"The child has a type of mind that goes beyond concrete limits. It has the power of imagining things. This power of visualising things that are not present to the eye, reveals a higher type of mind. An object I can see is an easy thing to know, but when I have to make an image for myself (to imagine) it is more difficult. If the mind of man were restricted only to the things he could see, it would be very limited indeed. Man sees without seeing."
Now that Bear can talk he can tell stories. By listening to him I can find out what he loves and the things that are filling his head. It is also an exercise for my imagination to see what he sees...
"b'u'lding ''ains" (building trains)
"''ain on ''i'ge" (train on bridge)
"'ed ''ain on ''i'ge" (red train on bridge)
"''ian ''ASH int' ditch!!" (train CRASHED into the ditch!!)
"c'ane pic' ''ain up. Puts ''ain on ''acks" (Crane picks the train up. Puts the train on the tracks)
"''een ''ain on b'i'ge" (green train on the bridge)
"making 'ong ''ain. Lots pass''ger 'a''''ges" (making a long train with lots of passenger carriages)
"''ain '''ough 'ignal. Woo woo!! ''ain 'coming!!" (train through signal. Woo woo!! A train's coming")
"Playing with toys and imagination through fairy tales represent two needs of that special period of life: the first, to place oneself in direct relation with the environment, to master the environment, and by this a great mental development is acquired by the child. The other reveals the strength of the imagination, so much so that he turns it on his toys. If we then give him real things to imagine about, this is a help to him and places him in more accurate relation with his environment too"
Bear loves trains and soaks up anything about trains that he's exposed to. He doesn't mind if it is real or fiction - he loves it equally. All of it becomes the substance of his stories and imaginative play.
"Everyone realises that the child likes to imagine, but he is given tales and toys as the only help. If the child can realise a fairy and visualise fairyland, it is not difficult for him to visualise America etc. ... imagination is endeavouring to find the truth of things, a fact which is often forgotten. If in the child's environment the word "America" or "World" had never been mentioned by anyone, then it might be difficult for him to show interest in it, but since he hears the word it enters his mind and he clothes it with imagination."
Since I've noticed Bear's particular passion for trains I have tried to replace the good with better...
Thomas the tank engine is ubiquitous. The original Rev Awdry stories are very much focused on the real work of the trains and they are beautifully illustrated. However Bear doesn't need the trains to talk and have faces to find them fascinating. He still likes to look at these and that's fine - I love watching the old DVDs as well. But I have tried to supplement his library with things that are real.
Two favourite books base on reality: Freight train has great vocabulary (albeit American vocabulary) and nice realistic pictures. The Rain Train has a lovely poem and beautiful pictures. It's my favourite bedtime book at the moment too.
Our most watched videos on youtube:
I don't know who you are Mike Armstrong but thank you!
"The mind is not the passive entity one imagines, the mind of man is a flame, an all-devouring flame, it is never still, but always active"
It inspires me to keep hunting for more and more fuel to feed his little flame.
My name is Vicky I am wife to Ranger and mum to two boys - Bear (2) and Fox (8 months). Somehow I stumbled across Montessori and now my goal is to raise and educate my children with a Montessori philosophy in country NSW Australia.