Top-Rated Free Essay

Absorbent Mind

Good Essays
DMT-101 Topic 3

Topic 3 (study guide)
1.
2.
3.

The Spiritual Embryo
The Absorbent Mind - Chapter 7 The Secret of Childhood Chapter 6
Montessori: A Modern Approach - pp30-31
1.
2.
3.
4.

Sensitive Periods
The Absorbent Mind - Chaps 3, 10, 11, 13 The Secret of
Childhood - Chap 7, 8
Montessori, A Modern Approach - p 32-36
Montessori: Her Life and Work - Chap 7
1.
2.
3.

The Absorbent Mind
The Absorbent Mind - Chapters 3, 7 ,8
Montessori: Her Life and Work - Chapter 7

Physical Embryo & Spiritual or
Psychic Embryo
Physical Embryo
• Living organism within the womb .
• Cell contains a blue print for development.
• Physically the body is finished when born, it has only to feed and grow. Psychic embryo
• Is from birth to 3 years.
• Psychic means all that is non physical.
• Potential power of the brain: Psychic Patterns
• The mind has to be constructed. Construction of Spiritual Embryo
• For the child to construct himself
Montessori believed that he posses within him before birth a pattern for his psychic unfolding.
• This psychic pattern is revealed only through the process of development.

Thank you everybody …
I know my pattern

Two Embryonic Periods
"Man seems to have two embryonic periods.
One is prenatal, like that of the animals; the other is postnatal and only man has this."
The Absorbent Mind. p.55, Chap 7

Dr. Montessori described the child ‘s psychic and psychological growth as “incarnation.”

• In the man’s psychic embryo, there are no instincts comparable to those of the animals .
• There are instincts in man, in the physical embryo, concerning heartbeat, digestion and other lower functions.

The Spiritual Embryo
Dr Montessori said the child 0-3 years was a
“spiritual embryo” or psychic embryo and she compared it to the physical embryo in the first 9 months in the womb .

The spiritual embryo (psychic embryo) is the name Dr. Montessori gave to the evolving personality of the child in the first 3 years

Spiritual Embryo
“Newly born human beings are particularly vulnerable to their environment. They remain reliant on others for an extraordinarily long period of time, unlike other young mammals that can, within a short period after birth, stand, walk and find food for themselves. Animals have fixed and pre-determined guiding instincts that dictate their development. Human children alone are given free will to move away from their instincts. Each child, therefore, is given the possibility of becoming a unique individual in his own right. Montessori recognized that children held within them the key to the development of their own personalities and that the sensitivity that they were born with exposed them to unique dangers. She felt that they were born with a spiritual nature that had an innate expectation of freedom, warmth and love and that it was of great importance that they experienced these qualities in order to feel secure. At such a young age she saw that the child didn't simply remember his experiences, but he actually formed himself through them. "The things he sees are not just remembered; they form part of his soul."
(The Absorbent Mind. p 56, Chap 7).

Aids to Child’s Self Construction
Internal Aids

External Aids

• Sensitive Periods
• Absorbent Mind

• Environment
• Freedom

Sensitive Periods
 Sensitive Periods are apparent in the early years of childhood.  Sensitive Periods are blocks of time in a child’s life when he is absorbed with one characteristic of the environment. This particular sensitivity towards certain stimuli lasts until a necessary need is fulfilled.

Sensitive Periods
"A child's different inner sensibilities enable him to choose from his complex environment what is suitable and necessary for his growth.
They make the child sensitive to some things, but leave him indifferent to others. When a particular sensitiveness is aroused in a child, it is like a light that shines on some objects but not others, making of them his whole world." The Secret of Childhood p. 42, Chap 7

General Characteristics
 Universal
 Transitory
 Grow in intensity, peak and recede
 End result of intense attention is a calm, satisfied child
 They are inter-related
 Once faded, it can no longer be obtained with ease

Knowledge about Sensitive Periods
• Montessori had read about these periods of sensitivity in the development of animals, but soon realised that she was seeing similar qualities in the interests of children.
• She saw that during these periods the child could learn at a particularly intense rate and that such learning appeared to come very easily.

• "At such a time everything is easy; all is life and enthusiasm. Every effort marks an increase in power." (Ibid p40).
• The sensitive periods that she noted were not linear, i.e., they did not follow one after the other; some overlapped and some were continuous. The Sensitive Periods
 Sensitivity to Order : 1--2 years
 Learning Through their Five Senses: 0--5 years
 Sensitivity for Small minute Objects: 2--2.5 years
 Sensitivity for Movement: 2.5--4 years
 Sensitivity for Language: 1.5--3 years
 Sensitivity for Social Interest: 2.5--6 years

Sensitivity to Order (1-2 years)
 Children show a positive way in seeing things in accustomed places.  Children’s insistence on putting things back in their place.
 Crying or throwing tantrums at unfamiliar places or people.

 Order in the environment will help the child to categorize his perception and build an inner conceptual framework with which he understands and relates with his world

Learning Through their Five Senses
(0 - 5 years)
 It is important to note that the child’s actions are not due to random choice, but directed by his inner need for development.  A child must have objects in his environment, which he can hear, see and manipulate with his hands.
 Children are helped to organize and categorize their sense perception into an inner mental order.

Sensitivity for Small Minute Objects
(2 -2.5 years)
 It helps widen the child’s power of observation.  It allows the child to concentrate his intellectual powers on a specific problem.  It holds the child’s attention there for an extended period, fostering the ability to focus.
 This is a period for children to explore and appreciate his/her surroundings.

Sensitivity for Movement
(2.5 - 4 years)
 It means bringing the body under the control of the ‘will.’
 There is an involuntary inclination to perform and repeat movement purely for the sake of gaining greater and more precise control.

Sensitivity for Language
(1.5 - 3 years)
 The fact that babies do not imitate any sounds in the environment shows that babies possess sensitivity towards human language.
 Sounds are developed during the early years.

Sensitivity for Social Interest
(2.5 - 6 years)
 Children pay special attention to other children of their own age.
 Children at about age three are in solitary play or parallel play.
 The work of sensitive period enables recognizable affections and friendships to develop.
 They learn to be part of a group.

The Effect of Starving Children from the
Right Environment
Sensitivity to order:
 The child may not be able to orientate himself and construct a mental picture of the world.
 He will feel very insecure and has no confidence in himself. Sensitivity to learning through the five senses:
 The child may become more rebellious.
 It will lead to poor concentration.

The Effect of Starving Children from the
Right Environment
Sensitivity to small objects:
 It may discourage the curiosity of the child in discovering new things.
 It will make him less observant of his environment and therefore affect his learning.
 The child might become very passive.

The Effect of Starving Children from the
Right Environment
Sensitivity to coordination of movement:
 It will affect the perfection of their movement.
 They will not develop balance.
Sensitivity to language:
 If a child is not exposed regularly to language, his language will be damaged.

The Effect of Starving Children from the
Right Environment
Sensitivity to the social aspect of life:
 If the child is not allowed to play or socialize with others, he may feel lonely.
 He will replace this with a lot of attention from the parents.  The child will become unfriendly and anti-social.

Absorbent Mind
It is the process by which the child gains knowledge from his environment.
"Impressions do not merely enter his mind; they form it. They incarnate themselves in him. The child creates his own 'mental muscles' using for this what he finds in the world around him.
We have named this type of mentality The Absorbent Mind."
Absorbent Mind p.24, Chap 3

Unconscious Mind
• 0-3 years
• Incorporates knowledge
/impressions into his psychic life

Conscious Mind
• 3-6 years
• Has memory and a will

Absorbent Mind

"Impressions pour into us and we store them in our minds; but we ourselves remain apart from them as a vase keeps separate from the water it contains. Instead, the child undergoes a transformation. Impressions do not merely enter the mind; they form it. They incarnate themselves in him... We have named this type of mentality The Absorbent Mind."
The Absorbent Mind p. 24, Chap 3

Absorbent Mind
 This is why this first period in human development is so important.

 It is the foundation on which all else rests.  It facilitates the absorption of the social world.
 At first the growing child has no sense of itself being apart from the world around it.
 Slowly, it expands its knowledge and learns to perceive itself as a separate and distinct entity.

Absorbent Mind…
It is this ability to absorb its particular world that allows each child to adapt to the characteristics of its individual culture.
Montessori realised that it was the influences that shaped a child's mind at these early stages that either released him to develop in his full glory, or impeded him not only in childhood, but on into adulthood “Before three, the functions are being created, after three they develop.”

8 Psychic Patterns
Natural Laws of Development
 The principles or natural laws governing the child’s psychic growth reveal themselves through the process of his development.
 We as adults must be aware of the “natural laws of development” and aid the child in order for him to reach his full potential.

Psychic Patterns
Natural Laws of Development
1.
2.
3.
4.
5.
6.
7.
8.

Law of work
Law of independence
Power of attention
Development of the will
Development of intelligence
Development of imagination & creativity
Development of emotional & spiritual life
Stages of growth

Law of Work
 The child works to perfect himself, using the environment as the means.
 The aim of the child’s work is not on external one; it is an internal one, that is for self-construction.
 The child follows the law of maximum effort.
 Children use the environment to improve themselves. The adult use themselves to improve the environment.
 Children work for the sake of process; however the adult is concerned with the end result.
 The rhythm of the child’s work is different from the adult.

Law of Work…
Child
 Self construction

Adult
 External one

 Law of maximum effort  Minimum effort /will expect help
 Sake of process

 End result

 Rhythm

 Quickest route

Law of Independence
No one can be free unless he is independent
 Never do what the child can do.
 Develop his will; direct him towards a goal /task.
 Develop discipline.
 Develop understanding of good and evil.
 Freedom.

Power of Attention

"The first essential for the child's development is concentration. It lays the whole basis for his character and social behavior. He must find out how to concentrate, and for this he needs things to concentrate upon. This shows the importance of his surroundings, for no one acting on the child from outside can cause him to concentrate. Only he can organize his psychic life."
The Absorbent Mind p 202, Chap 22

Power of Attention…

"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.“
Ibid p.188, Chap 19

Development of the Will

"Will and obedience then go hand in hand, in as much as the will is a prior foundation in the order of development, and obedience is a later stage resting on this foundation."
A.M. Pg 234, Chap 25

Development of the Will…
3 Stages:
1.

2.

3.

•Inward Impulse

•Comes responsible for his actions

•Power to obey

Development of the Will…
"Obedience is seen as something which develops in the child in much the same way as other aspects of his character. At first it is dictated purely by the hormic impulse, then it rises to the level of consciousness, and thereafter it goes on developing, stage by stage, till it comes under the control of the conscious will."
Absorbent Mind , Chap 25

Development of Intelligence
Intelligence is defined as: “ the sum of those reflex and associative or reproductive activities which enable the mind to construct itself, putting into relation with environment”

There is much information stored in the unconscious in the first 3 years, the child needs to bring it to consciousness. This happens through activity with hands.

Development of Intelligence…
 By the age of 3, the child is well acquainted with the world.  Unconscious mind has stored many impressions, but it is not knowledge / not conscious.
 To obtain knowledge, it is done by the intelligence – comparing & discriminating between impressions received through the sense.
 He must organize these perceptions of the environment received through his senses.

Development of Intelligence…
Moving from concrete to abstraction:
1. Wooden triangle puzzle – tangible object
2. Matches to solid outline
3. Matches to thick outline
4. Matches to a thin outline
5. Definition of a triangle (at a much later stage)

Development of the Child’s
Imagination & Creativity
 The development of the child’s imagination and creativity are inborn powers within the child that develops.
 Montessori recognized that children's ability to imagine things that were not actually present demonstrated a special mental ability of high order.
 The more she worked with children, the more convinced she became that this power of imagination needed to be founded upon reality.

Development of the Child’s
Imagination & Creativity…
 By introducing concepts and images that had no basis in true reality the child could be misled into illusions and these illusions had nothing to ground them.
 Instead of extending understanding and learning possibilities, fantasies could inhibit the child's natural development.
 Again and again, she saw that children were drawn to work purposefully, to activities that were meaningful to them, and that it was this contact with reality that had a transformative effect on their behavior.

Development of the Child’s
Imagination & Creativity…
"If, then, the true basis of the imagination is reality, and its perception is related to exactness of observation, it is necessary to prepare children to perceive the things in their environment exactly, in order to secure for them the material required by the imagination.”

How to Develop Imagination
 Experience with real things
 Concrete manipulation of objects
 Read real stories
 Freedom
 Be in touch with nature
 Sensorial education as indirect preparation for later learning
 Truth & reality
 Cultural subjects

Difference Between Imagination &
Fantasy
Imagination

Fantasy

 Great benefit to mankind because it is based on reality and grows out of it.

 Aimless and uncontrolled wanderings of an unproductive mind.

 Imagination generates practical applications.

 It can be made up of illusions that have nothing to do with our every day life.

5 Stages to Develop Imagination
First Stage is when the child is absorbing the environment; he takes in all that is around him and it becomes part of him.

Second Stage is assimilating all the information he sees. He will order the information until he gets an understanding of it. That’s why the presentations must be clear and consistent and the idea you’re teaching isolated.

Third Stage is when the child becomes familiar with the idea and wants to practice. There is a need for repetition in which he discovers new things.

5 Stages to Develop Imagination…
Fourth Stage is when the child is using his imagination and he makes connections between the materials and the environment.

Fifth Stage is when the child is doing creative action or spontaneous activity.

Emotional & Spiritual Life
 Needs met through social interaction
• Freedom to interact
• Learn from experiences of others
• Mixed age groups

 Sense of mutual interaction
 Adult responsibility

 Developing morals /setting boundaries

Emotional & Spiritual Life…
“Teachers who use direct methods cannot understand how social behavior is fostered in a Montessori school. They think it offers scholastic material but not social material. They say, ‘If the child does everything on his own, what becomes of social life? But what is social life if not solving of social problems, behaving properly, and pursuing aims acceptable to all? To them, social life consists of sitting side by side and hearing someone else talk; but that is just the opposite. The only social life that children get in the ordinary schools is during playtime or the excursions.”

Stages of Growth
Age

Observation

 0-3 years

 Unconscious mind

 3-6 years

 Conscious mind

 6-9 years

 Skills need for academic studies  9-12 years

 Acquire knowledge

 12-18 years

 Explore life

You May Also Find These Documents Helpful

  • Powerful Essays

    The Mind-Body problem

    • 1454 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Many theories have been challenged throughout the history of psychology. Mind vs. Body is one of the most important issues that has formed the basic foundation in this field today. One of the central questions in psychology and philosophy concerns the mind-body problem: Is the mind part of the body, or the body part of the mind? If they are distinct, then how do they interact? And which of the two is in charge? (McLeod, 2007). Philosophers have examined the relationship between the two and have proposed a variety of approaches to support their arguments.…

    • 1454 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Better Essays

    Secrets of the Mind

    • 927 Words
    • 4 Pages

    [ 2 ]. Phantoms in the Brain: Probing the Mysteries of the Human Mind, coauthor Sandra Blakeslee, 1998, ISBN 0-688-17217-2…

    • 927 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Better Essays
  • Good Essays

    Two-track Mind

    • 791 Words
    • 4 Pages

    A metaphor is the use of something familiar to understand something less familiar. For instance, if a news report says "unemployment went down this month," the familiar feeling of "going down" helps everyone to understand that the number of people looking for work has reduced.…

    • 791 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Two-track Mind

    • 404 Words
    • 2 Pages

    A metaphor is the use of something familiar to understand something less familiar. For instance, if a news report says "unemployment went down this month," the familiar feeling of "going down" helps everyone to understand that the number of people looking for work has reduced.…

    • 404 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    Animal Mind

    • 2123 Words
    • 9 Pages

    Do animals think? This question has been debated for centuries and no clear answer has yet to be decided. By looking at television, comic books, and children’s literature it would seem that animals do think and act intelligently. The fictional characters are given human movements, behavior, and language. In contrast, science, philosophy, and many other academic fields do not believe animals to think, feel, or behave intelligently. Animals are merely machines that have neither feelings nor conscious thought (Schultz & Schultz, 2008).…

    • 2123 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Secrets of the Mind

    • 2174 Words
    • 9 Pages

    If I were to tell of one event that someone would ask me to share, you know for the good of mankind thing, I would say, "Have you ever met a Dragon before?" Quite possibly you have, maybe in a past life, which is your queue to say, "yeah, right Sarah nobody believes in reincarnation any more, at least normal people don't." It's funny because neither did I: that was before I went off to college. I love the word normal because it puts everything you've ever learned on the line and tests it to your new experiences; let's face it people normal is all in your mind.…

    • 2174 Words
    • 9 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Best Essays

    Theory of mind

    • 2466 Words
    • 10 Pages

    predictions about how others will behave, according to the state of mind they are presumed to be in.…

    • 2466 Words
    • 10 Pages
    Best Essays
  • Good Essays

    Human Consciousness

    • 479 Words
    • 2 Pages

    An unconscious person will die without constant care. Yet, as crucial as consciousness is, we can’t really explain how it occurs. On the other hand, we can identify various states of consciousness and explore the role they play in our lives. This is especially true of sleep and dreaming, two states that psychologists have studied in detail. This first module introduces a number of altered states of consciousness and provides a guided tour of sleep and dreaming.…

    • 479 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Mind-Body Dualism

    • 892 Words
    • 4 Pages

    Humans seem to be an entity made up by a combination of both physical properties and mental properties. Folk psychology of soul proposed by Bering (2006) suggested “common-sense mind-body dualism” is a cognitive adaptation that evolved through natural selection. According to this quote, it is believed that individual is fundamentally constituted of body, mind and volition. For centuries, people have tried to discover what makes an individual from philosophical, psychological and physiological perspectives. At different stages of this knowledge in understanding human beings, behaviourism, humanism and the study of consciousness will be critically evaluated in this discussion.…

    • 892 Words
    • 4 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Brainfluence

    • 71984 Words
    • 304 Pages

    Contents Preface: Why Brainfluence? Acknowledgments About the Author Chapter 1: Sell to 95 Percent of Your Customer’s Brain Brainfluence Takeaway: Stop Selling to 5 Percent of Your Customer’s Brain Section One: Price and Product Brainfluence Chapter 2: The “Ouch!” of Paying Bundling Minimizes Pain Fairness Counts Credit as Painkiller Brainfluence Takeaway: Minimum Pain, Maximum Sales Chapter 3: Don’t Sell Like a Sushi…

    • 71984 Words
    • 304 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Satisfactory Essays

    Kendra Cherry is a psychologist and in this article she defines and explains the conscious and unconscious state of mind. She gives very concrete details that clarify and illuminate the two state of minds.…

    • 333 Words
    • 2 Pages
    Satisfactory Essays
  • Powerful Essays

    The Mind Body Problem

    • 913 Words
    • 3 Pages

    The mind-body problem can be broken down into a series of questions. What is the mind? What is the body? Do the mind and body co-exist, or does the mind only exist in the body? Or does the body only exist in the mind? If both the mind and body exist, there could be a number of types of relationships. Maybe the mind affects the body. Maybe the body affects the mind, or maybe the mind and body both affect each other. The later possibility is called Dualist Interactionism, and is, in my mind, the most likely to be accurate. In this essay I will describe what this dualist theory is, and explain why I believe it to be true.…

    • 913 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Powerful Essays
  • Good Essays

    Key players: Charles Sanders Pierce (first to state the pragmatic maxim); Joseph Margolis; Quine; Bertrand Russell; William James; John Dewey; George Herbert Mead...pragmatists were inspired by Kant, Thomas Reid, and Hume (among others.)…

    • 666 Words
    • 3 Pages
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Secrets of the Mind

    • 401 Words
    • 1 Page

    The brain “runs” our body, and has complete control of everything from muscle movement to our ability to study and remember the material. In some cases, it controls limbs that are not even there. This is known as phantom limb syndrome. The patient in the study can feel the limb, even though it is not there. In tests that were done, it is believed that there may be a cross-wiring of the neuropathways. The path that controls the amputated arm is sending out signals, but is not receiving any back, so it keeps sending more signals. This resending of the signals over and over causes pain to the patient that feels like it is in the arm that is not there. To alleviate the pain, the doctor puts the patient’s good arm in a box; next to it is a mirror where the amputated arm would be. The patient clenches and unclenches his arm, while looking at the mirror. The brain is basically tricked to stop sending signals, so the patient is relieved of the pain.…

    • 401 Words
    • 1 Page
    Good Essays
  • Good Essays

    Theory of Mind

    • 1650 Words
    • 7 Pages

    Within this TMA I will be discussing Theory of Mind and how it may have evolved in humans, using the Theory of Evolution to explain this. I will also be looking at what the adaptive function of Theory of Mind in humans may be. The adaptive function in this essay means the relative ability of a person to effectively interact with society on all levels and care for one’s self; affected by one’s eagerness to practice skills and follow opportunities for enhancement.…

    • 1650 Words
    • 7 Pages
    Good Essays