Tuesday, August 01, 2006

Plans for today

I only had my niece and nephew for a few hours yesterday. Not enough to start up any sort of routine or work with them on anything, especially since we only got back from being out of town about 2 hours before they came!

I will have them the full day today and am hoping to do a few things. I need to find a small box in which to put my *Sandpaper Letters, the **100-chain and a few books to read to them. I also want to pull potting soil out of the shed and the kids and I will repot a poor plant of mine, probably while my niece is having her nap. If the weather is okay, we'll also take a nice walk with the dog, who's not only slowing down a bit in her old age, but is simply out of shape because we never walk her.

I haven't re-read enough of Montessori from the Start in the activity sections yet to have something prepared for my niece, but she's super clingy right now and will probably just hang onto me for today. I'll have to just have her 'help me' do stuff. :) One of the things we are doing today is going to a dollar store to try to find some things for her little shelves in the kitchen: a little glass pitcher (probably a creamer), small matching bowls and plates, small cutting board and a cloth placemat with matching napkin. If I can find those today, then later in the week I can look for a small chair for her for at the little table we have. Although, I should test it out today with the little stools we have--the small table may actually be too big and the little chair may be pointless.

**For those unfamiliar with Montessori**
*Sandpaper Letters are letters cut out of sandpaper and placed on a board or thick paper. The 'teacher' tells the child the sound of the letter, they come up with different words beginning with that sound, then the teacher shows the child how to trace over the sandpaper in the way we would write the letter. This allows the child a very sensorial experience in learning the sounds of the alphabet. I will add that children in Montessori usually begin writing simple words before they begin reading.

**The 100-chain (one of several available chains in a classroom, but one of only 2 in my home) is made up of 10 bead bars, each with 10 beads on them. These bead bars are part of the Golden Beads material, on which Base Ten sets are based. The kids love these chains and it gives them practice in counting up and down by 1, as well as counting up and down by 10 and it can be folded to show how 10x10 makes a square, or 10-squared. There are little number labels that go at each joint, where one bead bar meets the next. I also have a 1000-chain which is so long, it doesn't fit straight out anywhere in my house! That will wait until they're pretty good at counting on the 100-chain.

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