The First Dawning of Self-Discipline Comes Through Work. Discuss This Statement

1289 Words Oct 26th, 2011 6 Pages

Montessori believed that inner discipline, or self-discipline, is an active skill which is developed over time within each child, and is not something that pre-exists. She held it to be a natural part of the normal progression and growth of the child, but nevertheless, something that must be nurtured in the right way in order for it to develop fully. In her view, every child is born with the innate ability and desire to develop himself and his self-discipline, in a constructive manner, through work and under gentle guidance which nevertheless allows the child freedom to interact in his environment.
Through her observations, Montessori noted
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Such a one is not disciplined but annihilated. We claim that an individual is disciplined when he is master of himself, and when he can, as a consequence, control himself when he must follow a rule of life.” (Montessori, The Discovery of the Child,p.51).
At this second level of development, the child has reached the ability to obey since he has a degree of self-discipline and can subdue himself to follow the instructions given to him. Montessori writes about this second level that it is “when the child can always obey, or rather, when there are no longer any obstacles deriving from his lack of control. His powers are now consolidated and can be directed not only by his own will, but by the will of another” (The Absorbent Mind, p.233). This, for some people, is as much as can be expected of children, but Montessori observed an even higher level of development of the will.
This third level of obedience is attained when the child’s will-power is highly developed and he is living in an environment which meets his needs and encourages him to extend himself. In this stage, the child actively seeks instruction from people whom he admires and respects in order to continue to develop himself. It is as if he has recognised the superiority of the teacher and chooses to submit to it in order to excel. He desires more and more difficult tasks in order to test his abilities, and the teacher can hardly utter an instruction before the child is ready to carry it out. The

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