Previous month:
September 2016
Next month:
November 2016

Have you wondered what happens in the Montessori Cycle Three (9-12yrs) classroom? This term Caspar started in the Cycle Three class and I've asked him a few questions about his experience. His new classroom has around 46 students, two teachers, and one class assistant. You recently transitioned from the Cycle Two (6-9yrs) class to the Cycle Three (9-12yrs) class. Can you tell us a little about the transition process, how did that work? The first part of the transition is an observation. We observe the students in the class and answer a few questions on a clipboard. A couple of... Read more →

Image source: Three Minute Montessori. Both of my children still use their Stokke Tripp Trapp Chairs, this is a good guide on seat adjustment (including height and depth). We are living proof that these chairs last years! This is a gorgeous article from Jasmine at Three Minute Montessori - Prepared Environment for Renters and Small Spaces. She shares her new environment in London! I love the use of space, lots of little hooks and details. I love this tour of another Montessori home in London. This is a tour from Frida By Mighty at The Montessori Notebook. So much colour!... Read more →

Image source: Kidz Occupational Therapy I mentioned that I was trying to improve Caspar's work space. He has a table and chair which are adjustable and I want to make the most of it, set it up in the best way possible. I knew that his feet should sit flat on the floor and I looked up some other ergonomic suggestions. I really wanted to share this as it's a topic I've discussed with many of you here before. It can be difficult to find quality child size furniture, furniture the exact right size for your child. Often we don't... Read more →

I wanted to make a list of the kitchen tools we have used over the years. The ages listed below are approximate. When you introduce these materials to your child depends not only on your child and their previous work in the kitchen but also on you and how much you want to do. We also know that some children love making snack, love baking while others aren't so interested. Follow the child! Please feel free to add anything I have missed. I have provided links to products we have used and where the link might be helpful, some materials... Read more →

Today I felt privileged to watch my five-year-old practice his cursive handwriting. During our parent-child session at school, Otis (above) showed us his lovely looping style as he repetitively wrote out some phonograms. I loved his focus. I love that he goes to a school that still believes in cursive. I really wanted to write about how important it is and I've decided to republish this slightly edited article written by Montessori parent and teacher Meghan Hicks. I first published this article last year but it is still very relevant today. He is Meghan's article. In Montessori classrooms the world... Read more →

I have been participating in the Montessori Notebook Setting Up Your Home Montessori-Style e-course and I've been working hard to improve our home areas for Caspar (8yrs). We still use and love our calendars including our Linear and Child-Friendly calendar but I wanted something simple for Caspar to put on his desk. I thought something wooden would be nice and remembered seeing a Waldorf style calendar with a candle. My search revealed a whole world of wonderful Waldorf calendars. I think we will go with the wooden perpetual calendar with the blocks (this DIY version looks good!) however while I'm... Read more →

Do you have a left-handed child? Caspar and I are both left-handed. Caspar's teacher recommended using left-handed pencils. Have you seen them? I was against them at first but due to his teacher's recommendation I knew we had to give them a try. The first pencil she recommended was the Yoropen (Australia here) but Caspar didn't like it at all. We also tried the Stabilo Easyergo left handed pencil (Australia here). The Stabilo is ok, not sure I would recommend it on the price, I didn't find it particularly comfortable but I wonder if it would have been better for... Read more →

"Remember that a supportive environment is sometimes distinguished more by what objects are left out, than by which are included." - Susan Stephenson, The Joyful Child: Montessori, Global Wisdom for Birth to Three. I really like this quote as when we are preparing our home environments it's easy to think we need more, more materials, more things. When really we only need a few well thought, well-considered materials. It's about being developmentally appropriate and leaving out everything else. It's also easy to take on societal norms without considering the true worth or benefit of a toy or materials. There are... Read more →

Today I have a guest post for you. Cristina from Mothers Abroad has been so generous to give us a tour of her home and the amazing Montessori environment she has created for her 19-month old daughter. These spaces are so beautiful and also very practical. The areas are well designed and you can see the thought and care that has gone into them. I hope you find some inspiration here and some tips or ideas for your home too! Cristina and her family currently reside in Germany. Here is Cristina's post. Imagine you are about 1.70m tall and you... Read more →

My children love activities that involve natural materials. Where there is something for them to hold, feel, touch. Where there is something that is interesting, with fascinating little details. Today I am featuring some Montessori Shell Activities that I know you will love. Above and below is a shell sorting activity that I presented to Otis this week. The child sorts the shells (into the large jars) into Univalve or Bivalve. The Shell Poster (left in top picture) is from Montessori Materials and the Univalve/Bivalve sheet is from Montessori for Everyone. Cleaning a large shell - Brosser un gros coquillage... Read more →

Last month I wrote about my experience attending a parenting seminar. I feel like we could all do with a few extra parenting tools or skills. There are times when my children's behaviour has caught me by surprise and it's a good idea, where possible, to be prepared. I have just completed the first four modules of the Triple P Parenting Online course. The first four modules include What is Positive Parenting, Encouraging Behaviour You Like, Teaching New Skills, and Managing Misbehaviour. I'd love to hear if you have completed this course. I've been parenting for a few years now... Read more →

You might have guessed following yesterday's post, that we have been doing lots of geometric shape work around here! We have been using the Geo Strips (number 3.) and I'm often asked about them. So I've compiled a quick list of some other geometric shape construction sticks and pieces that might be useful for a Montessori home or classroom! 1. Learning Advantage Connecting GeoStix (Australia here). 2. Learning Resources Geometric Shapes Building Set (similar Australia here). 3. Geo Strips (Australia here) (you can see Otis using the Geo Strips in this post). 4. Wikki Stix Basic Shapes Creative Fun Kit.... Read more →

Otis has been home from school for the past three days, so we've pulled out a couple of new activities! Above is a standard geoboard with the extra twist of using grid paper. The child draws shapes on the paper then makes the shapes on the geoboard. When using the geoboard Otis usually makes random shapes and sometimes creates a picture or little scene. Above he is using a transparent geoboard on the light table. I made Otis this natural geoboard - inspired by this post at Fairy Dust Teaching. I love how it is a little rustic and makes... Read more →

Last week I mentioned we had been using plaster gauze. I was so surprised by how much fun it was. Caspar made a mask and Otis made a cast of his hand. They would be awesome as Halloween decorations or costumes! Since I've encouraged the boys to play around and experiment with the gauze. It's not a really clean activity but it's not out of control messy either. I've seen other children make amazing volcanos and the options are really endless. The plaster gauze can be used in any shape or direction and it sets really hard. It's also microwavable... Read more →

Today I would like to introduce you to Jasmine from Three Minute Montessori (blog here). I hope you enjoy getting to know Jasmine, she is a breath of fresh air!! 1. Can you tell us a little about yourself, your family and about where you live in Singapore? I probably should make it sound like I've got it together, but truth is my children have turned my life upside down. I had two kids within the span of sixteen months, so I went from FTWM to PTWM and finally to SAHM. Dylan is 3.5yo and Emmy is 2yo now. Between... Read more →