The Montessori approach provides students with the proper environment and necessary support for self-directed activities. This allows children to acquire new skills as naturally as possible. Many parents recognize the benefits of a Montessori education and want to introduce these techniques as early as possible. You can help your child prepare for school with these activities.
Four Activities to Try at Home
The Montessori method contains four main areas of learning: Practical Life, Sensorial, Language and Mathematics. These activities introduce each of these areas to students between 12 - 24 months old.
Practical Life activities help children gain more independence.
- Teaching your child how to pour from a pitcher increases motor skills. You will need two small unbreakable pitchers. Fill one pitcher a third of the way with puffed rice cereal. Demonstrate how to hold and pour the puffed rice from one pitcher to the other. If your child spills the rice, show him how to put the rice back into the pitcher and try again.
Sensorial activities help to develop the child's five senses.
- Playing a matching game helps children to sharpen their visual skills. You will need any number of paired objects. Place one group of objects near your child. Place the other group farther away. Pick up an object from one group and then have your child bring you the same object from the other group. If your child is correct, choose a new object. If the object is incorrect, replace both objects and try again.
Language activities are designed to sharpen listening, speaking, reading and writing skills.
Spell Your Name
- Every child needs to know how spell her own name. You will need wooden letters or refrigerator magnets. Show your child how to combine the letters to spell her name. Mix up the letters and have your child rearrange them in order. Older children can learn the name of each letter in their name.
Mathematics activities focus on recognizing and using numbers.
Say and Match Numbers
- Children can learn to recognize numbers from 1 - 10 at a very young age. You will need wooden numbers or refrigerator magnets and a piece of cardboard with outlines of the numbers in order. Show your child how to place the correct number on top of its outline. Mix up the number and let your child try. Older children can learn the names of each number.
The St. John the Baptist Catholic Montessori School preschool program offers students in the Excelsior area a head start in school. Call 952-474-5812 to talk with an enrollment officer.
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