Transition from unconscious creator to conscious worker.
Maria Montessori coined the first 6 years of a child's life as their first plane of development, there are four planes of development in total. She also noted that children from 0-6 years had what she called "The absorbent mind" If you want to know a little more about the absorbent mind in general you read a little on my Instagram here.
Within this first plane of development there is two subplanes. The first subplane from 0-3 years in which the absorbent mind functions as an "Unconscious creator" and the second subplane from 3-6 in which it now operates as a "Conscious worker".
Unconscious creator describes the child who is creating connections, creating new skills, creating who they are as a person. Unconscious referring to the fact they are not conscious of the fact they are learning. They are not consciously making decisions about what to learn, how or why.
They are being driven by an inner force known as the Horme. (I'll do a post about the Mneme, Horme and Nebulae soon!) Another characteristic of this stage is that the child cannot be manipulated and reached for he is not choosing what to create and learn, his Horme is driving him to it and the Horme cannot be reached or influenced.
This child of 0-3 is an Unconscious creator.
"He learns everything without knowing he is learning it, and in doing so he passes little by little from the unconscious to the conscious, treading always in the paths of joy and love." - Maria Montessori
Conscious worker describes the child who now understands that he is learning and is now using the skills and personality developed and created before, to learn and interact with his environment as he chooses. He is no longer driven by his Horme, but by his own desire and will.
He is no longer just creating new skills and traits, but he is working to perfect them. As well as using them to gain mastery of his self and understanding of his environment. The conscious worker is always working and busy in one way or another.
The child of 3-6 is a Conscious worker.
"Thus it happens that at the age of three, life seems to begin again; for now consciousness shines forth in all its fullness and glory." - Maria Montessori
So the transition from Unconcious creator to Conscious worker happens around the age of 3. Whilst it does not happen overnight, you will one day observe that your child is different. He is now busy, planning and gaining mastery. He is now a new being, different to the one who was around in the first 3 years of life.
As Jax is turning 3, I can see the change happening. You can see there's now a clear reason for his actions, there is methodical work happening with his environment and he is now more assured of himself and his abilities. He is full of personality that he has created and is now growing.
He is still absorbing his environment like a sponge, but he is conscious that he is learning. I cannot describe it but there is a different look in the eye of the unconscious child who has no idea they are learning and the conscious child who knows and chooses his learning.
The child of 3 is commonly described as wanting to do everything for themselves. And this is, in part at least, because of the transition they have made. They have created the skills needed, and now they choose to perfect and use them to learn what they want to learn. The child of 3 is craving independence because they now are developing their will and they are driving their own learning.
"So, from the age of three till six, being able to now to tackle his environment deliberately and consciously, he begins a period of real constructiveness." - Maria Montessori
If you want to delve deeper into the absorbent mind, the unconscious creator and conscious worker, and the Horme, Mneme and Nebulae, I recommend reading one of Maria Montessori's most famous own works The Absorbent Mind. It is not as difficult to read as you might think!
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I believe Montessori is for everybody, I want to help everyone bring a little more Montessori into their homes and lives.
Montessoraus mama. x