THE MONTESSORI METHOD - online book

Scientific Methods As Applied To Child Education In "the Children's Houses"

Home Main Menu Order Support About Search



Share page  


Previous Contents Next

TEACHING READING AND WRITING 253
the truly natural proceeding necessary to such prepara­tion. He has, besides, the preconception that the devia­tion of a line, as well as the inexactness with which the child traces it, are due to " the mind and the eye, not to the hand," and so he wearies himself for weeks and months in explaining the direction of lines and in guid­ing the vision of the idiot.
It seems as if Seguin felt that a good method must start from a superior point, gRometry; the intelligence of the child is only considered worthy of attention in its relation to abstract things. And is not this a common defect ?
Let us observe mediocre men; they pompously assume erudition and disdain simple things. Let us study the clear thought of those whom we consider men of genius. Newton is seated tranquilly in the open air; an apple falls from the tree, he observes it and asks, " Why ?" Phenomena are never insignificant; the fruit which falls and universal gravitation may rest side by side in the mind of a genius.
If Newton had been a teacher of children he would have led the child to look upon the worlds on a starry night, but an erudite person might have felt it necessary first to prepare the child to understand the sublime cal­culus which is the key to astronomy— Galileo Galilei ob­served the oscillation of a lamp swung on high, and dis­covered the laws of the pendulum.
In the intellectual life simplicity consists in divesting one's mind of every preconception, and this leads to the discovery of new things, as, in the moral life, humility and material poverty guide us toward high spiritual con­quests.
If we study the history of discoveries, we will find that
Previous Contents Next