IMS Workshop Technology in Action

The IMS workshop examines common misbehavior scenarios with children, showing how to use the IMS technology to resolve the challenging moments of peril with children by the approach of control the environment, not the child. The magical moments indicated here show how some persons have used this technology in practice to resolve their own “moments of peril” to reveal the child’s true nature


Magical Moments with Children


Come over here…I have something to show you

SO she took the rabbit and walked towards the couch. (he basically redirected her - turned her attention to something that made her feel important and responsible - she loves the rabbits) Then my son raised both hands up in the air and said "yes, it worked" - I asked him what worked, and he whispered in my ear - "I got her away from my cuddly pillows"..... next thing that happens is his sister suggest they take the 2 rabbits outside so they can munch on some juicy grass and run and jump and off goes my son setting up the folded exercise rabbit fence....himself forgetting about the pillows and his favorite TV program.....

Thanks again Lee

S.S. (Texas)

Distraction, distraction, distraction

I think this all took me by surprise. I did as Lee said, precisely….There was a long period of just distraction, distraction, distraction. That’s all we did morning after morning, month after month. Giving up my control and trusting this inner guidance was extremely difficult for me…I thought the kids would get wise to all this “Come…”. But they always took my hand and went to Practical Life. Last week there were moments that I said, “Hmmmm…something feels different”.

But it was not until Monday morning when the three teachers were in the school’s hallway, staying out of their space, did we see their own inner guidance come forth. During that time they began to self-discipline themselves. Apparently I was so busy distracting, and contending with Mark and Gary’s antics that I did not see it coming. It feels like someone flipped a switch. Today I stood in amazement watching children self direct in a calm and peaceful manner. It is exactly as Maria Montessori described her classrooms. It is exactly as Lee said.

I am not reminding the kindergartners to get their language books out. I am not saying, ”Walk”. There is no need to remind to use a soft voice. Everyone is busy. It’s just weird. The week was very different for Mark and Gary. There wasn’t a need to butt heads with them, although I am on my guard….I can tell you firsthand that the days of controlling little children are over for me.

R.H. (Kingston, NY)

Lesson Presentation with Letters

I would also like you to know that I used the sandpaper letters as shown by yourself and have had some wonderful moments with children as they have been discovering new sounds and words. I used the exact example you gave us with the sounds "u", "c", "p", the discovery with this girl of "u", "p", together making "up" happened as you said it would. It was a delightful moment and this girl has gone on to many great things with sound since. Thank you!! I may have been more excited than her on that first day!!

J.W. (Victoria, Australia)

Reflective Language

...Something else about REFLECTIVE LANGUAGE, Lee. I often feel foolish doing it when my two boys are arguing. I always feel that they might get exasperated at my repeating their own words to each other and snap back at me. But, somehow, they never do...they start realizing new and different ways to work things out and they actually solve their problems very creatively and end up lovingly reminding each other that they didn't want to be mean.

I have been close to tears just watching them and really proud of controlling my own feelings of inadequacy and fear of ridicule!

M.D.P. (Mexico)

Close your Eyes

April, age four, came to me one morning. "I don't know what to do." I offered to show her several different works, but her answer was always "No, not that." So then I asked her to sit on the line, close her eyes, think about the work she would most like to do, then get up and go choose that work. Within thirty seconds she was engaged in Practical Life. Later that day I observed April and Meagan, also four, wandering hand-in-hand around the environment. Just as I was about to adjust my position for eye contact, April said to Meagan, "Let's sit on the line. Now, close your eyes . . ."

S.H. (Buffalo Grove, IL)

Where is Mommy?

Four-year-old Albert is very attached to Mom (translation: Mom is very attached to Albert!) One morning, shortly after the Indianapolis workshop, Mom brought Albert, clinging and in tears, into our classroom. (Morning arrival is drop-off from cars, but Mom likes to walk Albert in, late.) She headed straight for the lead teacher, Albert attached at hip, and began her usual conversation: Will-he-be-all-right-I-will-call-in-a-while-does-he-stay-so-unhappy-should-I-leave-him-etc. At which the lead teacher called to me: "Sue, could you help Albert? He's having a hard time."

Now, this was not the situation that we had role-played and discussed at the workshop, where Mom was invited into the classroom and shown work, etc. But I did the best I could do under the circumstances with the skills I had learned, and I played the hand I had been dealt by the lead teacher. I went to Albert, and simply said, "Albert, take my hand." Surprisingly, he did! I followed immediately with "Come with me, I have something to show you." We headed straight for Practical Life where I showed him a bead board work. Albert quickly engaged. The lead teacher finally disengaged Mom, who was about to interrupt Albert with a good-bye hug - but fortunately, I was able to silently wave her off. A short time later, Albert looked around for Mom, asking, "Where is Mommie?" I replied, "She went to work." He thought this over for a moment, then smiled at me and said, "Look, Miss Susan! I'm not crying any more!" AMEN!

Susan Hutchins (Buffalo Grove, IL)

Controlling Object Between Two Children

Martha, age six, and Julie, age five, were busy making soap bubbles together. Considering the fact that Martha can be very bossy, the work seemed to be going well for them. Then suddenly, their loud and angry voices caught my attention. An argument over something was in progress - both girls were holding on to the egg beater, one trying to get it away from the other, and Martha’s free hand was about to land a blow! I calmly walked over to them and took hold of the eggbeater. I said nothing, but they said everything! Apparently, the argument was over whose turn it was to beat the mixture. I continued to hold on to the eggbeater as they vented their anger at each other and at me.

Then, abruptly, Julie let go with a hot "Fine! Then I'm not going to do this with you anymore!" And she stomped away. The instant Julie let go, I let go - which left Martha holding the eggbeater and looking like what she had was not what she wanted after all. As I moved away from the situation, Martha went after Julie with a sincere effort to make up. Minutes later, these girls were back at work, having figured out a way to share.

Susan Hutchins (Buffalo Grove, IL)