I recently noticed an activity on Itty Bitty Love (Anne, a Montessori teacher's blog) where her students clicked Carabiners together to make a chain as an activity to develop fine motor skills. I thought it was a fabulous idea and most of all, I knew my three-year-old would love it. Carabiners are simple snap hooks that you can find at camping, hiking, sports, local hardware stores or perhaps even in your garage. Ours are coloured but you can also find them inexpensively in plain colours too. They also come in different sizes. I presented Otto (43 months) with three different... Read more →


Five Fantastic Kickstarter Projects To Support - Right Now!

I recently visited Kickstarter to back Earthtiles new Kickstarter project - Earthtiles Colours! If you are not familiar with Earthtiles they are wooden magnetic tiles for children, previously they were only available in one natural colour. If the Kickstarter campaign is funded the new set will have 100 tiles in five colours and shapes. They are made with sustainably sourced wood and painted with child-safe colours. But Kickstarter is all or nothing, and this project needs your support with only three days to go. By backing this project we can get fresh colours and new shapes of Earthtiles at a... Read more →


We've had a crazy week with the children suffering injury and illness, so today I wanted to share something really bright and cheerful. What could be more cheerful than Montessori home art areas? These areas are doable, practical and also beautiful. In some of these areas you can see specifically what activities are presented, what art materials are used, and the little features that make a difference. All of these areas are impeccably organised. I hope you enjoy! Wow, this family has used Magna-Tiles in the windows to create some wonderful coloured light. I can see large post-it note on... Read more →


I know not everyone has access to a Toy Library, but today I want to share our most recent finds from our local Toy Library. Our Toy Library operates from our Council run Library however to borrow you need a seperate membership card and pay a small fee. We visit the library almost every week and we have found some wonderful toys! Here are seven toys that we currently have on loan. I've included links to some of the items in case you want to see more detail. Hopefully this will give you ideas of toys that might appeal to... Read more →


One of the most important things Montessori has taught me is not to limit the child due to their age, but rather follow their interests and ability. I've also learnt that no matter what we are teaching the child, there is a natural progression, we start with one skill and keep on adding as long as the child's interest and ability keep up. In keeping up with Otto's (43 months) woodworking we've recently introduced a hand drill. Everywhere I read said wait until the child is four before introducing a hand drill, but as he's had so much exposure to... Read more →


I still like to pre-measure all of the ingredients when Otto (3yrs) is cooking. It makes his cooking time faster and so much cleaner. But I feel like it's almost time for him to measure his ingredients himself. So I've started to introduce him to measuring cups. To begin I presented him with the measuring cups, allowing him to look at them and hold them. Then I presented a measuring cup matching tray. I love these Rainbow Fractions Measuring Cups as they as visual measuring cups and are also colour coded. These visual measuring cups have the same radius so... Read more →


Do your children have toys or materials in their bedrooms? I was recently told that Montessori bedrooms do not have toys in them so I thought I would explore this idea further. 🤔 In Montessori from the Start Polk Lillard and Lillard Jessen suggest that for an infant Montessori bedroom parents consider four main areas including areas for sleeping, changing, feeding, and for activity. Polk Lillard and Lillard Jensen go on to suggest parents create a bedroom that encourages concentration and that furthers self-formation "into complete human beings capable of independence, coordinated movement, language and will". For a child in... Read more →


Have you thought about using visual timers with your children? Visual timers can help children: understand the concept of time independently complete activities for a given amount of time set a timer for simple activities transition from one activity to another We use visual timers for: brushing teeth reminding us to check on bread that has been left to rise baking bread and other goods in the oven boiling an egg, cooking rice and other timed kitchen activities learning about time Visual timers could also be used for: timing screen time (for older children) timing baths or showers (for older... Read more →


If it wasn't for Montessori, I wouldn't even think to have my preschooler clean our windows. While we may see window washing as boring or tedious, the child may see it as a fun opportunity to spray water, to use their large muscles to reach, push and pull the window squeegee. At this preschooler age, all of my children have loved window washing. If you don't believe me I invite you to give your young child a small spray bottle and a window squeegee and give it a go! We've had a lot of rain so our windows and glass... Read more →


Hands up if you love tree and branch blocks. They are completely natural, compostable, biodegradable, depending on where you live (and how handy you are) they might be free. They feel good, look good, are non-toxic, and come in lots of different shapes and sizes. My three-year-old is obsessed with Duplo so having some natural blocks around is like an antidote for all that plastic. It's nice to be able to bring new play materials into our home without adding to our environmental footprint, tree and branch blocks are an absolute feel-good toy. Standard cube blocks are reliable and predictable... Read more →


I'm not sure how it started but we have been using a lot of stencils this week. Stencils can be fantastic for developing fine motor skills they also encourage the hands to work together. One hand controls the paintbrush or pencil while the other needs to hold the stencil or paper in place. As you can see on our stencil trays, I have secured the stencil to the tray with tape. The child still needs the supporting hand to keep the paper in place and to hold the stencil down. These trays are for a three-year-old, for an older child... Read more →


Last weekend I attended a felting workshop to make a Waldorf/Steiner birthday placemat and birthday crown. I loved the process (and outcome) so much I couldn't wait to try felting again. I wanted to make an ocean/beach theme play mat for Otto (3yrs) like the ones I'd seen on Etsy (here and here). There is something powerful about making toys and playthings by hand. They are made with love and intention and made specific to the child. The child can see the time and effort that goes into it. It can also show the child how we can work with... Read more →


Recently while visiting friends I noticed my three-year-old using some first words puzzles. He worked on them with focus and completed the whole box of puzzles repeatedly. The puzzles are simple cvc (consonant, vowel, consonant) cardboard puzzles with a word and a corresponding picture. They are self-correcting - so the child can't go wrong in putting them together - perfect for the 3-4 year age group. I started to look for something similar and I found the Big Box of Little Word Puzzles. I like these as the images are photographic and interesting. The letter pieces can be interchanged from... Read more →


We like to provide our children with a wide range of drawing materials. Recently we've been exploring beginner graphite pencils. Graphite pencils can be soft and smooth providing the child with a lovely drawing experience. Until recently I didn't know there were so many beginner graphite pencils to choose from. I selected four to try with my preschooler. After observing my child draw with all four pencils I found the qualities to look in beginner graphite pencils include: soft - easy to leave a mark, provides good feedback, smooth strong - leads won't break short - the shorter the pencil... Read more →


Toddlers can peel - HWM I get most of my Montessori at home ideas from activities I've seen in Montessori classrooms. I've learnt how to put together trays, which tools to use, and how to present the work. It's also useful to observe children in the classroom and see how they respond to the work. But what if you can't get to a Montessori classroom, perhaps watching videos or images online is the next best thing. Today I'm sharing peeling (with a vegetable peeler) work. Not all of these examples are from classrooms, many are from Montessori homes. Adventures in... Read more →