|Image from: http://simplymontessori.blogspot.com|
One of the least photogenic areas of Montessori education is also one of the most important : Grace & Courtesy. While teaching please and thank you is a common aspect of all youth programs, grace & courtesy has a greater meaning to Montessori classrooms. Having lived through both world wars, Dr Montessori was profoundly influenced by the need to establish peace in the world. From her perspective, teaching children to coexist in a respectful manner regardless of culture, race, religion, economic status or any other differences was paramount to ending the need for war.
DJ has both been making strides in learning grace and also struggling with his violent emotions. I read recently that 2-year-olds are the most violent humans in the world! And DJ has been doing his part by hitting, kicking, biting and throwing things at (mostly) me! Oh, help.
At the same time, he's also becoming much more consistent at saying please, thank you and I'm sorry. Sometimes without even being prompted. Earlier today I witnessed him demanding that our dog get away from the kitchen counter (after an opportunistic attempt on her part to get his lunch). When Lucy backed off, I heard little DJ saying say sweetly, "Thank you, Lucy." Hallelujah.