Observation Window: First Days of Discovery

Montessori-style Discovery

A little boy not quite three years old worked so very hard today building the Pink Tower. Back and forth he patiently crossed the room, gathering his material the way he had been shown. When he had finished carrying each of the ten cubes slowly over to his rug one by one and erecting the tower, he stood very still and very close to it. He didn’t touch it with his body, but explored it instead from top to bottom with only his eyes and a serious expression. Next, he puffed up his chest, pulled his shoulders back, smiled in the direction of the tower and said aloud to himself, “It’s tall!”

He removed the smallest cube from the top of his tower. Making the same stretching motions again with his body, he then quietly stated, “Tall.” The adorable child repeated this process just as if he were a scientist … observing a specimen, examining its characteristics carefully, and then defining what he saw by declaring “Tall” again, whenever he removed the next “top” cube.

Eventually only the largest two cubes remained stacked on the boy’s rug. At this point, he positioned himself even closer to the now very low tower. He bent his upper body at the waist leaning downward toward it, as if he were peering down the side of a mountain. A few seconds later, he popped up, quite erect. This time, forcing his shoulders straight up tightly and elongating his body again as best he could, he made his discovery known as he exclaimed with delight, “I …AM… TALL!

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