Monday, November 29, 2010

Lessons Last Week

Our time has been very spontaneous around here!  They say, "I want to work."  And off we go!!  This may be my longest post this year!

The tots are loving matching these days.  This work is really for big sis (thus the appeal) for initial sounds, but we find a good purpose for picture to picture matching.  I love watching them work together.

I took this photo while playing I Spy with Bean.  She likes playing this in the car, too!  Makes the trip to ballet a little more purposeful!   Pictured here, we did this for the initial sounds /h/, /r/, and /m/.  Below is the lesson, from my album. 

I Spy With My Little Eye
General~  Language
Specific~  Oral/Auditory Development

3 little objects

Direct~  To enjoy the sounds of our language.  To become aware that words are composed of sounds.  To listen for the sounds in words.
Indirect~  To hear the component sounds of words
Sounds games


First year Montessori student

 Presentation of Lesson

Invite the child, and tell them the name of the game
Lay the three items out on the workspace horizontally
“I spy with my little eye, an object that begins with the sound ___”
Continue with all three
Invite the child to repeat
Return work to shelf

Work of the Teacher
Points of Emphasis
Saying I spy with my little eye an object that begins with ___
Pronounce sound correctly and clearly


Name of the game
Name of the objects
Points of Interest
I Spy Game

Work of the Child
Points of Conscious
Words begin with sounds
Words are made up of sounds

 Control of Error

Another child


Change objects

Playing the game outside and inside the classroom with the environment
Ending sounds
Middle sounds

On black Friday, we stayed home.  It was wonderful, and we got a lot of work in.  I introduced the winter sets basket.  It certainly called to them!!!  

We also got our tree this weekend.  I gave Bean a lesson on how to water it.  She was concentrating so hard in this picture.  What a big job!

To learn the names of the letters in her name, I made this work from our movable alphabet.  I simply traced her name, colored it in, and kept the letters in this cute little bag.  Even her sisters tried it!

Peanut loves her knobbed cylinders.  They will most likely stay out year round because of their popularity and the fact that sensorial is the basis for so many other areas.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Displaying Children's Art

I have been reading a ton of Reggio books lately, and my favorite idea for my home is showing the child's art in a beautiful way.  It is helping with the refrigerator clutter, too!  The first photo's frames are from IKEA, and there is no glass!  The second photo shows an art hanger from Land of Nod.  They love their art gallery!!!

Amazing Etsy Find, Scoop and Rainbow Balls

I just love this. I'm always on the hunt for inexpensive, quality toys and materials. Teaching and mothering, I don't always have the time to make everything from scratch.  The girls all went right to this. This Etsy shop is Waldorf based, the items are lovely.  I asked for an extra bowl for Montessori Transferring. Here is the link; Blackbeary Mountain

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Hand Turkeys

We are opting for some hokey holiday art!  Hey, we live in Massachusetts not far from where the Pilgrims had the first thanksgiving.  We HAVE to make hand turkeys, right?

The girls got a huge kick out of painting on their own hands, and it was so fun to get messy!  We worked right on the kitchen floor for easy clean up.  The photos tell the story....

Size, Shape, and Color Sorting

This is the remainder of the insets I purchased from Discount School Supply. I saw that they came in three sizes and put them together for this sorting work for sensorial. She is sorting the color, the shape, and the size. The labels read: Small, Medium, Large. Red, yellow, blue. More labels with the shape's name will come out later on. When laid out, it was so beautiful. She liked how long it was, showing that it was even longer than her body in this photo.

Here is the link to my original post with Metal Insets :)

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Solid Watercolor (Almost forgot we have those!!!)

I had some alone time with my twin tots this weekend, and we had some serious fun!!  We must have 20 paintings while I was making dinner Saturday.  Here is what the set up looked like, and how Sarah created.

Artists and Art

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Control Of Error, Pouring

One of my favorite things within Montessori is the built in control of error.  For my little tots, it's most prevalent now in Practical Life.  They adore anything involving water, as all little ones do, so the pull towards water pouring is strong.  The control of error for water pouring is water on the tray (or in the picture here, on the floor, on the sleeves, on the table).  The key here is to teach the lesson carefully. Also, keep in mind that exploration happens and spills are okay and need to be handled with love, care, and kindness.  Teaching the child how to handle their own messes effectively is one of the main aims of practical life.

From my album..............NAME OF ACTIVITY:  WATER POURING

General:       Practical Life
Specific:        Physical Skills- Pouring

*  Tray
*  2 glass pitchers of equal size
*  Colored water (on left, filled ¼ way)
*  Little Towel

Direct:            Coordination, Concentration, Independence, and Order
Indirect:         Mastering pouring from one pitcher to the next.  (one to one pouring)

Preparation: Tray carrying, dry pouring.

AGE:              First year Montessori student.

*  Grasp pitcher on the left with the dominant hand.  
*  Place subdominant hand under the spout.
*  Looking into the center of the pitcher, pour slowly and steadily
*  Wait for the very last drop to go in.
*  Wipe the spout with cloth.
*  Repeat several times, depending on the child/children to decide how many times.
*  Tidy the work.  (Check for spills, and wipe.)

Points of Emphasis:
*  Placement of hand on pitcher, with fingers under the handle and thumb on top.
*  Be sure to wait for the last drop.
*  Pour with the spout.
*  Wipe spout.
*  Pour slowly and steadily.
*  Lift pitcher above empty pitcher for pouring.

*  Spout
*  Idea of Full and Empty
*  Idea of Slow and Steady
*  Color of the water

POINTS OF INTEREST:  Attractive materials, sound of water.

Points of Consciousness:  The arms, wrist, and hand control the pitcher.  The spout makes it easier to pour water.

CONTROL OF ERROR:  The amount of water the teacher prepares the work with is geared toward the success of the child.  Spilled water on the tray can be wiped up with the little towel or sponge. 

VARIATIONS:  Changing the tray, water colors, or pitcher.

EXTENSIONS:  Change pitcher size, or add more water.   Pouring can be done in cooking and snack preparation, garden care, and science experiments.  Pouring can be done between vessels varying in size and shape.  Adding more vessels can make pouring more challenging.

Talk about the ground rules for the colored water, and also how the teacher created it.

Saturday, November 6, 2010

Sandpaper Letters, extensions

No Time For Flash Cards

We are still using our sandpaper letters, but to keep it interesting we are adding some extensions.  As a busy Mom of 3 and teacher of 40, it's easiest for me to post pictures.  The chalkboard is left over from a Handwriting Without Tears Training, she uses a small cut sponge to make the M disappear.  Sandpaper Letter (or Number) rubbing is a common extension on this material.  I simply peeled the paper off of a crayon and let her rub it over the letter.  Later, we brainstormed words with the M sound.  Please feel free to ask any questions, as sharing is what this is all about :)

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Squeezing Work, Pompom!!

Well, that solves the extra pompom issue. Peanut, age 2,  jumped up and down when she finally got all of the pompoms on the left.  She has chosen this every day since I made it.

Paper Bag Puppets

Tonight we made paper bag puppets out of a bunch of craft items that we only have a few left. It is time to clean out the art boxes! This helped, but we are overcome by pompom balls. Any ideas are welcome!

Linked to:

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Milkweed Seed!

We found this outside, flying I'm the air!!  She recognized the type of seed and its travel from her book, The Wonders Of Nature.  It's always wonderful when literature links up with life.
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