BROWSE BY Category: Sensitive observation

Biting

Biting is instinctual. While in early infancy biting is rather exploratory, toddlers bite when frustrated, angry, or tired. If I have to deal with a chronic biter, I must use a sensitive but strong strategy. Both ‘victim’ and ‘aggressor’ need to feel that the adult is in charge and can protect them. I say to the biter, calmly but firmly, ” I will not let you bite any child or big person. If you feel like biting, here are things (teething rings, rubber or plastic objects, etc.) you can bite.”
I watched him very closely in order to predict what would trigger his aggressiveness and prevent him from doing it. I would hold him firmly but not punitively, telling him that I would not let him bite and that he needed to learn to trust me.

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Crying

Very young infants cry when they feel discomfort from hunger, pain, feeling too cold or too warm, sudden changes in position, transitional times, and too much stimuli from environment. Respect the child’s right to express feelings, or moods, whether crying or smiling. Try to find and eliminate discomfort.

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One Point Of View

The key word in Magda Gerber’s philosophy is RESPECT . . . respect for your baby and respect for yourself, the parent. An awareness of your child’s point of view, as well as your own, will greatly help in building a respectful relationship.

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Dear Magda

Discipline is Learning and Nurturing Combined 

Children, like adults, need rules and guidelines. I conceptualize discipline as being a system based on and facilitative of mutual respect among family members. We could easily exchange the word ‘discipline’ for the word ‘educaring’—they are both a combination of learning and nurturance. The goal is inner or self-discipline, self-confidence, and joy in the act of cooperation.  

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Original RIE Manual

Toys

Toys should be sturdy but simple. I do not like busy toys. I like busy children manipulating their toys in many imaginative ways. Include objects that are safe and simple. These objects should be basic, able to be manipulated in many ways, and not requiring adult help or supervision. They should require the child to be active, not passive.

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Magda’s Writings

Magda Gerber’s Basic RIE Principles

Respect is the Guideline of RIE’s Philosophy. The Educarer shows respect, for example, by not picking up an infant without telling him beforehand, by talking directly to him, and not over him, and by waiting for the child’s response. 

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