A dedicated reading area in your home, classroom or toddler community is a great way to support young readers. It can also provide a moment of respite from the busy home or classroom. It can be a quiet space, a comfortable space. A space where the child can come to catch their breath and gather their thoughts, perhaps regroup, perhaps even lose themselves in the pages of a good book. Here are some inspiring reading areas from various Montessori environments that I'm sure you'll love! Simplicity is key here (isn't it always)! Simple shelf and mattress with a few cushions.... Read more →

You know how some children love to 'post' things. Some children also love to hang things. There is this repetitive fine and gross motor movement that they find satisfying that can help cement their learning and increase concentration. When I first noticed the Language Tree I knew that Otto would enjoy it. He loved our ornament tree at Christmas which uses a very similar hanging motion. I asked Andrea O’Halloran of Montessori Materials to tell me a little more about the Language Tree: "When I taught at Forestville Montessori School, we introduced the concrete example of an object to a... Read more →

Amazing and Independent Australian Stores to Love

We are looking forward to returning to Australia in January. It's almost been two years since we've seen our friends and family there. It will be nice to go back 'home'!! Today I want to share some lovely stores that I've been bookmarking for when we return. All of these stores mean something to me, some have Montessori inspired products and others have products that just suit our style. I hope you enjoy!! Above is Bunny Tickles. This book shelf sells out, so I'm thinking of ordering one now! Count by Nature. We are very familiar with Q Toys but... Read more →

I know a lot of Australians live closer to a Kmart than they do to an Ikea. So when I recently discovered one of their awesome matching games, I really wanted to share it with you. But more than that, I realised that you could do so much to create a Montessori home with one trip to Kmart! Children's Table and Chair Set White - great for a snack table, art area, work table, almost anything! Remember that you can cut down the legs of almost any wooden furniture to make it fit a younger child/toddler. Activity Gym - for... Read more →

Montessori Infant Spaces I'm Loving

I find myself procrastinating rather than working on finishing our Montessori nursery. It's more difficult this time as we know we will be moving once the baby is three to four months old. So I'm not only looking for fresh ideas and inspiration but I'm also trying to find some motivation. Here are a few Montessori infant spaces that I've been enjoying! A lot of people don't fix the mirror to the wall, if the baby isn't moving I guess there is no need. This room has a few simple materials and lots of space for the child to work... Read more →

Yesterday I had the privilege of visiting the Montessori Early Learning Activities (MELA) playgroup based at The Gap in Brisbane (Australia). The group facilitator Amanda is a British trained Montessori educator. I always love to meet Montessori parents and educators and it was such a delight to meet Amanda. She has a real honest and down to earth approach to Montessori which is needed in her work. Amanda runs the MELA playgroup and an eight-week Practical Montessori at Home Beginner Course for Mums and Bubs. She spends a lot of her time communicating with parents and has a lot of... Read more →

I haven't known Megan for a long time however since reading her blog Montessori and Me I really felt a connection to her parenting style. I have found Megan really relatable and down to earth yet inspiring. She writes with real clarity and is passionate about Montessori. Today I am thrilled to share with you Megan and her story. Can you tell us a little about yourself, your family and where you live? I was born and raised in the U.S. While I was studying my degree in Child & Family Development (Human Development) in Georgia, USA. I met my... Read more →

After my recent post about activities using Schleich animals a couple of readers shared pictures of their home environments. They were so good I had to share them here!! Above is a gorgeous set up by Blydie using wooden shelves to sort the animals using geography, by continent. Isn't it fabulous!?! Blydie says: We've also used them for an adjective game eg. "I'm looking for an animal with a pouch." Child finds kangaroo. "Yes the kangaroo has a pouch but I was thinking of a small animal with a pouch." Child finds the koala. "Yes it was the koala I... Read more →

I have briefly mentioned the Toilet Learning Booklet which I have produced with Meg Hicks (from At Home with Montessori and The Child's Space). Meg has been such a wonderful friend and mentor to me. She has a lovely and warm approach to parenting and she is also a really good communicator. Toilet Learning The Montessori Approach is hopefully the first in a series of booklets that we produce together. Meg is also a busy mum, she has a very interesting Montessori story including a couple of fabulous projects in progress. I asked Meg to share her Montessori journey. Collaborating... Read more →

Do you have questions that you would like to ask a Montessori teacher? I always have lots of questions. I often ask them at parent teacher interviews or at parent education nights. Today I've asked Meghan Hicks a question I've had on my mind for a few weeks (by the way Otis doesn't turn three until April). Not only is Meghan Montessori trained she has extensive experience in Montessori schools and importantly she is also a parent of two boys! Here is a question that I've asked Meghan and her response follows. I have a three year old child who... Read more →

A few weeks ago Irene sent me a picture or two of her son Joshua working. In the background I could see his work shelves and of course I asked to see more. I was delighted by this clean, simple but inviting Montessori environment. I hope you enjoy the tour! Words by Irene. My son Joshua is 20 months old at the moment and we live in Melbourne. We have been following Montessori since he was around 6 months old. I became interested in Montessori as my husband is a Montessori child himself and he attended a small local Montessori... Read more →

Would you like another room tour? This is Amelie's room and it's beautiful! The photographs really say it all but here is a short description by Amelie's Mum. Welcome to Amelie’s first bedroom. We were greatly inspired by Sew Liberated, One Claire Day and of course How we Montessori. There is a lot of handmade love in this room, I made her curtains and quilt and her Dad made her window seat and bed surround. Not to mention it was a family effort involving the Granddads to paint the room and install the mirror and shelves. I am amazed given... Read more →

Finally I have updated our what we are reading page. As usual I've only highlighted the best of what we are reading. I want to apologise to the many readers and even sponsors who have emailed me over the last few months. Personally and as a family we have been through a difficult time. My husband returned from a seven month deployment and we are adjusting to a different kind of normal. My screen time has been limited and I have been posting at a reduced rate (I'm sure you have noticed) in order to address the many requests and... Read more →

I would like to introduce you to Kit. She is six months old and lives with her Mum Belle and Dad Tim in Sydney. Quite remarkably Kit and her family live in a small flat with zero storage which explains why her Dad's bike is mounted in her room. Belle was first exposed to Montessori through her Stepmother's involvement at her brother's Montessori school. Although Kit's room can only be described as tiny it's not lacking in any way. I know you'll love and appreciate the details as much as I do! Above you can see Tim's bike securely mounted... Read more →

Photographs by Katie Kolenberg for Little ONE Baby. There is a little bit of Montessori in the latest edition of Little ONE Baby magazine due to hit the shelves later this week in Australia. It was a privilege to have Katie photograph our home and a privilege to be featured in Australia's premier baby magazine. Wow! Isn't it fantastic for a Montessori home to get such exposure and in Australia!! So proud. In this edition you will also find fellow Canberran Claire and her daughter Saskia's very beautiful bedroom. Read more →