Image supplied by How we Montessori/Kylie D'Alton You may have noticed that we do a lot of art in our home. Even on sick or rainy days the oil pastels are used and paint is in abundant supply. I love it and Otto responds really well to it. However art is not my strength, often I feel like I don't know what I am doing and I question how it... Read more →

One of our most used toys is the stacking and pegging board. Both Otis and Otto have loved them from around 14 months, once they could comfortably sit unaided and use two hands together in a coordinated way. Some pegging toys are harder to use as the pegs click together, others slot into each other easily. I have found them to be toys that last, they remain popular for over... Read more →

There are two new release Montessori books that you need to know about. The Montessori Book of Coordination and Life Skills (for ages 2+) and The Montessori Book of Words and Numbers (for ages 3+) by Maja Pitamic. These are both activity books, each book contains 70-80 activities. The activities are all very Montessori, which is fantastic for Montessori families who just want to be able to pick up a... Read more →

Today I thought it would be fun to share some of Otto's art experiences. We started the morning with painting outside. I put the cover on our water table and it's perfect for Otto to paint on. We have some acrylic A3 sheets, paint, toddler paint brushes, pinecones, wool, paint pots and spoons (for spooning out the paint). Otto also picked up and used some sticks and feathers. Spooning out... Read more →

Have you tried any baster or pipette activities with your toddler? Many toddlers enjoy water play so this is a lovely way to allow them to experiment with water while developing coordination, strength and a few fine and gross motor skills. These types of activities provide an opportunity for the refinement of movement, repetition and concentration. Pictured above and below, Otto finds the baster easiest to use. He enjoying squirting... Read more →

Chatting to teachers and friends it became clear that everyone has their own type of scissors they prefer for toddlers. I looked around online and found the same thing. Even with Montessori toddler teachers, there wasn't a consensus on the best type of scissors for the first cutting tray. So today I'm sharing a few articles from others showing their first cutting trays and sharing the scissors we've used. Some... Read more →

Do you have art materials freely accessible to your toddler/s? I have found it's helpful, it means the art materials get used more and there is no need for the child to continually ask for permission. We have an art easel, large chalkboard and often paints outside, but what about inside? We definitely want less messy art inside. Here is how we make it work. Art materials are stored on... Read more →

Do you have any magnetic letters at home? Magnetic letters on our fridge really helped my children to casually practice the spelling of their name and other short words. Using magnetic letters at home is a great way for the child to practice their literacy skills without duplicating or replicating work done at school. I like having them available simply for the child to play or tinker with when they... Read more →

You know we love beautiful art supplies. We also love art supplies that support our children's development. Both of my children have at times struggled with their pencil grip. Did you know that Crayon Rocks help children develop the correct tripod grip? Unlike other tools, Crayon Rocks are not complicated, all you need to do is give the child the crayon and the crayon does the rest! We recently received... Read more →

I want to do everything I can to encourage Otis to write. However, I know it will come - when he is ready. So I'm not being pushy, but occasionally providing gentle prompts. Encouraging him when I can to write recipes (his favourite), shoppings lists, cards, and letters. I remember a tip I read in Montessori Read and Write that I also used with Caspar (much earlier in his learning)... Read more →

Today I want to introduce you to Emma from Montessori Enterprises ( Montessori Enterprises stock a wide range of Montessori language materials. You can order individual items including objects, picture cards, word strips, phrase strips and sentence strips or complete sets. Including the Pink, Blue and Green Series. This makes it super easy for teachers, homeschoolers or even parents at home to find what they are looking for. Let's find... Read more →

Do your children like making their own books? Otis makes so many of them. Often tiny books with lots of little drawings or notes in them! So I wanted to experiment a little and show him some new ways of making books. Here are a few ideas we've tried recently, some of these he has made completely independently and others with some help. Hole punch and tie with ribbon, twine... Read more →

One of the ways we can support our child's learning is to incorporate literacy games into play. This is particularly useful if your child goes to school and you want to have fun rather than give them a specific lesson at home. There are countless games we can play many with just a pen and paper. When Otis started reading c-v-c words (consonant-vowel-consonant) he loved playing Zingo. More recently we... Read more →

Pictured: Year 2 Qld Half Page Ruled Paper / Cursive hand-writing sheet provided by our Montessori school / Early Years Dictionary Qld I have found that Montessori classrooms vary in their approach to spelling in the elementary (primary) years. This is an idea that I received from a Montessori teacher and have adapted to use at home. I introduced a personal dictionary to Otis when he was almost six and... Read more →

About Dogs / Animals Under Our Feet / About the Ocean / About Bugs / Endangered Animals Do you have a learner reader at home? Otis is still learning to read. He will read independently at school but at home, he is sometimes hesitant and on most occasions, he will ask for me to read to him. Elaine recently recommended this series of books and I ordered them immediately, they... Read more →