Marie Montessori simply used practical life lessons, using real tools, brooms and china to encourage mental, physical, emotional and spiritual life in children.
Sure I set up activities and supplied art supplies everyday for my kids but sometimes I encouraged even the smallest of my children to help me.
Rachel, at 18 months, loved to hold the hose on the vacuum to suck up every little speck of dirt off the carpet and floor. It used more electricity than I would have but it kept her busy for half an hour. She did miss one tiny thread or crumb! I always let a couple of toddlers wash the plastic cups and plates while I tidied up the kitchen after breakfast. After they were finished their “job”, I peeled off their drenched p.j.s and gave them a morning bath and washed the already wet kitchen floor. This method even conserved water and was very practical bath time for little people who still wore nighttime diapers.
Some days my husband would walk into the kitchen, close his eyes and silently turn around and walk out again. His young family were all baking and he simply could not handle the mess. Flour covered everything and everybody. Someone kids would measure, another hold the beaters or roll out the dough. Little people love to decorate cookies or make their own pizzas or small loaves of bread.
When Matthew was in grade 7 he was proud to learn how to cook; he gathered all his brothers and sisters together and taught them how to make their own pretzels. (This was in 90’s when everyone took 6 weeks each of cooking, sewing and shop in grade 7 and 8.)
As my children matured, they developed their own talents and preferences about their contributions to their family. Because our house was always so busy, I depended on all the kids. They understood that their contributions were important. This was great for their sense of self-worth.
Melissa could dive into a messy bedroom with a younger sibling and organize their room (she uses this talent in a very well-paying job today). Mara made pastry flakier than me at 11 (she is a Red Seal Chef). Rachel always loved to mind the babies (she is an Early Childhood Educator). Emily, from the time she was two, wanted to put outfits together, so she helped the little ones get dressed and sorted through their wardrobe. Today she puts her mother together! Katie is very artistic and patient. She did crafts with Anthony and Lucy. The boys are very handy today because they helped Michael fix cars, renovate and repair anything and everything.
Marie Montessori used practical life, using real tools, brooms and china to encourage mental, physical, emotional and spiritual life in children. It can cost up to $8,000.00 a year to place your child in a well run Montessori school. Try it at home for free; it is fun and kids love to help.
Copyright © 2010 motherofnine9