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)

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
-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 and (look mainly in the practical life and sensorial for both sites). I just happened upon this page which has some great pictures.



Daisy said...

Another website with a great picture of a boy pouring:

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!