Wednesday, May 13, 2009

What made me think of my ox...

I was reminded of Bry-D's stubborn streak because of a discussion we had about Eliz and Lex, and schooling, and just general lifestyle. Because Eliz's birthday is in September, she can't go to school until 2010. Unless we go my route, and she goes to a Montessori school. If I could have my ideal, she would go to a Montessori school until she graduates, but there aren't many that go to that age. Montessori is divided by age and the age groups are called Periods-I think the 15-18 age is Period 7, but I'm probably wrong. Anyway. I would definitely define myself as Montessorian, and also, passionately so. Before Eliz was born, I started telling Bry-D about all the things I wanted to do. And all those things were, at the very least, unconventional. Bry-D's response to, well, all of them, was, "No." And sometimes he added, "That's not how my parents did it, so it's not how we're doing it." He even admitted once, after Eliz was born, that he felt his parents way was the only "correct" way. All the things I wanted to do were Montessori-before I had even gotten pregnant, I had been studying the Montessori Method, and loved it. If I were to define Montessori in one word, it would be Freedom. Freedom for your child to discover what something is, and not be told. Maria Montessori called it independence, and the way it's done, they are about the same thing. She also said, "Follow the child" When something in one of MM's principles doesn't quite mesh, I follow the child. In all of MM's theories and principles, you can see the foundation comes from following the child. This is not to say that children run amuck, they are given a prepared or controlled environment to discover in.
I wanted to follow Montessori as much as possible, and once I started staying home with Eliz, I started to implement it. When I showed Bry-D that I had started training Eliz to get her food space set up and cleaned up at about 18 months, he was like, "cool!" But I never told him I did it because it was Montessori. I've always been really picky about her toys, and there are toys we were given that I intentionally never encouraged her to play with. I'm not going to be a tyrant to other people, but I will be the filter for my daughter-I decide, in the end, what she gets to play with. Out of a guilty conscience she has gotten to play with everything anyone has ever given her, but things I didn't like got rotated out faster than others. So, I've been working at home with her, using primarily Montessori methods. And to be honest, I think in my heart, I've come to the conclusion that if she can't go to a Montessori school until at least age 12, I'll home school her. Now then, with Lex, things have definitely changed. When I brought up some of the things I wanted for Lex that Bry-D hadn't allowed with Eliz, he was hestant, but in the end said, "I trust your judgement, we'll do what you think is best." Wow. Hearing him say that, I fell in love all over again.

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