"The education of the senses makes men observers." - Maria Montessori. Maria Montessori argued that the education of the senses must be of the greatest pedagogical interest, she suggested doctors and cooks both need refined senses. The Montessori Sound Cylinder are just one of the sensorial materials used in Montessori classrooms (3-6yrs). The Montessori Sound Cylinders are made up of 12 cylinders, six coloured red and six coloured blue. Each red cylinder has a corresponding blue cylinder. There are beads inside each cylinder, the beads inside the corresponding cylinders are the same. The child is to shake the cylinders to... Read more →


I was looking for a Wobbel board for Otto, my four-year-old. Wobbel boards are expensive so I decided to take a look at the cheaper Kmart version in person. While visiting Kmart I noticed many new things in stock including a kitchen helper. Who knew Kmart has kitchen helpers? They also have two new Montessori books in, so it's time for me to write another Kmart Montessori at home post!! There are compromises, the kitchen helper isn't height-adjustable, the balance board has a weight limit of 70kg (Wobbel's capacity is 200kg). But they get the job done and they are... Read more →


1. / 2. / 3. / 4. (UK here)(AU here)(CA here) / 5. / 6. / 7. / 8. / 9. Does your child have their own calendar? At the start of the new year, I wanted to begin using a monthly calendar with my four-year-old. The thing is... he wasn't at all interested. Many calendars are overwhelming for young children. I decided to focus on what he is interested in and what is currently working. We are currently using a Day Calendar and Weather Board. These boards focus on the present day and allow children to make observations like... Read more →


My favourite Montessori rooms are cozy, simple and well organised (a place for everything). Creating Montessori style spaces at home isn't always easy. If you are looking for some ideas and inspiration, here are some rooms that I'm loving. This room is lovely. The colourful rug and blue walls are beautiful. There is simple forward-facing book storage, developmentally appropriate toys and materials, and, artwork displayed at the child's level. I can also see The Dancers Mobile hanging at the top. This room may be staged, it is a promotion for a furniture collaboration. The furniture is well designed, uses natural... Read more →


As you may remember we like to use story baskets (or trays). We don't retell the entire story through puppets or props but I like to add a few things to make the storytelling fun, to hold the child's attention and to further the child's learning. Often my preschooler will use these baskets and trays independently. He will flip through the book and then engage with the materials. Story baskets (or trays) can: Give the child something to hold while reading. Enhance the read-aloud/storytime experience. Stimulate and provide further ideas for exploration, discovery and learning. Expose the child to real... Read more →


I've only recently discovered Alice Zaslavsky's children's food book Alice’s Food A to Z. It was the first cookbook to be given a Notable Book award by the Children’s Book Council of Australia. That says something! Alice is a former School Teacher, MasterChef contestant (2012), culinary correspondent on ABC News Breakfast, author of In Praise of Veg and soon to be food columnist in The Weekend Australian Magazine (replacing David Herbert). "This book is about encouraging kids to dip into the world of food and splash around to see what they can find. It aims to pique their curiosity enough... Read more →


What are the best libraries in Sydney for children? Sydney has amazing libraries, we have so much choice. Today I want to share with you my local library and three other libraries with outstanding children's areas. I live in the Eastern suburbs and all of these libraries are within a 25 minutes drive. Our most visited, local library is the Margaret Martin Library. It is not our closest library but it is the most convenient for us, and convenience is important for a library! The Margaret Martin Library is located on Level 1 of the Royal Randwick Shopping Centre. The... Read more →


I recently noticed that scissor skill workbooks are popular among How we Montessori readers. I love to use scissor practice worksheets but usually, I download them from Etsy or Teachers Pay Teachers. I also like to give my preschooler catalogues from sports stores or gardening stores and allow him to cut out the images as he likes. There are benefits to using scissor skill workbooks like these. The workbooks allow us to have lots of images on hand, we never know if the child will use one page or ten, or more. Workbooks may offer variety and often have images... Read more →


My children love to use clay. Mostly we do open-ended clay play, without any prompts or suggestions on what to make. Occasionally though I like to show the children a technique or make larger sculptures, or give them project ideas. I have lots of different resources for using clay with young children so I decided to make a list of the skills or techniques that we can teach children from around three years with clay, but perhaps from two with play-dough. Clay play techniques to teach children: Squeeze Press Smooth Flatten Mould Cut Knead Crumple Straighten (roll out flat) Crush... Read more →


Do you want to try something different and create with Magnetic Loose Parts? Magnetic Loose Parts play can help develop: self-directed play concentration fine motor skills creativity imagination knowledge around magnetic and non-magnetic properties play regarding symmetry and geometry, skills regarding making shapes and shape play We use A4 Magnetic Sheets (AU) and lots of metal bits and pieces. I suggest looking around your home to see what you have, although I made a special trip to the hardware store to pick up some extra interesting bits and pieces. The Loose Parts items we use include: key rings paper clips... Read more →


Today I'm sharing the top materials ordered by HWM readers through Amazon (US) in the year 2021. This post includes a ton of product links, if that isn't your thing please skip this post. I hope you find this useful and that you get some great ideas for your children for now or for the future! Let's start by looking at toddler toys and materials. The Radio Flyer Classic Walker Wagon is popular year after year (mainly due to this article). My children adored the Melissa & Doug Deluxe Pound and Roll Wooden Tower and the Galt Pop Up Toy... Read more →


The week before Christmas is fabulously quiet in our home. We are mostly Christmas baking and shopping for gifts. An easy at-home activity with children that requires very few ingredients includes making Salt Dough Ornaments. Salt Dough Recipe 2 cups of plain flour 1 cup of salt 1 cup of water. Combine and knead until smooth. Roll out and cut shapes out with cookie cutters. Add a hole for a string with a stick or straw. Bake in the oven at low heat until thoroughly cooked, dry and hard. We used an oven at 130°c for around 2 hours. Once... Read more →


Have you tried sequencing puzzles with your child? Some sequencing puzzles are simple and can be used by toddlers (2yrs+) others are better suited to preschoolers (3-4yrs+). I hadn't given sequencing puzzles much thought until we borrowed one from our local toy library. While the puzzle was easy to put together my child loved the storytelling part, he narrated the story on the puzzle as he put it together. I could see his eyes light up, he really enjoyed putting the story together. Sequencing puzzles are a bit like a storyboard. They help children learn the correct sequence of an... Read more →


Have you seen this amazing building at Whole Earth Montessori School? It was designed by Paul Michael Davis Architects (more images here) inspired by the Trinomial Cube, each of the twenty-seven blocks in the Trinomial Cube is represented by a window. It looks amazing outside and inside. If you liked The Little Montessori Me Picture Book (AU here) by Inez Bunclark, you might also like the new release Taking Care of Myself (AU here). I would recommend both for toddlers to primary school children. Taking Care of Myself takes the reader through the day of the child in a Montessori... Read more →


Do your children like to use real tools, connect things, screw and unscrew things or join things together? If so they might enjoy using a Montessori Screw/Bolt board. I introduced this board (pictured above) to my child at 2yrs (34-35months) and he still loves it today at 4 years old. We have a simple board with a screwdriver, t-nuts and screws which are all the same size. Other boards are available that have graded bolts, that use spanners or hex keys. While the bolt/screw board is not a traditional Montessori practical life material they allow the child to develop the... Read more →