Topics: Childhood, Developmental psychology, Critical period Pages: 7 (2254 words) Published: August 15, 2013
Philosophy – sensitive periods Define the term sensitive periods and link them appropriately to the child firs stage of development, Explain how you would support these sensitive periods during this crucial stage.|

A child in its unique way is a gift to the world. Each one of them different, marvellous and special… yet there are some universal characteristic that are common to all children, disregarding his/her own environment; culture, religion, social background and location that he/she has been brought up in . All of them have an absorbing mind and go through several stages of development and sensitivity periods which are natural process of human life. According to many studies the development of child begins during its conception and needs to be nurtured and protected from the embryonic beginning. This essay will observe and describe the sensitive stages that the child concords in process of development, importance of adults support, spiritual growth and his/her need to learn through freedom of choices and independence in an environment that the child is put in to grow and develop mentally as well as physically. The aim of this essay is to point the importance of these periods and consequences of not recognizing it. Also bearing in mind the Montessori child observations, the essay will contain descriptions and explanations of some of her substantial analysis of development of a child. (MCI, 2010, Module 1, Chp 2,)

In Maria Montessori observation and analyses she noted stages of growths which are divided into three planes of development. The first is an infant stage, which is characterized as unconscious learner through a hearing and seeing environment, and this stage is called Absorbent Mind. it is a phase from birth to three and the vital core for giving a child in this stage an uplift towards his/her future is nurture, time and routine for repetition in basic activities . As Montessori believed this period of an infant stage is where the urge for natural desire for life is put upon him/her and referrers to the term “Horne “ as an natural force, energy where no formal schooling or adults direction is influential but rather the given instincts to pick on what the child is seeing and hearing. (Montessori, 2007a, Chp 3,)

Conscious Absorbent Mind is the second phase of development and it is spread from about (3 -6 years) of a child’s life. The child starts to show his/her personality that has been stored during first three years of its life. Becomes more receptive to adult influence, more coordinated with movements and objects around it, and hands become the vital factor of learning in this period of development. During this stage they are more aware of company of others; they start building on social skills, playing with other children and can also be separated from the main care giver for a short period of time without feeling insecure or abandoned. (6-12 years) is an era of Later Childhood phase where the developments become more stable and child is able to manage and recoil on some of the basic emotions like feeling of happiness and sadness. They can reason the right from wrong and becomes more self conscious. Transformation (12-18 years) it is the third stage which indicates puberty; physical change and emotional sensitiveness of oneself. The instinctively thinking and openness is lost. The child’s confidence is shaken and enters stage where confusion in feelings prevails. It demands lots of emotional support and encouragement from all caregivers. Period of Adolescence indicates a doubtful and rebellious child who wants to pop out from its feeling of uncomforted and unwanted zone and explore the world. (Montessori 2007a, Chp.7,)

Sensitive periods are marked as a manifest of a child’s outcome later in adulthood. Given the benefit of heredity and infants own energy, that forms an individual child a characteristic of sensitive period and are demonstrated...

Bibliography: Montessori Centre International (2010) Module 1 Philosophy London: MCI.
Montessori, M (1966) The Secret of Childhood New York: Ballantine.
Montessori, M (2007a) The Absorbent Mind Amsterdam: Montessori Pierson Publishing Company
Montessori, M (2007b) The Discovery of the Child Amsterdam: Montessori Pierson Publishing Company
Ferrer-Chancy, M., McCrea, S.M.&Fugate, A.M. (2007) The Wonderful Three-year-old Universit of Florida IFAS Extension [online], available from: (date accessed 17/06/2013)
Gloeckler, P. & Niemeyer, J. (2010) Social-Emotional Environments: Teacher Practices in Two Toddler Classrooms Early Childhood Research and Practice [online], available from: (date accessed 19/06/2013)
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