Jedi is 6 years 7 months, Monkey is 3 years 5 months, Bitty Bug is 1 year, 5 months
This week, we introduced something new into our Montessori routine…not quite a homeschooling thing, but just part of the “being a Montessori family” tool. Like most siblings, Jedi and Monkey fight. A lot. Over everything. It’s compounded because of Jedi’s Asperger’s and Monkey’s Reactive Attachment Disorder and processing issues. The typical pattern is that one does something, even accidental, and the other just blows up with a full blown meltdown complete with attempts at retrobution.
While reading How to Raise an Amazing Child, The Montessori Way, I learned about something called the Peace Table. On the peace table, there is typically something symbolic of peace–a dove, a white flower, etc. For ours, we chose a non-breakable vase (we actually got it while in Vietnam, so Monkey loves it!), a branch of red silk flowers to (so that it doesn’t stick out with our current decor in that room), and a little dove figure.
When one child (or even an adult I suppose) feels hurt or wronged, when he or she is ready, (s)he goes to the peace table, grabs the vase, presents it to the other party and invites them to the peace table. There, the person who feels wronged holds the vase and talks about what they feel and what might have caused it. Then (s)he passes the vase to the other party to say their piece. The vase keeps getting passed back and forth as one party talks and the other listens. Once the issue is settled and both parties are happy, they both put their hand on the bell and together they ring it to let the rest of the house know that peace has been restored.
- The vase with flowers and dove on the peace table
So far, the kids both need an adult mediator to help them with the listening parts, but they seem to be enjoying the process of working things out without hitting eachother or tantruming. Jedi was having a hard time realizing that he can’t sit there and demand that Monkey do 100 jumping jacks as retribution for an accidental hit. So, a parent still has to mediate in order to prevent Monkey from having to do hard time….
And other pictures from this week…
Monkey and Jedi...
Monkey liked working with the metal insets
Not really pure Montessori, but it was in the music cabinet and Monkey wanted to do it. The child puts together various "pipe-like" pieces, and then add a flared end to the bottom and a mouthpiece to the top to make a flute.
Monkey finally chose the pink tower again, after months of not wanting to touch it. She got it stacked correctly the first try. Next we'll try to work on centering each block.
After Bitty Bug worked with this last week, Monkey decided she wanted to as well. She chose the card where you match each bug to the matching bug and color on the card.
Monkey's using the shape puzzle again where you choose a scene and put the shape pieces into the slots to form the rest of the picture.
Parts of a horse puzzle
Monkey was playing with her wooden kitchen and decided to sort the foods by color since we've been doing a lot of color sorting lately.