Friday, October 05, 2007

Montessori ideas for 2.5yo's

As per Jane's request, here are some activities that many 2.5yo's can participate in:

Practical Life:
-slicing a banana: I can not tell you how many bananas my son and nephew sliced
-pouring: start small and not very messy--I gave her two small Tupperware cups yesterday with about 5 Cheerios in one; you can use food they can eat afterwards, beans, rice (naturally requires a little more dexterity); with water, you REALLY need to start small and ideally with a child-sized pitcher (which can be a creamer) and just a few drops to start with
-spooning: like pouring, but in bowls with a spoon
-grasping: can be done before spooning: child uses hands to transfer things from one bowl to another; can also be done with 'pinching' where the child moves only one item at a time (have to start with a BIG material if doing that with a little one)
-cleaning with their very own, cut-down-to-their-size sponge--they can be shown a place where they can clean the wall, the window, the table, the chair...
-sweeping: I managed to find a child-size broom at a dollar store; it's still a little on the large side for my niece, but it's much more manageable for than the huge broom; I've known at least one mom to get a regular wooden broom and have it cut short (not sure what she did about the end, if she sanded it nice and smooth or covered it in some way)
-dusting


Other things I can think of :
-sorting objects by colour (starting with just one colour, like blue, and having the child find all the blue objects among the objects in a basket or set out on the table for him; of course, this assumes the child already knows what blue is; if not, specific lessons on red, blue and yellow could be given)
-having sound baskets (a little basket with objects, ideally, or pictures of things that all start with the same sound--should be gone through the first time with the child; after that, they will often just go through the things on their own, saying them out loud);
-stacking cups or blocks (as a pink tower substitute)
-simple wooden puzzles (the ones with the knobbed pieces; having one with the basic shapes--triangle, square, circle--is really good)
-painting (rocks is especially popular, but painting just about anything is considered great fun; 2yo's do fine with just having one colour because all they want to do is cover the surface)
-carrying big things for you (what's with them and loving to have something just as big as they are??)
-for the parent willing to put it together, Classified Pictures. These are picture cards based on categories, for example, a set could be on the bedroom (with a main card showing a full bedroom), with a card bearing a picture of a bed, another with a picture of a dresser, etc. You can also do animal sets, or beach sets, whatever you wish. These sets are looked at first by themselves, then you can mix 2 sets and the child has to sort them. One website which can help with this is http://www.montessorimaterials.org/lang.htm#class
-dressing frames or some means of the child to practise zipping, buttoning (would need to be BIG buttons with big holes for a 2.5yo), buckling...

Two great websites for other ideas (although, keep in mind they are primarily for ages 3-6, but the easiest stuff for the 3's is still often very do-able by 2.5yo's) are http://www.montessoriworld.org/ and http://eiu.edu/~cfsjy/mts/_link.htm (look mainly in the practical life and sensorial for both sites). I just happened upon this page http://www.fmployola.com/materials.htm which has some great pictures.

hth!

2 comments:

Daisy said...

Another website with a great picture of a boy pouring:

http://www.childrenstree.com/primary.htm

Jane said...

Thank you - plenty of ideas for me to use with Sam....many of them are a normal part of our lives anyway - just things we do day to day but its interesting to see them actually named as an activity specific to the age.

I'm off to check out the websites now - thank you!