"No man is free who is not master of
himself." ~ Epictetus A
flower begins with a seed sprouting from the earth with the seed leaves coming
out of the ground first. The plant
grows a stalk, and sends out more leaves.
On the stalk or branches of the plant, small buds form and are protected
by the calyx of the flower. One
day when the bud is large enough, the days are warm enough, and there is the
right amount of sunlight and rain, the calyx begins to open, and the flower appears.
petals of the flower begin to unfold from the calyx. The pistil and the stamen become visible. Bees and birds visit the flower and
spread the sticky yellow pollen from the stamen from flower to flower,
fertilizing the plants. After
fertilization, at the base of the pistil, the ovary begins to swell to produce
the fruit, in which seeds for new plants are embedded.
plant grows, a flower blooms, and fruit ripens, all on an observable and
predictable sequence for each species of plant. Weather, water, time and location are some of the factors
that influence the growth and maturity rate of a plant.
are more complex than plants, but each human personality unfolds in accordance
to a pattern of growth.
be a help to life." That is the
Montessori teachers' credo.
be a help to a plant, we plant it in fertile soil in an appropriate
climate. For example, without a
special environment orange trees won't grow in Arkansas. To be a help to a plant, we assure that
the seedlings are watered, weeded, and protected from being trampled. As young plants grow, we protect
them from deer and rabbits. We
stake the tomatoes. As the plants
mature, we check the plants for signs of disease. We prune if a shoot makes a plant unstable, or nip the buds
if a plant overproduces.
we care for plants, we don't pull up a plant and look at its roots to see if it's
growing. We watch and
observe. We don't have to run
tests on a plant to see if it's growing normally. We watch and observe.
the plant matures, we harvest and
we enjoy the fruit of the plant, and the fruit of our labors.
be a help to life.
water, weed, protect, strengthen, harvest. Obvious work for helping plants. A plant's success is ensured in a garden with a
need a place where they are watched, nourished, protected, and strengthened
until adulthood, until they are masters of themselves.
a help to life. Watch. Nourish. Protect.
Strengthen. Then enjoy the
week: Parents are Real People