FondsGoetheanum: Childhood

Keys to understanding Children

Careful observation of children’s outer appearance and psychological behaviour allows us to understand better their being and to encourage their development.

There are children with wide eyes, who are in the world but dreaming, full of imagination. They have large heads, which seem to dominate the rest of their bodies. In contrast, there are children with small heads who are very skilled in their movements. They are more interested in technical things.
Children of a stocky build are often more introverted than those with a finer, more delicate constitution. They are extremely sensitive to outer impressions. Children with blond curly hair and blue, clear and radiant eyes are also a unique category. They often have more difficulty remembering past events, while children with dark eyes and brown or black hair have the problem of not being able to forget.
Finally, in everyday we encounter life incredibly restless children who cannot concentrate and are greatly distracted by their environment. This agitation is also reflected in uncontrolled actions and movements that tend to be impulsive. Other children have a calmer demeanour, almost too calm, and struggle to get truly moving. For them, sensory perception is reduced.
The many strongly diverse characters of children’s constitutions are like polar images of a whole, which complement each other, creating a picture of the full human being.
The child thus seeks a balance between its disposition and inherited one-sidedness: between dreaming and waking, between rest and movement, between remembering and forgetting, and between withdrawal from and opening out to the world.

Dr. Erdmut J. Schädel. Pediatrician