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Showing posts from September, 2018

Beeswax Projects for You and Your Kids

The change in the season seems to have motivated me to do a whole lot of nothing this year. I just want to sit inside and do all the cozy things. Read under a pile of blankets, bake all the pumpkins, and light all the candles. Beeswax is really calling me lately, as weird as that sounds! There's just something about the smell of beeswax and the warmth of the light. So give me all the beeswax things! 
Thankfully, I don't seem to be the only that feels that way, because there are some really great ideas on how to incorporate beeswax into your autumn projects. Here are a few that have been inspiring me. 

Homemade Beeswax Polish |  Wax-Dipped Autumn Leaves | DIY Beeswax Lanterns | Beeswax Window Ornament | Burn All the Candles {Eloise at Mighty Mother is a constant source of candle inspiration} | Pumpkin Beeswax Candles
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Beeswax can also so easily be incorporated into your children's art projects! I love these Autumn Candle …

Our Outdoor Autumn Essentials

The weather is finally turning cooler here with the arrival of Autumn this week. The days are shorter, cooler, windier, and rainier. But, this doesn't mean it's time to stay inside! There are so many amazing sensory experiences to be had in the Fall. There's apple picking, leaf hunts, gourds and pumpkins, and tons of busy animals. A few plants are living their last days and some are long gone. Bottom line, we can't stay inside! 
But, with the change of season, we need to make sure we are prepared for our outdoor adventures and our outdoor work! Here are a few of our outdoor essentials for Autumn.

1. Oaki Rainsuit - This rain suit is amazing ALL through the year, but really really great for the Autumn. It's lightweight and easy to put on, but it keeps kids dry! They come in, take it off and go on their way. The suit can be hosed off if muddy or just hung to dry! 

Ideas for use: get outside no matter the weather, puddle stomping, hikes, playing in the rain, adding a b…

5 Montessori DIYs For Babies

I love a good DIY! Whenever I have the opportunity to create something that will work for my kids, I do! No matter how old your child is, with a little creativity, there are many Montessori materials that can be DIYed. Today, I thought I would share 5 of my favorites for babies! 
Octahedron Mobile  All of the Montessori visual mobiles can be DIYed but I picked the Octahedron mobile for two reasons! One, it’s the easiest (in my opinion) and cheapest to make. It’s essentially folding and gluing paper together. Two, it was a total baby-fan favorite over here! With Nora, Gus, my niece, my neighbor’s baby, all the babies, they just love the Octahedron.

This is even a great DIY to tackle if you are expecting a baby! Just hang it above your baby, on a mobile hanger or play bar and let your baby enjoy!
Puzzle Ball  Ok, I’ll be honest here. A puzzle ball isn’t they easiest DIY out there! It requires some knowledge of sewing and some patience but once it’s done, it’s a great toy! I love it bec…

Language Cards for Toddlers

Language work is always popular with toddlers. Right along side gross motor, toddlers are also going through periods of language explosion. In a Montessori home, we offer a lot of different opportunities for language development from birth. To be clear here, I'm not talking about drilling ABCs or other academic work. But, developing rich expressive and receptive language skills. This includes using correct terminology for things from birth, avoiding baby talk, avoiding screens, and constantly talking with your child. 

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There are also opportunities to provide work for your child when it comes to language. And many of those opportunities include the use of language cards! Depending on how old/ready your child is, these cards can be used for a variety of purposes including: 
classificationobject to picture matching (like what Gus is doing here, his cards came from this shop many many years ago) picture to picture matchingmatching o…

Introducing a Montessori Work Mat at Home

Every day Gus seems to be more and more toddler and less and less baby. And as a result he is starting to work and play differently - more purposefully. I can see that he is getting closer and closer to completing a work cycle as he plays. A work cycle means that he chooses a work, sets it up, uses it, completes it, restores it, and puts it away. Along with this Gus has been choosing to work more frequently at a work mat (or work rug). 

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A Montessori work mat or rug is a small carpet that is used to help define a child's work space and speak to a child's sense of order. It gives a child a defined place to set up and use work. They also help reduce the distraction from an area rug. Finally, they can help to provide a thicker and more solid working surface. 
In a Montessori classroom, when a child chooses work on the floor a work mat is used. Here at home, I make work mats available to my children in the spaces where we have w…

Cooking and Baking with Your Toddler

Cooking and baking with toddlers doesn’t have to be intimidating. It doesn’t have to be hard. It doesn’t have to be all or nothing. It doesn't have to look the same as it does when you're cooking with an older child or by yourself. 

Cooking and baking with toddlers is the beginning of a relationship with food and the kitchen. It’s the starting point. It’s meant to be enjoyable. It's a sensory experience. It's meaningful exploration. It's about connection. 

Cooking and baking with toddlers can be messy. It can take a little extra prep work. It can take confidence. It can turn out differently than you expected. But, it can be wonderful. 

Gus makes this no bake recipe with a little prep work. I measured all the ingredients and poured them into bowls I knew he could successfully dump/pour. And, chose to dump the sticky ingredients that needed scraping myself. We had a lovely time and a lovely snack. 

Do you enjoy getting into the kitchen with your toddler? 


Walking through a Toy Rotation - A Step-By-Step Guide

I recently observed that it was time for a some changes in our playroom. While I typically don't change everything at once (and didn't this time either), I do make a change here and there fairly frequently. Then, every now and then, we need a big overhaul. And, that was yesterday. I spent the day cleaning shelves, rearranging, and putting out some new work for Gus (and Nora, but we will focus on Gus here). 
I'm going to walk you through the process and share my thoughts as I went. This will help you get a better look at my process and how I tackle a rotation.  Starting Point 
My initial reaction is that everything is 1. looking cluttered, I want to ignore the shelf too. 2) A lot of this isn't being used right now. I know its still warmer weather so a lot more outside work is happening (gross motor play mostly) but it's time for a change. 3) Open windows means a lot of dust, and everything needs a wipe.
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A Couple Books about Montessori for Children

I obviously love to talk {and teach} about Montessori to adults! I spend a ton of time doing it and its become one of my life's passions. But, what about children? How do you teach children about Montessori? The answer for us has been children's books. Thankfully, there are a couple of great books that are all about Montessori the method, and Maria Montessori the person written for children. 

Each Autumn, I take out the couple that we actually own for my own children to read. I think its super helpful for them to see examples of their classrooms in action in a story setting. They can relate to the books in a much more meaningful way than some of the other "back to school" books on the market. Many of those feature an "authoritative" teacher and children sitting quietly in desks. And, this hasn't been their school experience. 
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Some books about Montessori for Children to consider:  Maria Montessori: a b…

A Look at Some Awesome Montessori Classrooms

Today is the start of the first full week of school for my children. As they each head off to their respective Montessori schools, I think about how lucky they are to attend such awesome Montessori schools. I wish I could give you classroom tours of their rooms, I'm obsessed.

But to be honest, I'm obsessed with all Montessori classrooms! They are such works of beauty and create just the perfect space for children to grow.  I thought I would share some Montessori classroom inspiration for the beginning of the school year.  Infant/Toddler
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