It's NOT the Stork! / Amazing you! / Only for me At around four years old, my children start asking questions about babies and where they come from and have questions about body parts. Four years of age is also the time we discuss nudity and privacy with our children. It's when we teach them about keeping their clothes on and keeping their private parts for them. One of the easiest things we can do for our children from birth is to call our body parts by the correct name. Yes, let's normalise penis, testicles, scrotum, uterus, vagina and labia.... Read more →


Sometimes it feels like the preschool world is obsessed with talking pigs (peppa & george), a deep sea exploring polar bear, cat and penguin (octonauts) or a family of Australian dogs (bluey). While there is a place for make believe, I want you to consider, just for a minute, the world of reference, the world of encyclopedias, the world of non-fiction - for preschoolers! To create children who are critical thinkers with a strong foundation in reality, I want to encourage you to start a little children's reference library. I want my children to know how to research and how... Read more →


Has your child ever asked what the difference is between a turtle and a tortoise or between a crocodile and an alligator? Children are curious and often notice similarities and differences in the things around them. Sometimes looking at similarities and differences means looking closer, paying attention to the smaller, finer details. When asked about turtles and tortoises, the only difference I could think of is that turtles like water and tortoises don't. I also didn't want to give my child the answer; I wanted us to find out the answer together. Pursuing the idea of similarities and differences, I've... Read more →


Do you have an interest in early childhood literacy or just love good children's books? As an aspiring children's librarian, I'm always looking for new and relevant children's books. As a parent, I'm looking for ways to engage my children with books and ways to extend the learning from those books through art. I've seen book subscriptions before, especially for babies and toddlers, but none have been like the BookieBundle Subscription (AU). This is our first subscription box and.. wow, I loved it. There is so much more to the subscription box than you initially see. It's not just for... Read more →


Have you thought about putting up a Street Library or a Little Free Library? We've had our Street Library in since October 2020. Being a Street Librarian has been rewarding and I encourage you to consider it. Studies have shown the more books in a child’s home, the better their educational outcome. I hope the same can be applied to books in the neighbourhood, perhaps Street Libraries can influence neighbourhood educational outcomes? There are social reasons to install a Street Library too. Neighbours and passersby will often stop and chat while visiting the Library, some will sit and read at... Read more →


Children's books have become more inclusive in terms of gender, ethnicity, hair colour and skin colour. But I feel people in many children's books still look 'perfect' with smooth complexions and they overall look homogeneous, monomorphic and uniform. I first borrowed Bodies are Cool (worldwide here) from the Waverley Library. They have a wonderful range of children's picture books. I loved Bodies are Cool so much that I ordered a copy for us to keep. Bodies are Cool has a simple storyline, that all bodies are cool. It features groups of people in different settings. The people illustrated have various... Read more →


Image: Joy Kids (AU) I have written many articles about how we store children's books. In a Montessori home, we want our children's books to be easily accessible but also ordered and presented in a way that is attractive to the child. For a young child, we may put books in a basket or in a forward-facing bookshelf. You can read my recommendations on forward-facing bookshelves at How We Store and Display Children's Books - at 2-3yrs. By the time the child is 4 to 5 years old, maybe earlier, they are wanting access to many, many more books and... Read more →


Today I'm sharing six art activities that we've tried recently. We have art shelves which are open to my preschooler, but these are specific activities presented on a tray for us to work on together. The first two are based on books, there are a few activities included that also involve some science!! Water Colour Painting with Drop - Have you read Drop: An Adventure through the Water Cycle by Emily Kate Moon? It's a fantastic picture book about the water cycle. The publisher recommends for 4-8yrs, but I'd recommend from 3 years+. I love that this activity combines reading,... Read more →


When I wrote the article The Best Libraries in Sydney for Children, I knew there were a couple of libraries missing that I was yet to visit. The Woollahra Library in Double Bay was one of them. This is a large library with an amazing children's section and it has to be the greenest library in Sydney. πŸͺ΄πŸ“šβ€οΈ Above are stairs that double as seating with green leaves cascading down. This green wall includes the return chutes!! πŸ’š Many libraries lack natural light. This library has lots of natural light but must also use grow lights or similar to support... Read more →


There are a lot of books that can help prepare your child for significant events like going to the doctor or dentist. However, there are very few books that are non-commercial (without licensed characters) and that have real, photographic, relatable images, that would be preferred by many Montessori parents. I recently discovered this Toddler Prep series, that uses real images and a variety of children. Toddler Prep books can help children of all ages prepare for unfamiliar environments, sounds, equipment and people, strange noises, waiting, lining up and being touched by medical professionals. The Toddler Prep books walk the reader... Read more →


We've been doing a ton of art lately, more than cooking or other practical life activities. I love to pair a book and an art activity, this week we tried two art activities with Leo Lionni books! ❀️ Pairing the two helps to create a connection between the child and the book and it makes us look deeper into the story. Here are six art trays that we've enjoyed. Remember to follow your child including their interests, developmental needs and skill level. These activities don't need to be presented on a tray. We can put them on our art table... Read more →


Research has shown that Australian children want to learn First Nations words more than other, foreign languages. We have a few books with some Indigenous words but I knew I could do better to expose my children to our First Nations languages. Why should we introduce our children to First Nations Words and Languages? To acknowledge and raise awareness of First Nations Languages. To help strengthen and preserve the languages and to increase demand for language-specific resources. To help build connections between Indigenous and Non-Indigenous communities. To increase knowledge of and respect for First Nations People. To provide the cognitive... Read more →


Did you know that Ashley from Hapa Family has released a new book? The Montessori Home: Create a Space for Your Child to Thrive (AU here)(UK here)(World Wide) was released last month. I couldn't wait to get my hands on it and I wasn't disappointed! There are a lot of Montessori books around but Ashely has written a book about what I feel was missing. That is the parent's point of view of Montessori in the home. Although Ashley is a certified Montessori guide (0-3) this is written from a parent's perspective, and it's a welcome change. The communication really... Read more →


The beauty of Lovevery Play Kits is that they contain stage-based play essentials. The idea is that through research we can present our child with the right toys at the right time. But... the Lovevery Play Kits don't only contain play essentials, they also contain practical life tools that are so useful and enriching that we use them every day! So just in case you were thinking Lovevery is all about toys, I want to prove you wrong and share some of the materials that aren't toys, that we use super frequently with my preschooler at 4yrs. Some of these... Read more →


We are mid-way through a 7-day isolation period and my preschooler has been desperate for some new activities. It's also been rainy so my mind goes straight to art. I've raided our art cupboard and put together a few new art activities! These activities allow the child to focus on one activity or one skill at a time. The art trays can be used: to introduce a new skill. to introduce new materials. on the kitchen table for the children to work on after breakfast. after preschool/daycare/school alongside a healthy snack to relax and decompress. in the afternoon while the... Read more →