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June 2015
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August 2015

Sometimes it feels like we have books in every corner of our house. It's not true though. We sometimes have books on the boys' shelves and in use in their various work spaces, there are always books in this above little book unit and next to the boys' bed. Here we have Animalium, World Atlas (this almost never leaves the shelves), a Space Encyclopedia (so popular after following the recent... Read more →

There has been a huge shift in the amount and variety of art we have been creating since setting up our art nook. The biggest change is the location where the children are doing art. I'm thinking an art area needs to be super accessible (and it wasn't before). There are many times Otis doesn't want to help in the kitchen but can work in this area and still talk... Read more →

Some gorgeous, mostly Montessori finds that I am loving on Etsy. Nature Themed Play Dough Set by Montessori Restore. Lots of materials for play dough - or cooking. Lots of ideas here! Modern Child Table Set by Jesse Lee Designs. This is gorgeous - so, so lovely. Cotton Montessori Placemats by Natura Baby (who also make cube chairs). Handmade Sewing Kit by Cobble Works. Adorable! This would be a gorgeous... Read more →

We have used lots of different Montessori sewing trays. Each tray or basket has focused on one activity or one skill such as needle threading or sewing buttons. This is our first real 'sewing tray', one which the child can use the materials and sew as they wish. Use running stitch on the linen in the embroidery hoop, sew buttons onto the felt, sew buttons onto the linen, sew felt... Read more →

Everything about writing letters to friends is good and heart warming. While Otis loves his letter writing tray he also loves using our old typewriter. Otis can use letter recognition and copy my writing (we are only talking about a couple of words) or Caspar will sit and help him. This is fantastic for his literacy skills. We end up with lots of little letters and notes to friends. It's... Read more →

I love to get my children's brains going, I love to see them think in different ways. I like to get those neurons firing! Online I have seen many visual perception exercises but when I tried to track them down they were all overseas (not in English) and expensive workbooks to get here. So once I tracked down some resources that are accessible I thought I definitely need to share... Read more →

Art shelves are always so lovely to look at. Always so colourful and full of texture. We still have most of our art supplies downstairs (you can see a bit of the shelving here) however we have created a little art nook upstairs which is smaller in size and really only contains what the boys are using. I can see (supervise) this area from the kitchen so it gets used... Read more →

I don't often write about Caspar. He is seven years old and loves Minecraft and Soccer. His needs are pretty simple. However as he is in the sensitive period for culture (I haven't read about this but have noticed - I don't really know if there is such a thing!) I thought I would highlight a lovely product that we have been sent by The Adventurous Mailbox which taps into... Read more →

I don't think about childhood development as much as I did when Otis was a toddler. However every now and then I think 'wow' I haven't seen you do that before - 'that's new'. We know through Montessori that children do not grow or development at a consistent rate throughout life but rather through phases, through stages of development. Montessori described the stages of development as a rhythm of six... Read more →

I know we have discussed that in a Montessori classroom art is not confined to art shelves. In Montessori classrooms art can be found on the science, cultural, botany, geography and nearly every shelf available. However most Montessori classrooms do have art shelves and I am interested to see what is on them! Here are ten fantastic Montessori school art shelves. These pictures do not do them justice, if you... Read more →

I've been wanting to try this idea for a while. An area where the children can hang their special feathers, leaves, photos, artwork, letters and postcards. A place where they decide what they want to hang (not the adult) and where they can hang it themselves. I think there is something to be said about not displaying children's art - not taking the focus away from the process and putting... Read more →

In each Montessori school we have attended there have been areas that I feel have been lacking. In Canberra I felt the children could do more cooking, baking and food preparation. Here in Brisbane I feel they could do more art. Our Canberra school had a specialist art teacher and regular art evenings. I know (and understand) the theory behind not having specialist teachers in Montessori classrooms however having a... Read more →

We only made a few changes to our shelves this week. We included new crayons with paper, they are shaped like rock crayons and are handmade so I'm interested to see how much they are used/compare to the commercial crayons we have. I wonder if their shape will change the shading or approach to drawings. We refreshed our letter writing tray with new paper, coloured envelopes and stickers. Our Noctural/Diurnal... Read more →

There are lots of ways to display materials in a Montessori environment. In the home we have more freedom however the concept is similar to that of a formal Montessori environment (school or community), materials should be accessible to the child and easy to pack up and put away. Beauty and aesthetics are important. Some trays need to be food safe. Some activities the child will do in the tray... Read more →

Are your children interested in what happens at night? We are often out when it is dark. Last night we were at a park and were able to lie down on the grass and look at the stars and listen. We've gone for night walks with a torch just to see what we might find. I have never seen a Nocturnal/Diurnal Activity out at a Montessori school so I figure... Read more →