Sunday, October 9, 2011

Montessori Monday

This week went by so fast! Wow! I can't say that I have as many activities to share as I usually do, but in a way that's great! Ty has really been into many of the other works I've created in the last few weeks, so we're still frequently working with those.

I'm trying to feel Ty out on letter introduction, as he's definitely in a sensitive period but not as into the three period lessons as he once was. Here I used three letters from his alphabet mat (they're capital letters but I used three that look the same as they would in lowercase form) and the matching sandpaper letters. First he put the letters in the puzzles, (which gave him a feel and good visual awareness of the shape of the letters), while also saying each letter sound. His work was to then trace and match the sandpaper letters to the foam letters. He enjoyed this! I wish the alphabet mats came in lowercase letters. I won't have many letters left to use in this way soon.

I also used our duplicate sandpaper letters in a matching activity. The box of letters came with two "y"'s, as it can be used as a vowel or a consonant, but his set also came with two "d"'s and two "n"'s. I can't figure out why this is (if you can clue me in I"d appreciate it), but it has worked for this activity! We named the letter sounds, traced the letters, then matched them. He was very into tracing the letter "y" over and over again which I found interesting.

Using extra paint chips that I've had lying around for over a year, I created this color sorting game. Though I know color sorting isn't difficult for him, the chips show a wide variety of each color within the spectrum, and my hope is that he will begin to observe this while sorting and laying them down. I don't think he's quite ready for lining them up light to dark yet, but this is my way of getting him to notice that colors have various shades, starting with the primary colors.

This activity uses an old business case and sturdy note cards and post cards. Tyler's job is to put the cards into the pockets of the case, which requires pulling the pocket with one hand and inserting the card with another. I used kitty cards (he just loves cats!) to entice him, which worked really well! There's also a zipper on the case for him to practice zipping. 

Another practical life (and holiday!) activity we've done a lot of is playing dress-up. It may seem a lot like pretend/imaginary play, but getting those items on and off is great independent dressing work too!

Yesterday we went to a neighborhood fall festival with music, local artists and family activities. It seems like most parents avoid the artist tents at these events, but I really enjoy showing and talking to Ty about all different types of paintings, pottery, crafts etc. He really enjoys checking out certain styles of paintings. Some draw him in and others he could care less about and it's interesting to see where his tastes lie. 

We were lucky enough to catch one artist at work who stopped to tell us a little about what she was doing and what tools she was using. Tyler watched as she painted petals of a sunflower with a palette knife.

After a while, Tyler really felt like digging into the paint and "helping" her, so we had to say goodbye.  :) 

We all got a happy surprise when we entered the children's area. There were tables set-up for the kids to paint and decorate their own pumpkin for only one dollar! Ty could have stayed all evening painting pumpkins and I was glad that he could get his painting fix in!

At home this week, we painted with Lego's that I recently received in a random Freecycle box. He printed with them as well as dragged them down the paper to make lines. Pretty fun!

We also painted fall colors with a brush.

Gross Motor
After not using it for a while, Ty's Kangaroo Climber has fallen into favor again, and he's using it in new, more sophisticated ways. We are so thankful for an extra room to put this in for use whenever he wants!

We ventured to a playground that we've only been to once before. There were tons of ladders and rocks walls for Tyler to work his muscles and coordination with, as well as this interesting apparatus that you swing back and forth on while balancing. Ty really enjoyed jumping on and swinging this to challenge himself!

We went to Open Gym where it was balloon week! Tyler had to try to do just about everything everything with at least one balloon in his hand, which whether he knew it or not, required more skill. Great idea! 

Thank you to all who are now following me on Facebook! I'm hoping to not only alert followers to my recent blogs posts, but to provide links to interesting articles, other blogs, as well as to post inspiring Montessori quotes and facts. If you're not following yet and would like to, you can "like" the box here in my blog or visit my page here!

Linking-up with Tot School and Living Montessori Now!


  1. What an awesome learning week! We missed our fall art festival last month, but have another one coming up in November. It will be interesting to see what artwork my 22 month old is drawn to. I think mine would like the firetruck too!

  2. What a great week! Using costumes for practical life is a great idea. I know my little girl is very interested in trying to dress herself right now. I have had the costumes packed up for a while as to not have them strewn all over the house for no reason, but perhaps it is time to bring them back out.

  3. Are you sure your blue n isn't really a u :) I''m also curious if you really have two d's. It is hard to tell the b,p,d, q apart. The space for holding the letter is on the left side for your hand so if you line up all of the letters with the left side space and the letter on the right I wonder what you actually have.

    Or maybe the company just really liked you and wanted you to have extras :)

  4. Thank you Heidi for saying what many others may have been thinking. Yes, you're right! I am quite famous for my common sense issues; this is good one to add to the big funny list my husband has going in his head... I appreciate you pointing it out and telling me how to tell them apart! :)


  5. I love the creative activities you come up with for your son, Jen! Your activity with the business card case shows that it's easy to find awesome practical life activities around the house. And I added your color sorting activity to my DIY Sensorial Extensions Pinterest board at Thanks so much for linking up with Montessori Monday!