I’m slowly incorporating Montessori into our home! It’s sort of addicting! It’s so much fun that I’m almost obsessed with finding more activities. There are moms out there doing some pretty cool things with their kids. You can find neat DIY ideas on Pinterest, YouTube and WordPress – pretty much everywhere. Moms love to share ideas :). Here are just a few of my recent favorites: Racheous, Jady, MahoganyHomemaker, Pinterest searches. So, what are we up to? This past week has been an explosion of words. Baby B is 16 months old and this week I have really started to hear a few words clearly. This week I heard “water”, “itchy”, “out”, “kitty”, “doggie”, “daddy”, “mama” and “moo”. Everything before sounded like “dadadada”. He could identify lots of things but I think now he’s getting the hang of language. I think using sign language helped but that’s another topic.
Since Baby B is working on words, I created a word display and a word basket. All things I’ve seen other at-home Montessori moms doing. Very cool. I made a place that he could easily see while playing and displayed the word “cow“. He says “moo” for cow. After I made the display, we went over it together. 1.) I had the word written out on a dry erase board. 2.) I spelled out cow with magnets. 3.) I put up a picture of a cow. 4.) I displayed a plastic toy cow. 5.) I let our dog stand in the picture because he looks like a small, baby cow (seriously). Baby B loved it! Later when we were talking about a cow he ran over to the display and yelled “moo!” We are still working on saying cow but that will come. As long as he loves learning, I’m in! I also created a word basket (sorry no picture). I put a few objects in the basket that were common and around the house. I used a cup, ball, rock and small foam bird. We sat on a pillow and I showed him each object while I said the word slowly. He played with them and put them in his mouth. Then I asked him to find each object I named and hand it to me. Good time to practice please and thank you. As you can see, the game can be expanded very easily. You could talk about colors, numbers, stories and matching. There are many possibilities.
We are experimenting with homemade play dough this week. I made a batch of whole wheat play dough. The recipe was from Elizabeth G. Hainstock’s “Teaching Montessori in the Home.” That book has lots of great activity ideas. I borrowed it from the library along with “Teach Me To Do It Myself” by Maja Pitamic.
Play Dough (Clay) pg 84
3 cups flour, 1 cup salt, 1 cup water (with coloring), and 1 T oil
I used whole wheat flour and it turn out fine. Baby B liked to smash it and pull it apart. I gave him a small, wooden hammer to pound it. We also practiced pounding with our hands. I rolled it into long snake-like strips and let him practice cutting with a toddler knife. Today I saw him cutting his dinner food so I think it helped! We also did finger painting with Veggie Baby Finger Paint by Wee Can Too. I bought this at The Baby Grocery Store along with several healthy snacks. He loved finger painting and stayed at it much longer than he does with crayons. He didn’t even try and eat it! Amazing. 🙂