• The safe place
    The safe place
    imagination and play, safety, basic trust
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    Maria Montessori speaks of the child coming into the world as an absorbent mind, ready to expand out and embrace the universe within them, these genetically inherited capacities. If the world damages them, if they're not given the safe space but are damaged or traumatized, they close up into a tight defense against a world they can't trust. So you're going to get an entirely different structure of knowledge of a world, a much impaired neural development and an impaired interactive ability, the child will not be able to interact with his world because they will be defending themselves against it all the time, against a world they can't trust. Organized play such as teams against other teams or competing against other teams crop up somewhere around 11. There's no doubt of that. If you just watch as the child before that period will be playing other forms of group activity, but not competitive. The competition comes in around 11 or 12 as a pre-puberty and puberty form of activity. You can't keep children from that period, from grouping together in some form of competitive activity. They'll create their own sports.