by Laura Berthiaume August 15, 2022 1 min read
Have you ever worried there's something wrong with your child because they just won't sit still?
Maybe you've questioned if you're "doing it right" when you offer Montessori activities and your child doesn't sit there quietly for an hour+.
You're not doing it wrong and this is normal.
Social media can paint an unrealistic picture of quiet, focused children that can make the best of us feel like failures.
There's a reason Montessori classrooms allow free movement around the room.
Children, and really anyone (yes, even adults!), need movement to think.
Science journalist, Annie Murphy Paul, talks about this in her new book, The Extended Mind.
She explains that humans have evolved to move.
We're meant to move but somehow we've gotten this idea that serious thinking can only happen when we're quiet and still.
Movement enhances learning - it improves memory, helps us pay attention, and helps us understand more deeply.
On top of that, it actually requires mental bandwidth to inhibit our natural urge to move.
Those are mental resources that could be used to help thinking and problem solving.
Allowing our children ability to move freely as needed, is essential to their learning.
WHEN To Offer Focused Activities
Katie, the creator of our at-home program, has also shared this tip with parents in the program:
If you're offering an activity that does require focus or the need for your child to sit, offer it after they've had plenty of opportunity to move around, maybe after a walk or some time outdoors.
This is another great example of following the child. Your child knows when they need to move and when they're ready to sit & focus.
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