I went shopping today. My Sunday stroll; an excuse to buy (and drink) coffee and chat to marketeers in a slightly mood-altered fashion. I was relaxed and contemplative. I was swimming with the tide, rather than against it and damn, I love that. So, apart from the weekly reminder that “I could do this everyday, if I chose to” I nearly knocked a young boy over with my vege bag. I stopped. I looked at him and I said, “excuse me sweetheart”.
I mean it. Excuse me. Sweetheart. Excuse my disregard for your presence you sweetheart, you wondrous being. Child of God, even.
I was taght in my Montessori training that (amazzzzzingly) the way I am around a child teaches him how to be. I drank up this lesson and around that time, I realised that I was meant to be here for the child and I vowed to do so.
Sometimes I fall short – I get cranky in class, I direct them with my hands (NO!) or pat them on the head like a dog. But, usually I am conscious of the density of my actions toward their absorbent minds.
Children learn how to behave from adults. They are in awe. We are their gods. No wonder some educators advocate vehemently the importance of early years education. Children learn how to talk from adults. If I talk about someone behind their back in front of a child, guess what they think is the norm. If I talk down to another, they will indefinitely do the same. If I cringe when I hear someones voice, smirk when someone is hurt, whinge about life, and push past them at the markets. These are my lessons to them. Each day, all day, when a child is near me. I give them a world with my own shortcomings.
So, I wear nice clothes. I smile. I ask “how are you today?” I convince them that “it is so lovely to see you”, and I kneel to their level, rather than shout across the room. Small things? BIG things. As she so passionately declares, “The things he sees are not just remembered; they form a part of his soul.” Maria Montessori.
P.S. I have developed a website and a business plan for something…beautiful. Well, this is how it feels. It is a seed following the curves of my own roots. It buds and hides, and sprouts again, with the flow of my life. And like my life, it is never as it seemed in the beginning. More is always revealed. Here she is myoasismontessori.com.au. Please visit!