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The Organizing Principle

Each stage of childhood has a life force that determines the general ways in which
human energy, capacities, inclinations, and interaction are structured and how they
manifest. We call this the Organizing Principle. The goal of each organizing principle is
well-being—and it determines how the child accesses their social, emotional, cognitive,
and spiritual capacities (Luvmour, 2006). Each organizing principle operates best in a
specific nurturing environment.


Communication

Communication creates the social world in which the child’s self-concept is developed and where their identity emerges. Nurturing optimal well-being by using developmentally appropriate language depends on understanding what the child is capable of valuing, in other words, how the child sees the world. What children value is most driven by the organizing principle and developmental changes that influence perceptions of the world and of self.


The Environment

A child’s environment centers on being-to-being relationships with the primary adult caregivers. Being-to-being learning occurs when the child observes actions (not from the words they hear). These observations build the child’s developmental competencies and gives them a safe and secure base from which to explore. This silent communication occurs between adult and child every day. Included are the adult’s non-verbal attitudes, gestures, and behaviors toward the child.