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Monday 28 November 2016

A thought for the day about Mária Hári’s thoughts

When the Foundation for Conductive Education published Mária Hári on Conductive Pedagogy in 2004 Andrew Sutton sent a copy to fellow conductor Raphaela Roß and I with the hope that we would review it for him. I do not remember whether we actually sent him anything on paper that he could use but I certainly read the book. You can tell just how thoroughly I read it because that original copy is full of notes that I made during that first reading, and since. Not only notes in the margin but the empty pages in the back are also full with my scribblings.

This is a list of the things that I wrote there –

While reading through the papers of Dr Mária Hári many familiar phrases leap out at me from the pages. These phrases caused me to stop and think that if parents knew all this from the mouth of Mária Hári they would understand a lot better what a conductive upbringing is. And maybe also if non-conductors working in CE read this they too could understand better and team work would be easier.

Maybe a short book of Hári-isms would help to remind us all at different times what our conductive aims are.

P 42 - As a conductor I too believe that Conductive Education should be practiced in groups. This is how it was developed in Hungary, with the group as the basis of the learning system.

In my own experience some aspects of Conductive Education have only been possible when I have worked with the children in their own home – ‘Constant change of environment, different treatments at night and at day cannot be permitted.’

There are many points in these papers that would assist families to understand that Conductive Education is not a therapy to which they send their children but a lifestyle for the child ‘to render as normal an education as possible, travelling in the streets, self support and work.’

‘In order to bring about equilibrium between child and the environment, we do not change the environment but adapt the child’s constitution.’

The notes stop abruptly with a quote at the end of the page. I wish that I could remember whether I wrote more notes elsewhere or whether the project was abandoned.

Scattered throughout the book there are underlined sections and notes in the margins and it is these sections that I am occasionally publishing on my blog under the title  Mária Háris Thoughts for the Day.

I will carry on with these Hári quotations and if any reader has any memories of her words that they wish me to include, please let me know.

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