Who's the Second Plane child?
A transformation takes place around the age of six.
"What happened to my sweet, lovable, and dependable little five-year-old," parents often ask me.
The transition from the first plane of development (the stage between birth and age six) to the second plane (the stage between ages six and 12) can be a challenging one if we don't take the time to understand who our children are and what they need from us and the world.
Over the summer, I put together a short video to help adults begin to unde…
A New Perspective on Albums - Part I
Montessori albums can seem overwhelming at first, so I want to help you understand how to use them to find a balance between structure and improvisation.
To do this, let’s take a little trip.
Imagine you and your child are planning this trip. You first have to decide on a continent. From there, you choose a starting country. And then, you start thinking about the cities you’ll visit and what you’ll see in each city. This type of planning is leading you from the whole to the detail, and it refl…
The Second Plane Child
Note: This essay was one of many that I wrote as part of my AMI elementary training in Bergamo, Italy. You can find a complete bibliography at the end of the post.
The child enters the second plane of development somewhere around his sixth birthday, and traverses that phase for approximately six years (through age 12). It is important to note that this development, like that which came before it and that which will follow, is transitory. Therefore, the changes the child experien…
The Most Valuable Lesson
I would love to say that the first official day of our homeschool year started off peacefully, but that would be a big fat lie. I did everything right; we discussed a routine, prepared our environment, and set expectations for the week. And yet, when Monday rolled around and I reminded my son that it was time to practice writing (his biggest challenge), I was met with all kinds of resistance.
I expected his push-back. And he expected me to respond as I do most of the time: with empathy, trust…
Five Things I Wish I Knew When I Started Homeschooling
My kids and I began homeschooling halfway through the school year when I left my Montessori teaching job, and at first I invested all my energy into re-creating a small classroom in my living room. I had visions of my children happily engaging in my inspiring lessons. But instead of harmony and joyful learning, there was apathy and avoidance of anything that remotely resembled what they knew as school.
Humbled and defeated, I gave up my visions of my one-room schoolhouse. I wiped away tears o…
On Being "The Older Child"
After 10 weeks of lockdown-schooling, when June 1st arrived and parts of our city reopened, I called for a homeschooling break. My kids agreed, and we spent three lazy weeks picnicking in the park, reading, and playing.
My children have always been creative, and they have plenty of LEGOs and art supplies to stay busy and engaged, but by the end of those three weeks I sensed a certain restless energy - a need for a project and a goal much bigger than what their emerging imaginations could envisi…
Great Books for Our Great Stories
Many of you have asked me to share my favorite books that align with the Great Stories. So, here they are! I have used every single one of these books either in my elementary classrooms or in our homeschool life. Some are child-friendly reference books, but many have activities to inspire follow-up work.
*This page contains affiliate links. I receive a small compensation when you purchase through these links, and it allows me to continue bringing high-quality Montessori content at no cost to yo…
"I'm not telling you it's going to be easy - I'm telling you it's going to be worth it."
- Art Williams
Maybe you're just starting to homeschool...Or perhaps you've been a home educator for years. Either way, the road can be bumpy and the journey can be daunting. I hope these suggestions empower, reassure, and inspire you to keep going. Use them as a jumping-off point or as a way to re-calibrate your compass. And remember that in homeschooling, change is the only constant, because we'…
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