Consistency and Routines!
Consistency leads to success. Children thrive with routines. They’re some of our favorite words. While children are still creating self-discipline and an inner sense of order, it’s up to us to keep things consistent and follow a routine, to help children along the path.
But what about when things don’t work? What then?
Oh, it’s so hard. What any of us wouldn’t give to know that things turn out, what’s going to help a child over a hurdle and be successful with this next step.
It’s a balance, as so many things are. This isn’t a cop out. We all wish we had The Answer, all the answers, all the time. But even Maria Montessori called her work with children an experiment. We can set up conditions for success, but they’re children, not computers, and it’s parenting and guiding, not coding, and they have the right to choose to follow their own will, not the requirement of adherence to our will. We can’t always predict what’s going to happen.
We are consistent and we follow a routine. There are ups and downs, easier days and more learning full days, but are things moving in the right direction? Are we moving toward success and independence?
We don’t continue with something when it’s not working. We observe. What are the children showing us? What do they need? Time, modeling, a change?
Consistency and routines help a child toward success; that doesn’t mean every day is going to be seamless and easy, that doesn’t mean the routine will never change. Sometimes the routine needs to change. The children will show us what they need. Sometimes things don’t work. Sometimes we set up the conditions for success — the modeling, the resources, the time, the patience, the assistance — and it still just doesn’t work.
We don’t keep at it. We look at what’s working, what isn’t. It’s not the children’s fault, it’s our opportunity. The highest consistency is our own, looking for what we can do to help the children more effectively.
Consistency and routine don’t mean sticking to what doesn’t work. It means consistently looking for what will work and sticking with it until it doesn’t, and then trying again.
Source: Baan Dek
West Side Montessori is an independent, accredited Montessori school educating children 13 months through 8th grade (preschool, kindergarten, elementary and middle school) with locations at 13587 Roachton Rd in Perrysburg, Ohio, and 7115 W. Bancroft Street in Toledo, Ohio.