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June 2012
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August 2012

A week of Otis in the kitchen at fifteen months. Otis transferring food. I have my board next to him where I am preparing the food (peeling, cutting etc). When I'm finished with each piece I put it on his board and he transfers it into the steamer/bowl/plate. This is the activity he does the most in the kitchen, he's helping and often samples the food. Tearing oregano and then transferring into a pan (for a yummy pasta sauce). Investigating new foods. Otis has seen beetroot on his plate ready to eat but this is the first time he's seen... Read more →

This isn't exactly a kitchen activity although it does involve food and I really wanted to share this with you. Meg from At Home with Montessori has recently updated her site and as I was checking it out I came across some interesting information about matching work. Meg suggests that a child from around 12 months can be introduced to matching work using identical physical objects, known as Stage 1 Matching Work. I wanted to try it straight away. I put three pieces of fruit on the mat and gave Otis a bowl with the three matching pieces. The first... Read more →

"Let's pretend we're chefs and make pasta everyday." - Caspar We love making pasta. It's one of our messier cooking activities. It's also really simple. 250g flour, we prefer to use strong pasta flour, it makes a difference! 3 egg yolks 2 eggs 1 tablespoon olive oil We don't add salt although most people would add a pinch. We put the flour on the counter and add the mixed eggs and olive oil to the centre and work it in to make a dough. We knead the dough for a few minutes. The dough is much firmer than play-dough or... Read more →

What does food mean to you? Since having children food has taken on a whole new meaning. Food means more to me now than ever. Warmth, security, love, nutrition. My children spend a lot of time in the kitchen. Mainly because it's where I am. I involve them as much as I can. I also try creative ideas so they can take the lead and the main responsibility for the food they make. I try to come up with ideas so they can work together. We use food to tell people how much we love them and how much we... Read more →

I feel like the luckiest person. I open my inbox and find the most gorgeous pictures. This is Annika (2 1/2 years) getting ready in the morning at her washing station. This space exemplifies what I love about Montessori. Function and beauty. This space is functional and practical. The mirror is at the perfect height, Annika can easily see herself. The bowl and jug are at the right height. Annika can reach her lotion and soap. The space is beautiful with a lovely adorned mirror and a vase of flowers. Every detail has been thought through. This space wasn't designed... Read more →

My cursive is terrible. I usually write in print and sometimes feel like this doesn't really help Caspar learn his cursive. His sandpaper letters are cursive and he has a small letter chart on his pin board to help him (and me) remember how to form the letters. I love these handwriting work sheets that you can customise. Caspar is really eager to learn his name. Most of all he likes to practice his best friend's name. I've printed out a few family names for him to practice too. This activity really works for Caspar because it has a purpose.... Read more →

What do you do when you cannot access the right materials, the right child sized furniture? You make your own or in this case you find a good carpenter to help you out. This is Thea's little table and chair. Perfect! How welcoming for the child. To be able to sit and work or eat comfortably, independently. To feel so included, part of the family, to feel important! One day Thea will know the lengths her family went to, to have this furniture made especially for her. That's extra special. Thank you to Maria (all the way in Colombia) for... Read more →

I've only seen them in books before. When I found these yesterday I had to get some for the boys. We know they are from Morocco but we had no idea what to expect inside. "Treasure!" Caspar exclaimed. Caspar opened his with ease. Otis needed some help. Caspar was quite trusting here. The correct method is with a tap of sharp instrument like a pick. We might need a pick as we couldn't get this one open. Beautiful. What a fantastic hands on learning experience. Read more →

Julia's comment on yesterday's post started me thinking about a tracking toy round-up. Tracking toys allow the child to focus on a moving object. This prepares the eye for reading. The simpler the toy the better, too many patterns provide a distraction. These are great for children of various ages. 1 and 3 have larger balls which are good for a younger child. 1. TAG Amazing Tracker available at Michael Olaf and Amazon. This great for toddlers as they need to stand to reach the top. I have seen this in many Montessori toddler communities and homes. Please let me... Read more →

I had a longer post planned but I decided to update my site tonight. Here it is now as Thank you to a friend for the much needed encouragement. All the links to the typepad site will still work but if you create any new links it would be appreciated if you could use If you encounter any problems with links or subscriptions please let me know. This is a photograph from a couple of days ago. A little car tracker I found in our cupboard. The benefit of being the second child is having all the old... Read more →

This is my last collaborative post on mobiles (for the time being!). Thank you to all the lovely mums who have contributed photographs and stories. This post contains a lot of home made mobiles. Mums who have no Montessori training and some that do, making mobiles for their newborns to enjoy. I really like the variety here, not just the mobiles but how people use them and of course the environments that surround them. This is Van Oak at only ten days old. Amy made this mobile using some black paint, a polystyrene ball with a screw at the top.... Read more →