When I was in the classroom, I loved returning to school after the winter break.
We had ended the previous semester with warm, loving celebrations of light. The month of December brought closure on a semester of learning and projects. The final week was spent giving and receiving Secret Friend notes and tiny expressions of love and caring, culminating in a great mass gift-giving in which children demonstrated how very well they knew their classmates by the simple offerings they gave. We said goodbye, looking forward to time with our families and a break from our normal routines.
All those good feelings came back to school with us and January was a time when everything about our classroom felt familiar and calm. Happy to return to the order of the space, with just a few new items on the shelves to pique their curiosity, the children settled quickly into new inquiries with a focused attention born out of familiarity, competence, and confidence. Those first few weeks were idyllic: calm, peaceful, and focused.
After the challenges of 2020, I wonder what this period will be like for many of you. Will students be returning to familiar classrooms, will this be the first time they are seeing each other this school year, or will distance learning remain the norm in the midst of this turbulent pandemic that has rocked our world?
As a result of the pandemic, 2020 brought an almost frantic pivot for us all…and now, in 2021, I am seeking peace, determined to create greater space for calm in every corner of my life.
Achieving peace will require intention and commitment. It will insist upon self-discipline. It will demand new habits, actions, and activities. I’ll be called upon to be creative, courageous and strong.
Dr. Montessori’s vision for a peaceful revolution is carried out in Cosmic Education. Through her Cosmic vision, Montessori sought to develop awareness of the natural flow of the Universe: a flow based on a dance of giving and receiving, each entity playing its part and making its unique contribution.
I trust you’ll find ways to bring peace into your life and into the lives of your children. Teaching Peace is a noble goal, a satisfying aim, and the true work of Montessori Cosmic Education.
“Peace is a practical principle of human civilization and social organization that is based on the very nature of man. Peace does not enslave him; rather, it exalts him.... And because it is based on man’s nature, it is a constant, a universal principle that applies to all human beings. This principle must be our guide in building a science of peace and educating men for peace.”
Education and Peace