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June 09, 2020

Montessori Materials at Home at 5

Somehow my tiny precious rainbow baby Nora is graduated from Children's House this  past week after 3 years in her classroom. Obviously, with Covid-19 the end of the year has been different than what we had hoped or were expecting. But, it's been a fun glimpse into all the work that she is capable of and a blessing having some extra time with her. 

That being said, her school has been fantastic in supporting her continued learning through this difficult period here at home. One of the first things I did when we knew school was going to move to a distance learning plan was set up a dedicated work shelf for her. Typically, we stick to mostly practical life and open ended toys at home, with just some work to support her here and there. But this time is different. 

So, I thought I would share materials that have been on her shelves to end the school year at home: 


Nora seems to really like math and was just starting to move into work with the chains as school ended. Since we don't have a full set of beads here we weren't able to continue down that path, but we did make do and have some fun. 

DIY Snake Game - I used a set of multiplication beads and some ten bars to create this. While we didn't have the official black and white beads, we used a bread clip to count and mark where she left off when exchanging which worked just as well. 

Stamp Game with assorted papers - she was able to do all 4 functions this way. 

Dot Game Paper - she didn't use this as much as I would have liked, but it was another way to work with big numbers without beads. The papers were given to us by her school.

Tracing and Skip Counting Sheets - these printables were given to us by her school so I'm not sure where they were from, but they were good ways to practice and refine her number writing skills.


Language is another huge area of interest for Nora. She is an emergent reader at this point but loves to write. Most of her language work was writing different stories, lists, or labeling art work that was freely chosen from our art shelves. 

Phonogram reading lists - Nora was working heavily on recognizing and reading phonograms before school was done, these provided nice practice opportunities. We also used as writing prompts when she was interested in writing a story. She would gather one card, then pick three words from that list to incorporate into a story which she would write or draw. 

Language folders - These were organized with some DIY folders I made and this stand. Most of the work came from her guide so I don't have an exact source for it, but there are many similar printables online. 
  • 3 part cards - currently on flowers but we were given multiple sets
  • Sight/puzzle Words 
  • Labeling the Environment Cards - common objects around a classroom (these were adapted for the home)
  • Command Cards - little phrases to read and act out, many of them silly 
  • Adult/Baby Word Matching Cards - these I purchased and were very fun for her. We also used this similar set.

Cursive tracing sheets - These were given to us, but again, good practice for refining her writing skills. These were fairly popular actually. 

Drawing/Writing Journal {similar} - We were given this, but essentially it was part lined paper, part drawing paper. We used for writing prompts or free expression, whatever she felt called to do. 

Silly Sentence Magnet Writing - This was for some silly reading practice.

Practical Life

Even as an almost 6-year-old, practical life is a super important part of Nora's day. Most of it comes from every day work here at home that she chooses to engage in. But her school did send a few things that we added to her shelves. 

Finger knitting - just simple yarn on a tray. She was very proficient at finger knitting before Covid-19 started so this was just an easy add. 

Sewing geometric shapes - same as finger knitting, she was very good at sewing before, but she enjoyed sewing some traced metal inset shapes. 

Yoga cards - just some sample poses to use if she needs movement, she has similar ones in her classroom which she loves. 


Robot Coding Mouse - this is not something I would expect to find in a Montessori school, but was a fun add for our shelves here at home. This is something I would have had out for her even if she was still at school. 

Part of a Biome Cards - both Nora and Henry were able to use this set and will for years to come! 

Continent Bags - these are our alternative to formal continent boxes that I have had since Henry was a homeschooler. They are a collection of pictures, objects, animals and maps from each continent to look at, and think about. 


Nora is not super interested in most of the sensorial work that I have available here at home. But I had one option out for her. 

Knobless Cylinders - she used these a few times, but not extensively. I just happened to have a set here so I went with it. 

And, that's it! Most of this work stayed the same for the entire 3 months that we were home learning. There were some small things that rotated but really the options provided a good variety of activities for daily learning. I was happy to get some more use from my older homeschooling materials as well as get some time to just work with Nora. 

Nora will return to her school for a bit over summer before moving to a new public Montessori school for lower elementary.

What kind of work is your 5-year-old/kindergartener into right now? 


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Ines said…
This is lovely! Thank you! And you have PUBLIC Montessori schools! Envious! Here in Sydney, we pay nearly 19.000 a year for Montessori schooling...