ideologies change and by doing so sway men to pursue different channels.” – Maria Montessori Human Needs

According to the book Creative Development in the Child: A Montessori Approach(p.288) by Rukmini Ramachandran, “A man does not come to the Earth merely to eat and enjoy himself! Like all other forms of life, he comes with his hands to do his work. He must (a) nourish his himself, (b)reproduce his kind and (c)find the best living conditions for himself and his family.” It is a mere summary of the Needs of Man and how mankind fits in with the rest of life as identified by Montessori. Man survived for generations through exploration driven by his needs. God gave to man as condition for further development that first of all it should keep alive. Only then when they have satisfied this rule shall they become spiritual. (Human Tendencies and Montessori Education by Mario Montessori p. 22) Becoming an Effective Classroom Manager: A Resource for Teachers Maslow suggests that humans have needs and qualities that serve as motivators of behaviour. His scheme suggests that lower-level needs must be satisfied to a reasonable degree before the more advanced need levels emerge as behavioural motivators. When there is a large hiatus between the learner’s needs and the objectives of the teacher, then discipline problems may develop. An application of Maslow’s teachings would point out the fact that a hungry child will not be motivated towards learning long division because his or her mind is on food and a growling stomach. This is the fulfilment of the need of the man to nourish himself for the first plank would be physiologic needs. It is also considered as the Fundamental Needs of Man - the need to keep his body alive. The second plank of the pyramid is the need for security and safety. This need is referring to the human need to find the best living conditions for him and his family. It is revealed to humanity that every part of this planet there is a human being who lives in a certain condition which is completely different from what an individual is used to. Those who live in Antarctica compared to those who live in the desserts of Saudi Arabia are examples of this adaptation. Man’s needs to control his body temperature or protect his inadequate body must be satisfied before he can fulfil another need which is naturally of less priority. Once children fulfil their physical, security, and safety needs, they have the need for love and belonging. They feel that they have fulfilled this need when they are accepted by others, given attention and affection. This is what was referred by Montessori as the need for gregariousness. After love and belonging comes the need for respect and self-esteem this need...
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