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Tuesday, June 28, 2022

Montessori Home: Summer Snack Boxes

Summer is upon us here and it is in full swing. And with it the size of my children's stomach has somehow doubled - just kidding! But, seriously, home for the summer somehow means that my children want nothing to do with meals and just want to eat 1,000 snacks all day long. Well, that sounds great, except for our actual food supplies and budget! So, this summer we are trying something new here to give our children access to the snacks but also limit complete free range snacking. ...
Friday, June 24, 2022

Two Montessori Baby Mobiles to Love at 4-Months-Old

I have a thing for Montessori baby mobiles! I think they are just a great way to provide opportunities for concentration, stimulation, and movement from babies before they can do a whole lot with other toys. For the four children I have used them here at home with, the exact mobiles that have been interesting to my kids has changed each time. It really speaks to how much of an individual each baby is right from birth....
Thursday, June 23, 2022

3 Tips for Observing Toddlers in Your Montessori Home

Observation is one of our most powerful tools as a Montessori parent. It is through observation that we learn what our children need, where their interests lie, and how well our environments are meeting their needs. Observation answers so many of the questions we have as parents and caregivers. One of my favorite things to ask myself lately has been, "but, why?" This question truly can only be answered through observation....
Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Montessori Play Shelves at 5-Years-Old

It's been a little while since I've shared the materials on Gus' play shelves here in our Montessori home. As a reminder, Gus is 5.5-years-old and attends a Montessori school. So, while you won't find many Montessori materials here on our shelves, you will things that support his interests, and build upon the skills he may be working on at school. ...
Monday, June 20, 2022

Shelf Help S2 Ep 22 - A Listener Q&A

In this week's episode, Nicole and Amy answer listener's Montessori questions. This episode includes a lot of different topics including tummy time, cursive learning, phones and screens and routines. There's a little bit of something for everyone here! ...
Sunday, June 19, 2022

Starting Practical Life with Babies - A Simple Activity

Babies, like all children, are people of their time and place. They are quietly absorbing everything around them - from what we are saying to them, to what we are doing, to what we see, they are soaking it all in. From the extraordinary to the mundane, our babies learn by being with us, connecting with us, and participating where they can....
Friday, June 17, 2022

Second Plane Parenting: Family Expectations

Summer break is just beginning here and so is a whole new routine for the next few months. Henry, Nora, and Gus* are all home from their respective Montessori schools and enjoying a relaxed summer of following their interests and enjoying self-directed activity. But, with that comes a whole lot of time at home, a lot of togetherness, and plenty of second plane disorder....
Tuesday, June 14, 2022

Montessori Friendly Toys: Fun Frame Puzzles

Recently, I was looking through and organizing my puzzle collection in preparation for a big renovation project that we have going on here this summer. While I was doing that I was reminded of one of my kids' favorite puzzles - a frame puzzle of a garden scene . I was looking at it and realized it's really unique in that it is a frame puzzle with a larger number of pieces and also that the control of error included words to read. Love. ...
Monday, June 13, 2022

Shelf Help S2 Ep. 21 - Following the Child In Public

Children are meant to exist in the world - not just their homes. In this week's episode, Nicole and Amy discuss how they prepare themselves and their environments to take their children into public. We review our mindsets, the limits we set, and how we allow for respectful freedom outside of our homes in both adult and child centered spaces. ...
Saturday, June 11, 2022

When Your Baby is Frustrated

Babies are just like all people - they come in all temperaments. Some are happier, some are fussier, some are more on the go, while others still are more chill. But, no matter what adjectives describe your baby, one thing is certain, they will experience a wide variety of emotions. Babies, again like everyone, get happy, tired, frustrated, or sad. Our job as Montessori parents, is not to prevent emotions but help guide our children through them. ...
Thursday, June 9, 2022

Bubble Wrap Tray Activity for Toddlers

Sometimes the best activities are the simplest. Teddy isn't a kid that loves a lot of shelf or tray work. But every now and then, something will really call to him and meet his needs. When that happens, he can't get enough. And, this bubble wrap tray activity has completely enthralled Teddy this week. ...
Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Montessori Toddler: An Interest In Recycling

If you've followed us closely for any length of time then you probably know that Teddy loves trucks. Construction trucks, transportation trucks, city trucks - any and all trucks have his heart. For a long time, garbage day has been super awesome for him as all the trucks come up and down the street. Recently, however, he noticed that the two different trucks stop at our house - the garbage and the recycling. This has spurred an unexpected interest in recycling. So, I thought I would share how we are supporting that interest here at home. ...
Friday, June 3, 2022

Natural Gross Motor Development: We Have Motion

Babies are born moving, and they are moving well before that. These early movements are a lot more subtle than the movement that is to come. First moving their eyes and head, then arms and legs. The movement is generally fairly uncoordinated, and there's not much (outward) purpose for that movement. Overtime, that movement becomes more coordinated and eventually that movement leads to motion. ...
Wednesday, June 1, 2022

The Age of Rudeness

When your baby is born and you look into their beautiful face you never imagine (or at least I didn't) that one day they are going to tell you that your hair needs to be combed, that your butt is big, or that you look old. But, guess what, it's actually pretty likely. The age of rudeness is a thing. Maria Montessori identified the second plane of development (ages 6 to 12) as a time of tremendous inner growth for children. They start to get louder, chat more, and push back against limits and boundaries. ...