About Conductive Education
Pető’s educational approach is a unified system that consists of many interrelated elements which are used in a particular synchronization. Some main elements can be distinguished; however they must be used in their interrelated context.
CE is organized and carried out by Conductor-Teachers (“Conductors”). A Conductor in CE is like the conductor of an orchestra, who is responsible for the overall effect obtained by carefully orchestrating the contributions made by the individual musicians, each of whom nevertheless remains responsible for his or her own playing.
Conductors work within their homogeneous team; each utilizing an interdisciplinary approach that benefits all aspects of development, including abilities related to communication, vocalization, socialization, self-care, volition, affect, cognition, locomotion, and manipulation.
The Conductive Group holds the best learning environment to its members. All groups are heterogeneous by diagnosis and age but always dynamic-ensuring a pulling power to all students. The various groups offer perceivable and realistic perspectives to all members.
The Daily Routine consists age appropriate regular (normal) requirements, designed to encompass the skills students needed in everyday life. Learning is thus integrated into the requirements of daily life throughout the day. The daily routine brings children face to face with the expectations that society places routinely on their typically developing peers.
Facilitation is an educational term in CE: any single condition that helps learning, such as educational strategies, equipment, physical manipulation of the child, verbal, social help etc. The Conductor uses them is a particular synchronization to assist students in reaching their goals without developing dependency.
Some typical CE equipment are furniture with slats or “ladder backs” that allows a child to hold on while standing up, crouching down, or walking.
The Rhythmic Intention is a unique way of facilitation used in CE. Using special verbal commands, the conductor engages the child’s inner voice to give directions to himself. The commands prepare the child mentally to approach a task (to make a decision to act). The task is then carried out to rhythmic counting or singing. In this way, the conductor orchestrates the child’s learning by integrating movement with verbal, cognitive, and sensory inputs, while teaching self-sufficiency. The rhythmic intention is made up of the combined energy of will, effort and an internal rhythmic harmony.
During the Task Series children learn to perform age-appropriate motor coordination tasks. The Conductor sets goals and breaks the tasks into meaningful, understandable elements. These micro tasks are created into a task series. The various task series create a longitudinal and spiral program in structure. Although the tasks are the same for all the children, the way they are carried out may differ from child to child.
Parental Involvement in order to maximize students’ learning. In the children’s young age this is realized by intense, systematic hands on parental coaching. The conductor will encourage and enable family members to become cooperative participants in their child’s development, mainly by having them apply what is being practiced in CE at home. This is important, because the lessons, methods, and activities learned through CE must be internalized and become an ongoing lifestyle.
All of these positive elements inspire children to attain great heights of accomplishment. The particular effectiveness of this education system derives from the coordinated combination of all these elements.