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DOUBLE TAP TO ZOOM WITH PHONE OR TABLET The Theories as a Framework to Support Children  physiological needs: air, water, and food for survival, as well as clothing and shelter for protection from the elements safety needs: being able to trust your environment, including adults and peers; protection, stability, and order love and belonging needs: family affection, relationships, and peers’ friendship esteem needs: self-esteem, confidence, achievement, responsibility, mastery, independence, respect of others, and respect by others self-actualization needs: realizing personal potential, creativity, spontaneity, self-fulfillment, lack of prejudice, morality, and acceptance of facts; and seeking personal growth and problem solving In addition to his basic hierarchy, Maslow also discusses the signifi- cance of cognitive and the aesthetic needs. Cognitive needs are the desires to know and to understand. They initially are seen in late infancy and childhood and include impulses to satisfy curi- osity, to know, to explain, and to understand (Maslow 1987). Maslow states that children are naturally curious, fascinated, and absorbed. He believes cognitive needs are closely tied to basic needs since the desire to know and understand is often just as urgent as other “basic” needs. Maslow asserts that children are ready to learn and will learn when their basic needs are met. Aesthetic needs include a desire for beauty, order, and symmetry. Maslow believes a craving for beauty “is seen almost universally in healthy children” COPYRIGHTED MATERIAL Maslow work on a humanistic approach to the education of young children. He first introduced the “hierarchy of needs” in 1954 and continued to develop them as a way to explain the importance of the steps required for a person to achieve self-actualization, or reach her fullest potential (Maslow 1971). This hierarchy of needs is often represented in the form of a pyramid, with the largest and most fundamental levels of human needs at the bot- tom and the need for self-actualization at the top. The bottom two levels, physiological needs and safety needs, are called basic needs. These are the physical needs required to sustain life and essential psychological needs for security and safety. The top levels of love and belonging, self-esteem, and self-actualization, are called growth needs. As children satisfy the basic needs for food and shelter, they progress to a higher level in the pyramid where love, personal esteem, and acceptance take priority. This is what Maslow labels as gaining “self-actualization” or “self-fulfillment.” In other words, self-actualization is the human need to be the best that each of us can be. The following is an overview of the characteristics seen at each level of Maslow’s hierarchy of human needs:   21