A slow start

20 days into the new year and I am not posting to this blog as regularly as I'd like. I certainly hope to post at least once a week or more.

What have we been working on?
Transferring dried pasta elbows with a spoon. This also evolved into pouring when Bubba got impatient. I think next time we will use less pasta so he achieves the goal within a few (3-5) scoops.

(Art Kit Photo)
As an almost daily request Bubba brings me his art kit and asks to "cor" (color). His art kit is a great idea for kids of all ages. Thanks to Grandpa Bob, he (and his cousins) got the best toolbox to be had.
(Art Kit Contents)
This is wonderful because as you can see it is filled with markers, crayons, chalk, paints, paintbrushes, colored pencils & a ruler. Now I just need to make/buy a waterproof smock and floor mat to be comfortable using the paints.
What do you use for managing art supplies?
(Art Desk Photo)
Another fantastic addition (thanks again Grandpa) is the new art easel/desk. This has a chalk board surface when an easel and a smooth dry erase surface when a desk. It is adjustable so it should last for years to come.

It may go against the Montessori idea (I'm not sure) to use flash cards but we have also been having much success with them. Bubba is starting to use words but like walking he seems to reserve his efforts until he is ready to run. Out of 36 cards he attempts to say 25 words after me. There are even some like car, ball, bird and fish that he will say from picture recognition. This is great because we have only had the cards out about 5 times and each time he attempts more words.
What is your take on flashcards? Do you use them?

I am conflicted about teaching a baby to read. My sister K has decided that she is going to use the BrillBaby method to teach my almost 1 year old niece to read. This is great because it works for them. I am not ready to do something like that with my son. I think that reading will progress naturally through our reading books, using flash cards for item recognition and when we start language studies through the Montessori method.

New Resources

I found another blog resource for at home Montessori education. The Wonder Years couldn't be more aptly named. She did a post today for the under 3 crowd! Of course with Bubba being only 20 months old my tired eyes perked right up. Since we now have a chalkboard I am going to show Bub how to paint with water. Bubble making also seems like something that would be practical for learning about soap and an extension of washing hands. I love her felt rings. Since Bubba got a wooden version of this for christmas we will be working with it more. The family photo album is something I am going to incorporate into our flashcard time. Love the little cleaning tools. Bubba follows me around the house making vroom noises when I swiffer the floors. I think he would make good use of tools like this but I'm not sure if I want to shell out the cash to purchase something like this in the long run. Lots of great ideas. I will be adding this blog to the friends & links over ----------------------------->
Do you have any great Montessori blogs that you'd like to pass my way?

Itty Bitty Love wrote this post today and I was in awe. Better words wouldn't have crossed my lips. Thanks Anne. I want to add the words RESPECT, DIGNITY & FAIRNESS as well as LOVE, FAMILY, PEACE, and INTEGRITY to our walls someday soon.
What words would you put on your walls?


Annicles said...

I don't think flash cards are much in the spirit of Montessori and your little boy is very young. Rather than worrying about teaching him to read, it would be better to be putting activities in his environment that allow him to explore and develop his powers of concentration and motor skills. There is a great new site called The Making of a Montessori Mum. Her little girl is a similar age to your little boy. Also check out Chasing Cheerios!

What a lot of people forget is that you can teach a child to recognise letters and whole words but that is still not reading. Reading is when a child can decipher letters and put them together and give them meaning - the same meaning every time. Developmentally speaking that usually happens around 4-5 years. Before that there isn't the understanding.

Later (from age 3) you could make 2 copies of flash cards and play matching pairs and memory games with them - they are far more valuable than simple flash cards.

Oh dear. I sound as if I am very down on you and I don't mean to. I don't see the point in teaching children what they are not delvelopmentally ready to do - it wastes their time and prevents them from doing what they really ought to be doing. At your sons age that should be lots of exploring surroundings, textures, art materials, anything he's interested in. Don't forget that process is far more important than product. That is particularly important with art. Children under the age of 2 rarely name what they have produced although they may give it a random name to keep you happy! Often they'll just want to make the biggest, glooiest mess possible. Cornflour and water in a big bowl are good. Playdoh is great - see My Montessori Journey for the best recipe in the world! Most importantly - enjoy yourselves!

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