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Signs that You're Entering the Second Plane

Let's talk about Nora for a minute. There are signs starting to creep in. They don't happen everyday or even every week. They don't all happen at once. But they are there. Signs that things are changing - signs of the second plane of development. See Nora is now just four short months away from turning 6! How is it that my first Montessori from birth baby is already so big?! I don't know. But we are entering new and uncharted waters with her.

Signs to look for as your Montessori child transitions to the second plane of development

Dr. Montessori found that child development could be roughly split into six year chunks. During those years certain qualities could be seen in the children. These qualities dictate how a child learns and what they are most interested in learning. These chucks are called the "planes of development." You can read more about the second plane of development here. 

As Nora approaches 6-years-old, there are signs that the second plane is upon us. Somedays we see lots of signs, others none. This is definitely a shift and not an overnight process. Some of the things we have noticed include: 

  • Loss of the sense of outward order: where toddler Nora would always put away her toothbrush, toys, and follow a routine, Nora today can be hit or miss. Some days things remain neat, other days everything is left everywhere 
  • Sense of Justice: "That's not fair!" Theres a new sense that she is looking for and understanding when things aren't equal or fair in everyday life 
  • Deep Why and How Questions: Where Nora was interested in what something was just a few years ago, Nora now is often asking why something is the way it is, or how something works. There is a longing for deeper information, bigger questions, and more abstract thinking. 
  • Project Based Work: Nora is starting to create her own work and plan for work that she is going to do. For example, the other day she came home and wanted to make a book. So she spent a whole lot of time gathering materials, thinking about what it would be, talking to me about things she would include, and coming up with her whole plan. Then, she took 2 days implementing that plan (not continuously) and creating the book. 
  • Less interest in Practical life without a Purpose: Less and less do we see Nora engaging in practical life work just for the sake of doing practical life work. She will happily engage when she knows why something has to be done. "We need to cook dinner before our guests come." or "I need to show Gus how to do this." Basically, she is happy once she is committed to the purpose of the activity, but no longer interested just for the sake of doing it. 
  • Noticing the social group: All of a sudden there is a greater awareness of what the people around her are doing. She wants to go with the group, be with the group, lead the group. 
  • Limit Testing: there's been some more sass lately. As her guide said, "she's coming into her power."
As much as I will miss my tiny baby girl, this is a whole new and and exciting phase. She really is becoming her own person in so many beautiful ways that it is exciting to see where she will go from here. 

Signs to look for as your Montessori child transitions to the second plane of development

Have you noticed signs of the second plane with your child? What have they been? 

Signs to look for as your Montessori child transitions to the second plane of development


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