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January 2017
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March 2017

Today I am sharing some really simple geography and cultural work we have been enjoying at home. Above and below Montessori Flag Map Work c/o Montessori Shop. You can also see in the background our Continents Globe which we have used for years. Montessori children first learn the continents then later the countries! Australasia Puzzle Map c/o Montessori Shop with handmade labels. The labels add a language component which is important for the child who is learning to read and write. Identifying individual flags using a Children's Atlas. This is a memory game but we've always used it as a... Read more →

Have you seen or used Magic Nuudles before? I hadn't heard of them until recently. There were a few reasons I really wanted the boys to give them a try. They are bright, colourful and interesting but also they are made from cornstarch and are fully biodegradable! Wow! They are also so different to all of the other arts and craft materials we have tried before. I couldn't wait to see how the boys would use them! Our pack came with 400 Magic Nuudles. They are perfect for children from 3 years and up. The pack comes with an awesome... Read more →

How has your week been? Our week has been hectic mixed in with a little illness. I'm looking forward to the weekend! Caspar is away tonight at a Cosmic Campout! I can't wait to hear all about it tomorrow. Here are a few links and things I've been enjoying this week! I was recently interviewed about Montessori and our approach at Emil Und Mathilda! Otis has been doing a little geography work, above he is pictured working with the Montessori World Map Flag Work c/o Montessori Shop. This week Otis attended his first coding workshop at our local library. He... Read more →

I'm often asked for quick ideas on how to create a Montessori home. I don't believe in Montessori makeovers. I believe changes should be gradual and each change should be followed by a close observation of the child in the new environment. However, I have some small, quick tips that are also really affordable, changes that you can make today that will help to create a more child led environment at home. All of these can be used from toddlerhood, however, are just as important when the child is five or six! 1. Use temporary hooks. Temporary hooks are great... Read more →

My kids love a good scavenger hunt! It can be lots of fun in the backyard or while on a nature walk. Scavenger hunts can help the child to further connect with their surroundings. Here are a few scavenger hunt ideas that I really love! 1. The Woods: Search and Find Adventures. I love this idea for young children. The cards are laminated and the child can colour in each item as they find it! 2. Kids nature scavenger hunt game. I really like the simplicity of this card set, it's nice for younger children. For young children, it's also... Read more →

Today I want to share with you a beautiful collection of prints, puzzles, and games designed and illustrated by a Mum from the Blue Mountains. Eloise from Millions of Monkeys has developed a range of gender neutral, Australian themed, quality children's educational products. There is something really honest and enchanting about this collection. Take a look! Above and below are The Great Barrier Reef Puzzle (100 pieces) recommended for 6ys+. Otis at five years had no problem completing the puzzle but I am sure a six-year-old could do it a lot quicker. It was fun to see him analyse all... Read more →

Put all the premeasured ingredients on a tray and all the child needs to do it mix (and mash) and pour into a pan ready for the oven. Pictured above are the ingredients for a basic banana bread. From two years. Provide an illustrated recipe card plus all ingredients on a tray (with measuring cups and spoons). We laminated the recipe card so Otis could mark off the ingredients as he uses them. From three years. Provide a hand-drawn illustrated recipe card. This is much faster than typing one up, children don't mind silly pictures or messy handwriting! From three... Read more →

Otis (5 yrs) has been unwell and home from school all week. Because he has spent so much time at home I've made note of the materials he has been using. Keep in mind we don't use many of the Montessori school materials at home - because he uses them so much at school. So these are more at home, play, open-ended materials. Here are his favourites from this week! 1. Laminated Butterflies (similar US). These are perfect for under the microscope, on the light table or hanging on the wall! 2. Transparent Pattern Blocks (similar US). We use these... Read more →

This is The Secret of Childhood Montessori School 3-6 classroom in Switzerland. This classroom opened in January 2017 and offers a curriculum in English and French. For further information visit their contact page. It looks so warm and inviting. Congratulations to the staff for getting this gorgeous classroom ready and best wishes for the new year! Above you can see language shelves with metal insets in the centre. Below is a comfortable reading area. I love the greenery and well-considered art placed at the child's level. This is Yahalom Montessorii in Jerusalem, Israel. This is the only Jewish Montessori School... Read more →

We all want our children to be little bookworms. We read to them from birth, we create a literacy-rich home environment. Yet some parents feel a sense of disappointment when their children are not early readers. What have we done wrong, why can't my child read yet? Perhaps the school is at fault? I stressed a lot when Caspar (my eldest son) was learning to read and it really impacted my approach to Otis learning to read. Caspar was not an early reader and I felt a sense of disappointment. I called him a reluctant reader, when he could read... Read more →

My boys love playing with Magnetic Tiles. They are an open-ended construction toy that really gets the children thinking. Today I want to look at the educational benefits of Magnetic Tiles. Are they the ultimate educational toy? Magnetic Tiles come in various colours in the shape of squares and triangles. They have magnets and attract on all side. Our Magnetic Tiles are translucent and work beautifully on the light table. They are also simple to store in a basket or tray on the children's shelves. They are really well sized for the child's hands (recommended for 3yrs+) and offer hands-on... Read more →

How has your week been? Our week was busy! The boys are back at all of their extra-curricular activities and have recommenced their weekly speech therapy sessions after the long summer break. Here are a few articles I've been enjoying this week. Have you seen this awesome Owl Treehouse Library at Omni Montessori School? I linked to this one FB last week. I love the connection one of the teachers made with the Montessori philosophy of reading and being in nature. It's beautiful. Susan from Michael Olaf has written a good comparison piece about Montessori and Waldorf School including curriculum... Read more →

Otis is five and loves playdough now more than ever. I've written occasionally about how we use playdough, always with different items and in different colours, textures and scents. Adding essential oils to playdough is a must. Here are four ways we are currently enjoying playdough. 1. Alphabet Stamps. This is an excellent early literacy activity, remembering it's best to start with lower case letters. 2. Other Stamps. I didn't realise how much fun this would be. We have a lot of stamps at home so there is always lots for the boys to choose from. Above are some hand... Read more →

Do you have an Alphabet Puzzle or Moveable Alphabet at home? If so, this is a really fun activity that reinforces knowledge on the shapes and form of letters. I wouldn't do this in a way to teach children their letters or to test them but to reinforce their knowledge. I would include letters they are confident with alongside letters they may be struggling with. This is a simple activity of putting the letters from an Alphabet Puzzle or Moveable Alphabet into a Mystery Bag and allowing the child with their hands and their sense of touch only to identify... Read more →

I like to share books with my children that are inspiring and are about real people. I love real stories. They are more relatable and hopefully they get the children thinking about what they can do in their lives, about what they would like to achieve. Here are three books that we are currently reading about real people and their inspiring stories. Me...Jane (worldwide). While I love this book I really wanted more. It's beautiful and a great introduction to Jane Goodall's work and life as a child. There is very little in the main story about her journey to... Read more →