Saturday, 28 August 2010

New Beginnings

I started this blog just over a year ago to document my journey with my daughter as I learned about the Montessori method. Well it turned out to be soooo much more than that! Over the course of the year I have learned so many things not only about the Montessori method but have also been inspired by many other educational methods. I had no idea when I started what a wonderful adventure I would be going on and how many special people I would be meeting along the way. Thank you to each and every one of you who leave supportive comments and write wonderful inspirational blogs.

I feel that at this point L and I are moving forward on our journey and in a sense moving on along a slightly different path. As L is starting Montessori pre-school in a couple of weeks and I will be looking for part time work I feel that this blog has come to it's natural conclusion. Although using the title "Montessori Beginnings" was very helpful and appropriate when I started I have learned so much that I would like to include other ideas and activities now as well. I guess I'm feeling a little hemmed in by the title of my blog.

Of course I couldn't possibly leave the blog world because I feel that all of you fellow bloggers give me so much inspiration, ideas and support. Instead I decided to start another blog.
My new blog is called about a girl and I will still be posting about Montessori but will also be posting about a lot of other things we are up to. I would really appreciate if you would check it out and if you think it is something you'd be interested in then by all means please sign up and follow : ) At the moment I have no plans on deleting this blog.

I'm looking forward to the next path on our journey and hope to see many of you along the way.

Friday, 27 August 2010

Fantastic Printable Materials

We've been trying out these printable materials from Montessori for Learning and L is really enjoying them.  The website is a fantastic resource.  Along with having a membership area it also has tons of great free printable materials. 

Here L is doing the singular/plural activity. 

After putting the pictures in their correct columns she decided to match all of the pictures saying "one ant, three ants"
We also enjoyed learning about the names of the fingers.  We talked about the different names and then placed them on the hand together.  She then did the activity with the control card.
To help with learning we sang a cute little song with actions.
(put hand up in a fist)
Little thumb, little thumb
Where are you?
(pop your thumb up and wiggle)
Here I am, here I am
How do you do?
(close hand into a fist again)
Index finger, index finger
Where are you?
(pop up index finger and wiggle)
Here I am, here I am
How do you do?
continue on for all fingers.
then finish with
(both hands in fists)
Fingers all, fingers all
Where are you?
(open both hands and wiggle fingers)
Here we are, here we are
How do you do?
L absolutely adored singing this song and after a few times she matched the labels to her own fingers.

Mystery words.  Sooo much fun.  You have to use a mirror to read these secret words. 

These are just a few of the many great activities we've been trying from Montessori for Learning.

Tuesday, 17 August 2010


L has reached an age where she really enjoys playing games.  Here are a few that have been keeping her entertained.
Digging for objects I've hidden in some sand in her pail and then matching them with the correct word.  (yes I accidentally put hen down twice!) I got the idea for this one from Montessori for Learning.
 Counting the garden.  Always fun.  I drew small pictures of different things in our garden and then we went around together.  L counted and I wrote down the number beside the picture.
 The rhyming game.  I saw this on The Activity Mom and knew I could quickly whip up one of my own.  I used pictures, words that L can read and larger words that I had to read.  The object of the game is when you get a card that rhymes you put a penny on the happy face.  When it doesn't rhyme you put one on the sad face.  We play until all of the faces are covered.  At first L didn't really get this but by the second time she was understanding and enjoying!
 Go Fish.  We just started playing this last week and L can't get enough of it.  She always asks "can we play goldfish?"  I used the number cards from a game we have called Phase 10.  At the moment we are using four cards of each number from one to seven and each player gets five cards to start.   You get rid of any pairs and then ask another player if they have a card that matches one of yours.  If they don't they say "go fish" and you have to pick a card from the ones in the middle.  The first player to get rid of all of their cards wins.  This game is so fantastic for number recognition and I could imagine making up your own number cards in the shape of fish!
What I like best about all of these games is you can whip them up in very little time and they cost virtually nothing to make!

Friday, 13 August 2010

Water activities

L has been enjoying doing water activities outdoors. 
First I set her up with a sponge and two bowls.  She soaked up the water from the left hand bowl and squeezed it into the right hand bowl until she was done.  She looked at me like "too easy Mom!" so I then gave her this sieve and we put some twigs and flowers into the bowl for her to remove. 

Once she'd done that a few times we moved on to making bubbles with an old hand held beater.
Oh the concentration!!

The best water activity of all was helping to wash the dog! Granny also got very wet in the process!
The next day L asked for more water activities so she started with dropping single drops of water into her plastic fish.
I then colored these dots on a folded paper towel.  Some of them have two colors together so they blend to make a new color when wet.  She really enjoyed this and when she was finished I gave her a blank paper towel and a red, yellow, and blue marker to experiment with.

Sunday, 8 August 2010

Story stones and August nature table

After reading about these story stones on Counting Coconuts I thought it would be something both L and I would really enjoy.  L still brings out her Peter and the Wolf puppets and wants to put on the puppet show all  the time.
One of our favorite stories that I tell L when she's warming up from swimming in the ocean is The Enormous Turnip.  This was the first story I decided to do with our stones we collected from the beach.  I just used acrylic paint and then covered the stones with a layer of Modge Podge.

While I was painting those L was painting stones to represent the animals from Brown Bear, Brown Bear.  Once they were finished she matched them up to her book.
We then put them in order all around our nature table.  The little girl represents the children : )
We also made some colored sand the same way we made colored rice and added some glitter.  It looks much more spectacular in real life!
We Modge Podged some sea glass to make it sparkle!
Hope you are all enjoying summer's radiant, heart warming sunshine!  Happy story telling.

Thursday, 5 August 2010

Gnomey Fun

Gnome jumping.  I think L had more fun with this than the gnomes ; )

Gnome circle time.  We made the accordion books from Childhood Magic last week and L wanted to make some for the gnomes.
First outdoor gnome outing.
Granny made them this little gnome carrying sleeping bag.  L is showing them all around her garden.
For a tutorial on how to make one of these you can visit WeeFolkArt.

Wednesday, 4 August 2010

L's summer fun

Napkin rolling with these cute little napkin rings.

Painting al fresco
Excavating treasures in ice with friends using spray bottles, pick axe, salt, forks, and hot water.
Painting rocks to put in the Enchanted Forest.
Walking through the woods finding all of the magical treasures and places to leave the rocks.
Reading her body book then getting me to trace around her like the girl in her book.  She lost interest in coloring the parts after the head and instead put all of the parts of the puzzle in their correct places. 
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