Have you ever spoken to a child about their favorite subject? The hidden depths of knowledge behind a statement as simple as “I like race cars” or “I like dogs” can be astounding when you start to speak to the kid and see exactly how much they’ve absorbed. This can be referred to as montessori sensitive periods, where a child’s brain focuses intently on one area or skill.
Walking and talking are two of the most common periods that occur early in the child’s life, as their brain turns to those tasks. It can be disguised as a tantrum or other behavioral problem if the environment is not tailored towards that skill, but if you as the parent understand it you can help your child thrive and flourish.
A common sensitive period involves movement, where at around 2 years, your child will start to learn to crawl and use their hands. They might play with toys in a different way and start grasping and holding more, as well as crawl and pull themselves up. After that (anywhere from 3 to 6 years) they will start holding and releasing items, walking, jumping, and starting to move like a normal adult.
Language works the same way, as children start making sounds with their mouths, learning to turn those sounds into words and letters, and maybe even starting to read. They might even pick a hobby that they are into and start pursuing it with a fervor that will make anyone smile. These sensitive periods need to be encouraged and supported by the parents in order to ensure the child grows into a healthy and developed adult.
Make sure to create an environment that allows movement and reading, as well as exploration, and your child will do the rest.