The Sensitive Period for Order: How Your Child’s Mess Can Stimulate a Learning Environment


The sensitive period for order beings from the very minute your little one enters this world. However, between the ages of 18 months to about 2 years of age, your child is at his/her utmost zealous stage where the need to establish order and routine is most prominent. It is often mistaken by adults that a child lacks order when he/she makes a mess in a given environment, but it is important to accept and realize that such situations are only minor disorders in your little one’s world, disorders that are part of a significant learning process, unrecognizable and often categorized as ‘terrible-two’s’ by adults.

To prepare and support your child through this sensitive period, begin by establishing ground rules in every environment. Just like in a Montessori setting, explain and demonstrate that everything has its proper place. Such a physical task institutes and encourages a child’s inner sense of order, a key foundation in character building.

As described after much observation of children, Maria Montessori (1870 – 1952) regards this sensitive period as the most ‘baffling’ for adults. This is so because children, lacking a sense of order, may show signs of distress in the form of tantrums that in turn, for parents, may be quite upsetting. Remind yourself that your little one needs to familiarize him/herself in this new world and only through limitations, consistency and a systematic environment, can you provide for this.

Frequent and consistent observation as well as respect of your child’s sense of routine would give you direction and a better understanding during this sensitive period. In fact, you might be surprised to see your young one at work – removing and replacing things where they should go!      

 

About TOYconomy

TOYconomy is an online toy rental and exchange program that can help you significantly decrease toy clutter and help you save money and resources by being more selective about the toys you choose. Founded and established in 2010 by a mother of three in Richmond, VA, TOYconomy’s mission is to help you keep your kids happy and healthy without having to burn big bucks.

TOYconomy is available at http://www.TOYconomy.com/.

 

About the Author

Sarah Jane is certified & trained in Montessori Teaching, with years of expansive knowledge and experience with young children from diverse backgrounds and cultures. Sarah Jane expresses her love and interest for child development through her writing, constantly sharing and promoting awareness to parents and educational workers from all walks of life. She is also the co-founder of a multinational marketing firm Hot Fry Media (http://hotfrymedia.com).

 

© Sarah Jane 2011

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