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 →


a. / b. / c. (AU) / d. / e. / f. (AU here) A year or so ago I received a text from a friend, asking for a recommendation for a children's weekly calendar. I gave some general DIY suggestions as at that time all of our days kind of looked the same, we had no need for a weekly calendar. But now Otto (4yrs) asks repeatedly what day is swimming, what day is playgroup, what day is judo. It starts to drive me crazy and I found we absolutely had a need for a weekly calendar or a... Read more →


There are two trains of thought when it comes to children's knives. There are those that are happy for their children to use 'child safe' knives. These are knives like the Rikon Kuhn KinderKitchen and KiddiKutter (AU), that can be used from a young age as they are blunt, they are not sharp enough to cut a child's hand. There are others that prefer their child to use a 'real' (sharp, but with a round tip) knife as soon as practicable. In all of the Montessori toddler classes I've attended, the children use real knives under close supervision. The benefit... Read more →


Wednesday 2nd February 2022 is World Read Aloud Day!! The purpose of World Read Aloud Day is to celebrate the power of reading aloud. I love reading aloud to my children but often I worry if I should be doing it more, if they are really listening, if I'm choosing the right books and perhaps if I could be doing a better job at it. I've been reading a ton about reading aloud and here are some of the best tips and quotes I've found that have put my mind at ease. "Reading out loud is probably the least expensive... Read more →


1. / 2. / 3. / 4. (UK here)(AU here)(CA here) / 5. / 6. / 7. / 8. / 9. Does your child have their own calendar? At the start of the new year, I wanted to begin using a monthly calendar with my four-year-old. The thing is... he wasn't at all interested. Many calendars are overwhelming for young children. I decided to focus on what he is interested in and what is currently working. We are currently using a Day Calendar and Weather Board. These boards focus on the present day and allow children to make observations like... Read more →


I've only recently discovered Alice Zaslavsky's children's food book Alice’s Food A to Z. It was the first cookbook to be given a Notable Book award by the Children’s Book Council of Australia. That says something! Alice is a former School Teacher, MasterChef contestant (2012), culinary correspondent on ABC News Breakfast, author of In Praise of Veg and soon to be food columnist in The Weekend Australian Magazine (replacing David Herbert). "This book is about encouraging kids to dip into the world of food and splash around to see what they can find. It aims to pique their curiosity enough... Read more →


This term we decided not to return to our Forest School class. Instead, we are trying a little of our own Beach School. One or two (or three) mornings a week we make our way to the beach to explore, have fun and learn a little. The beach provides an ideal learning environment for children who can learn in-situ, hands-on and be able to run and jump and generally make as much noise as they like. It makes sense to choose one or two regular spots to visit each week so the children can observe the changes in the environment... Read more →


We've used modelling beeswax many times before but we've always used Stockmar Modeling Beeswax. Stockmar Modeling Beeswax can be expensive and I wanted to try a natural alternative. I decided to try some homemade Modeling Beeswax. Working with Modeling Beeswax is a good activity to develop muscles in the fingers and hands. It can be calming and the children can work on their sculpting skills. Modeling Beeswax is firm and can be warmed by the child's hands which may help to develop perseverance and patience. When cooled it retains its shape so the sculptures can be used on a nature... Read more →


My preschooler recently transitioned from mostly using the Kuhn Rikon Kinderkitchen Knife to mostly using the 'big kids knife', the Opinel Le Petit Chef Knife (AU here). The Opinel knife is much sharper than the Kuhn Rikon knife so we needed to go over our safety rules. Our knife safety rules include: Sharp knives are stored out of reach of young children. We keep our Opinel knife with our adult knives, our child has to ask to use it. Children only use knives under 100% adult supervision. There is no walking off or turning away. We encourage children to hold... Read more →


This term my preschooler started taking an online music class which is guided by the Suzuki approach. It's completely different to the music classes I've taken with my children before. The classes have dramatically improved my child's musical vocabulary. Towards the end of the class, the teachers read or sing a couple of books to the children. The classes have inspired me to start a small collection of music-related books to read at home. Initially, I selected books about the Orchestra! First Book About the Orchestra by Sally Taplin. This is relatively short at ten pages but it has nine... Read more →


The first blog post I ever wrote was about a book called How to Raise an Amazing Child: The Montessori Way. It's a fantastic entry-level Montessori book. The author Tim Seldin recently released another book with Lorna McGrath Montessori for Every Family: A Practical Parenting Guide to Living, Loving and Learning. As the title suggests, it's all about the Montessori Family ❀️!! "The Montessori way of thinking encompasses many things, but fundamentally it is a way of creating a culture that helps people of all ages to work together in peaceful, mutually supportive ways. Its approach is counter-intuitive to the... Read more →


Do your children enjoy playing with Magnetic Tiles? We've had a small set of Magnetic Tiles for years however Otto (pictured) received another set for his fourth birthday. πŸŽ‚ He can do so much more building with this extra set, it's really opened up new ideas and new creations! Magnetic tiles can help to develop: concentration and focus critical thinking problem-solving skills creativity visual discrimination skills geometry skills patterning skills coordination independent play. Most of all we like to use magnetic tiles for open-ended play. But I believe in getting the most out of our materials, rotating toys and presenting... Read more →


I was recently asked on the How we Montessori Facebook page for recommendations on resources for teaching young children about emotions. This is one area where they may not be one Montessori approach however I am more than happy to share the resources that we use. Teaching children to identify and name emotions is the first step in teaching children about their own emotions and the emotions of others. It's also a good way to teach children there are a range of emotions and all emotions are ok. Once children can name their emotions they can better express themselves, feel... Read more →


Do you bake often with your children? With my first child, I really had no idea how to bake with a child and I had to try really hard to make it happen. Now with my third child Otto (3yrs), we bake in some way almost every day. Sometimes he bakes alongside me on his kitchen helper at the kitchen counter. A couple of times a week I will also invite him to bake at his baking table. A baking table can be any low, child-size table. For a young child, we could use their weaning table. It just means... Read more →


Are you looking for some Montessori-style at-home activities for your child at 12 to 18 months? Here are some of our favourite activities for this age. These activities are listed in chronological order, starting at 12 months. If your child is 18 months please see my previous article Montessori Activities to Try 18-24 Months. Remember that children develop at different rates and we have access to different materials. Please use these ideas as a guide only. Above, independently reading small books. Pincer Grasp Block. Yes, children can use the pincer grasp this young! Ball push box. Play with a wallet... Read more →