Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Montessori-Inspired Travel Activities Using Free Printables

By Deb Chitwood from Living Montessori Now 

Family travel is such a fun summer activity that we're having a whole month of travel activities! I'm sharing both travel activities and free travel printables, including my new Montessori-inspired travel pack (subscriber freebie at LivingMontessoriNow.com)! 



You'll find many activities for preschoolers through first graders throughout the year along with presentation ideas in my previous posts at PreK + K Sharing. You'll also find ideas for using free printables to create activity trays here: How to Use Printables to Create Montessori-Inspired Activities

At Living Montessori Now, I have a post with resource links of Free Printables for Montessori Homeschools and Preschools. 

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links (at no cost to you).

Montessori Shelves with Travel Themed Activities

Montessori Shelves with Travel-Themed Activities

You’ll find Montessori-inspired travel numbers, letters, and and more (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber)

I always have related books available throughout a unit. On the top shelf, I have Transportation Long Ago and Today and Cars, Trains, Ships & Planes. My son-in-law was having lots of fun with the Cars, Trains, Ships & Planes book! It's an amazing DK book designed for ages 8 on up. My 5-year-old granddaughter, Zoey, loves to look through big books like that, so it's part of our unit!

On the right side of the shelf ( book on a wooden cookbook holder), I have National Geographic Kids Little Kids First Big Book of Things That Go. Zoey and I absolutely love this book series for a variety of themes! On the middle shelf, you'll see the Time for Kids book Take Off! All About Airplanes. I have a number of other travel books in book baskets. Watch for my upcoming post about transportation and travel books for kids!

You could mix your travel themed activities among your shelves according to curriculum area. Or you could have a special travel-themed area something like the one pictured. My shelves this month have a mixture of skill levels. Many of the activities can be adapted for a variety of levels. If you’re a homeschooler, just choose the activities that work for your child’s interests and ability levels. If you don’t have room for all the activities you’d like to do, simply rotate them.

License Plate Game Road Trip Game

Transportation Books with License Plate Game Tray

Free Printable: License Plate Road Trip Game from iMom

Free Printable: U.S. Map from Wikimedia

For the license plate road trip game, I printed out 2 copies of the license plates and an 8½x11" copy of the map. I cut apart all the license plates from one copy of the printable. I kept the second page of license plates together. I placed everything on a Multicraft tray along with a miniature vehicle.

This activity was one of Zoey's very favorite educational activities!


Having Fun with the License Plate Game





We pretended we were traveling the U.S. in the Micro Machine RV. We have Micro Machines from when my kids were little. Unfortunately, they're hard to find now and are often very expensive. You could also use the car from the Safari Ltd. On the Road TOOB. Any vehicle will be way too big for the map, but Micro Machines and Safari Ltd. vehicles work better than most.

You could use a blindfold, but I just had Zoey close her eyes and draw a license plate from the bowl. She loved discovering which state's license plate she drew! Then she would place the license plate on the page of license plates and drive the RV to that state on the map.

We didn't make it to all 50 states before it was time for Zoey to go home, but we traveled to many of them!

Letter J Sandpaper Letter with J for Jet Font Card and a_e Plane Phonogram Activity

Free Printables: Jet Letters for letter j font cards and a_e plane phonogram cards (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber)
Free Printable: a_e sound with pictures and letters from MontessoriSoul
I set this up to show how you could use beginning sound printables for a younger child along with the phonogram work for an older child. For a younger child, you could feature a sandpaper letter to go with the unit.
I'll be adding the "ai" for train phonogram card and "sh" for ship phonogram card in a week or so. Zoey reads words and books with the phonograms already, but I still like to include the appropriate ones in our unit studies to help with spelling.
If you would like help with introducing phonetic sounds, introducing objects with sounds, or beginning phonics in general, check out my DIY Beginning Montessori Phonics with Preschoolers.
Letter J Sandpaper Letter with J for Jet Font Card and a_e Plane Phonogram Activity

Free Printables: Jet Letters for letter j font cards and a_e plane phonogram cards (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber)

Free Printable: a_e sound with pictures and letters from MontessoriSoul

I set this up to show how you could use beginning sound printables for a younger child along with the phonogram work for an older child. For a younger child, you could feature a sandpaper letter to go with the unit.

I'll be adding the "ai" for train phonogram card and "sh" for ship phonogram card in a week or so. Zoey reads words and books with the phonograms already, but I still like to include the appropriate ones in our unit studies to help with spelling.

If you would like help with introducing phonetic sounds, introducing objects with sounds, or beginning phonics in general, check out my DIY Beginning Montessori Phonics with Preschoolers.

Transportation Pattern Block Activities

Transportation Pattern Block Activities

Free Printable: Transportation Pattern Block Mats from PreKinders

This was super easy to prepare. I just printed out the transportation printables (except for the rocket ship) and placed them on a Multicraft tray with a  Montessori Services basket of pattern blocks. I was given the Spielgaben set, so I used the Spielgaben wooden parquetry tablets from set 7. They fit perfectly, although you need to use the black and white printables because there isn't a trapezoid or yellow hexagon in the Spielgaben set.

I just placed the Spielgaben rhombus and equilateral triangle shapes in the basket because the transportation printables could all be completed using those (for example using a rhombus and equilateral triangle to make a trapezoid). Used in that way it's a bit like the Montessori constructive triangles!

Sand Writing Tray with Transportation Number Rhyme Mats


Sand Writing Tray with Transportation Number Rhyme Mats

Free Printable: Print and Drive Number Rhyme Mats from Preschool Mom

This printable is a high-interest printable and can be used with mini vehicles to "drive" the number. I decided to use the printables printed at 50% with the sand writing tray, though. Used this way, the child uses fingers to trace the number path on the card and then writes the number in the sand.

For the tray, I used the wooden tray from the Melissa & Doug Lace and Trace Shapes. You can use whatever tray or container work best for you, though.

Land, Air, and Water Transportation Addition with Miniature Vehicles and Bead Bars
Land, Air, and Water Transportation Addition with Miniature Vehicles and Bead BarsFree Printable: Land, Air, and Water Transportation Number Cards 1-19 (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber)

Free Printable: 1-10 Spinner (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber)

This activity uses a piece of felt for a table mat (I used the Montessori Services felt table mat) and bead bars from the decanomial box in a Multicraft tray and a Bambu condiment cup (what I used here) or  Montessori Services basket. (My bead bars, which I love, are from Alison’s Montessori. You can get bead bars on Amazon, although I haven’t personally used materials from those companies.) I used vehicles from the Safari Ltd. On the Road TOOBIn the Sky TOOB, and In the Water TOOB.



Having Fun with the Transportation Addition Figures


This was another activity Zoey enjoyed! She used the spinner to choose the numbers, counted out the vehicles, found the matching number cards, and then placed the correct bead bars at the end. Zoey already knows her addition facts, but this was just a fun extension using the Safari Ltd. vehicles. She enjoyed playing with the vehicles afterward!

For a younger child, you could use the number cards for DIY cards and counters or another type of counting activity.

Travel Dictation or Writing Tray

 

Free Printables: Travel Writing or Dictation Pages (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber) 

I used a multicraft tray, the printables, a pencil, colored pencils in the Montessori colors for the continents, and a pencil sharpener for an added practical life activity. Advanced preschoolers on up can write their own story, while younger preschoolers can dictate their answers for you.

Blank World Map with Montessori Continent Map in the Corner

This is included in our subscriber freebie pack, but you won't see it on our shelves. I added this so that you can prepare an activity bag for travel. You'll see an example in my fun and learning with Montessori-inspired world travel activities and games post. You could also use it for another shelf activity if you prefer.

Subscriber Freebie

Montessori-Inspired Travel Pack for DIY Cards and Counters, Number or Letter Matching, Number or Letter Basket, Bead Bar Work, Hands-on Math Operations, Number or Letter Salt/Sand Writing Tray, Letter Tracing, DIY Movable Alphabet, and Creative Writing (subscriber freebie, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password – or check your inbox if you’re already a subscriber)

More Transportation/Travel Resources

Fun and Learning with Montessori-Inspired World Travel Activities and Games

Fun and Learning with Montessori-Inspired World Travel Activities and Games
For more free printables for this unit, go to my post at Living Montessori Now with free travel printables

If you'd like to focus on manners with children, please check out my eBook Montessori at Home or School: How to Teach Grace and Courtesy! It's written for anyone who'd like to feel comfortable teaching manners to children ages 2-12.


Happy trails! 

Deb - Siganture
Deb Chitwood
Deb Chitwood is a certified Montessori teacher with a master’s degree in Early Childhood Studies from Sheffield Hallam University in Sheffield, England. Deb taught in Montessori schools in Iowa and Arizona before becoming owner/director/teacher of her own Montessori school in South Dakota. Later, she homeschooled her two children through high school. Deb is now a Montessori writer who lives in San Diego with her husband of 43 years (and lives in the city where her kids, kids-in-law, and grandkids live). She blogs at Living Montessori Now.

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Monday, April 15, 2019

Montessori-Inspired Cleaning and Tidying Activities Using Free Printables

By Deb Chitwood from Living Montessori Now 

Whether you're a fan of KonMari, minimalism, or just having a clean and tidy environment, I have resources for you today! I'm sharing both cleaning and tidying activities and free cleaning and tidying printables, including my new Montessori-inspired cleaning and tidying pack (subscriber freebie at LivingMontessoriNow.com)! 




You'll find many activities for preschoolers through first graders throughout the year along with presentation ideas in my previous posts at PreK + K Sharing. You'll also find ideas for using free printables to create activity trays here: How to Use Printables to Create Montessori-Inspired Activities

 At Living Montessori Now, I have a post with resource links of Free Printables for Montessori Homeschools and Preschools. 

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links (at no cost to you).

Montessori Shelves with Cleaning and Tidying Themed Activities

Montessori Shelves with Cleaning and Tidying Themed Activities

You’ll find Montessori-inspired cleaning and tidying numbers, letters, and and more (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber) 

I always have related books available throughout a unit. On my top shelf, I have Grace and Courtesy: A Picture Guide for Children and Adults open to the page that says, "I put my work away and make it beautiful for the next person." On the right side of the shelf, I have This Is How We Do It (a wonderful book about children from around the world) open to the 2-page spread on "This is how I help" (book on a wooden cookbook holder). I've added the Montessori continents globe to go with the book on the right. 

On the middle shelf, I have Dust Everywhere, and on the bottom shelf, I have Henry Helps With Laundry. (The author, Beth Bracken, has written a number of Henry Helps books.) These books are all Montessori friendly. 

I have a book basket beside the shelf with Montessori-friendly non-fiction books and some fun fiction books that aren't Montessori-style books. 

You could mix your cleaning and tidying themed activities among your shelves according to curriculum area. Or you could have a special cleaning and tidying-themed area something like the one pictured. My shelves this month have a mixture of skill levels. Many of the activities can be adapted for a variety of levels. 

If you’re a homeschooler, just choose the activities that work for your child’s interests and ability levels. If you don’t have room for all the activities you’d like to do, simply rotate them.

English and Spanish Chore Cards

English and Spanish Chore Card Layout

Free Printables: English and Spanish Chore Cards from Spanish Mama 

These are really versatile. There are also activity cards included, but I just used the cleaning chore cards in both English and Spanish. I'd have the child match them to learn the Spanish words. The child could also choose a chore to do for the day.

B is for Broom and D is for Dustpan Sand Writing Tray

B is for Broom and D is for Dustpan Sand Writing Tray 
Free Printables: Broom letters for letter b writing tray and dustpan letters for letter d writing tray  (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber) 

For the tray, I used the wooden tray from the Melissa & Doug Lace and Trace Shapes. You can use whatever tray or container work best for you, though. This is made extra fun by using the miniature broom from the Montessori Services language objects to write the letters in the sand. 

If you would like help with introducing phonetic sounds, introducing objects with sounds, or beginning phonics in general, check out my DIY Beginning Montessori Phonics with Preschoolers.

ER Phonogram Cards and OO Phonogram Cards

Dust Everywhere Book with Mop and Bucket Movable Alphabet Cards and Duster er Phonogram Card 
These are the materials you can see on the right side of my middle shelf. I’ll  add the “oo" broom phonogram work to the shelf in a week or so. We've had activities with these phonograms before, so I didn't use the booklets from MontessoriSoul. Check my previous posts to see how I use the booklets.

Montessori-Style Sweeping Paper Scraps Number or Addition Game

Montessori-Style Sweeping Paper Scraps Number or Addition GameFree Printable: Dustpan and Brush Numbers 1-19 (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber

Free Printable: 1-10 Spinner (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber)

I used the dustpan and brush from our Melissa & Doug Housekeeping Set, the printables, and 19 red scraps of paper crumpled up. I placed everything on a Multicraft Tray.

Young preschoolers could just spin the spinner, count out the correct number of scraps from 1-10 and drop them on the tray to sweep up.

My 5-year-old granddaughter,  Zoey, loved this game and asked to do it a number of times. Zoey's already learning her addition facts, so we used it to reinforce those.

Sweeping Paper Scraps into Rectangle for Sweeping Addition Game

Zoey would spin the spinner, drop that number of scraps on the tray, spin again to find the next number for the equation, and sweep all scraps into the rectangle made with electrical tape.

Sweeping Paper Scraps into Dustpan for Sweeping Addition Game

Then she would sweep the scraps into the dustpan before pouring them from the dustpan into the small bowl. 

Putting Everything Away After Completing Each Equation

I loved watching the way Zoey put everything away each time before starting the next equation! 

Henry Helps with Laundry Book with KonMari-style Pants and Jeans Folding Activity

Henry Helps with Laundry Book with KonMari-style Pants and Jeans Folding Activity 
Free Printable: How to Fold Clothes Like Marie Kondo from ModernCastle 

This was a fun activity to put together! I simply used my printer set at "Fit to Page" to make the printable larger. Than I used only the pants and jeans part of the printable, since pants are one of the easier items to fold using the KonMari Method. I used children's leggings and jeans to fit in a basket I had.

Free Cleaning and Tidying Printables

Montessori-Inspired Cleaning and Tidying Pack
  
Montessori-Inspired Cleaning and Tidying Pack for DIY Cards and Counters, Number or Letter Matching, Number or Letter Basket, Bead Bar Work, Hands-on Math Operations, Number or Letter Salt/Sand Writing Tray, Letter Tracing, DIY Movable Alphabet, and Creative Writing (subscriber freebie, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password – or check your inbox if you’re already a subscriber)

For more free printables for this unit, go to my post at Living Montessori Now with free cleaning and tidying printables

More Cleaning and Tidying Resources


If you'd like to focus on manners with children, please check out my eBook Montessori at Home or School: How to Teach Grace and Courtesy! It's written for anyone who'd like to feel comfortable teaching manners to children ages 2-12.

Happy cleaning and tidying!

Deb - Siganture
Deb Chitwood
Deb Chitwood is a certified Montessori teacher with a master’s degree in Early Childhood Studies from Sheffield Hallam University in Sheffield, England. Deb taught in Montessori schools in Iowa and Arizona before becoming owner/director/teacher of her own Montessori school in South Dakota. Later, she homeschooled her two children through high school. Deb is now a Montessori writer who lives in San Diego with her husband of 43 years (and lives in the city where her kids, kids-in-law, and grandkids live). She blogs at Living Montessori Now.


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Friday, March 22, 2019

Reading and Dancing from A to Z!

March, 2019

Greetings. and Happy Spring!

One of my favorite ways to get children up and moving is to read a story, and then use ideas from the story as movement prompts.  Here are some of the benefits children can gain from a Read and Dance activity:


  • Comprehension
  • Sequencing
  • Identifying with and understanding different characters in the story
  • Exploring and learning about the setting
  • Vocabulary acquisition
  • Recognition of rhyme and rhythm 
  • Alphabet knowledge/Letter recognition
  • Fun and lively physical activity
  • Social-Emotional Learning (SEL):  Group cooperation; creativity; problem solving; listening to, understanding and responding to instructions; self-expression; body awareness

Reading a story , , ,





Dancing the story!
I love to inspire young children to be active and to learn by exploring, playing, dancing, and moving in many differentI ways.  in this blog post, I am introducing From A to Z with Energy!, my new picture book, published by Free Spirit Publishing.

The book, geared toward children ages 3 to 6, along with parents, teachers, librarians, and caregivers, offers ideas for staying active while learning and reading about the alphabet. The book includes guidelines for 10 supplementary movement activities, along with a short summary of some of the many benefits of movement for young children.



Here are some suggestions (these are examples; the ideas are expanded upon in the book) for enjoying From A to Z with Energyas a Read and Dance activity with young children:

Once you have read the story aloud:


  • Read it again and as you read it, ask the children to clap the rhythm of the verse
  • Ask them to sway side-to-side, march, or move freely as they clap.
  • In the book, each letter introduces ideas about being active.  Read each stanza slowly.  Ask the children to imagine they are doing the activities described.  Show the colorful, lively illustrations by Gareth Llewhellin to further stimulate movement ideas.
There are several more playful movement activities to help children explore letter shapes kinesthetically, and ideas for supplementing early writing activities as well.



Making Letter Shapes!


Keep on Dancin',



Connie

www.movingislearning.com


MOVING IS LEARNING!

To order From A to Z with Energy!:Click here


Friday, March 15, 2019

Montessori-Inspired Backyard Bird Activities Using Free Printables

By Deb Chitwood from Living Montessori Now 

Backyard bird activities are so much fun! I couldn't help adding to the wonderful resources that are already available for a study of backyard birds. Today, I'm sharing both backyard bird activities and free backyard bird printables, including my new Montessori-inspired backyard bird pack (subscriber freebie at LivingMontessoriNow.com)! 



You'll find many activities for preschoolers through first graders throughout the year along with presentation ideas in my previous posts at PreK + K Sharing

You'll also find ideas for using free printables to create activity trays here: How to Use Printables to Create Montessori-Inspired Activities

At Living Montessori Now, I have a post with resource links of Free Printables for Montessori Homeschools and Preschools. 

Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links (at no cost to you).

Montessori Shelves with Backyard Bird Themed Activities

Montessori Shelves with Backyard Bird Themed Activities

You’ll find Montessori-inspired backyard bird numbers, letters, and and more (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber) 

I always have related books available throughout a unit. On my top shelf, I have About Birds and The Random House Children's Encyclopedia (wooden cookbook holder). The children's encyclopedia is one we had from when I homeschooled my now-adult children. It's available used very inexpensively, although not everything will obviously be current. 

On the middle shelf, I have Backyard Birds (Peterson's Field Guides for Young Naturalists). These books are all Montessori friendly. I have a book basket beside the shelf with more Montessori-friendly nonfiction books. 

My fiction books about birds (in another part of the room) are a variety of Montessori-friendly books and books that aren't Montessori-style books but are simply fun. You could mix your backyard bird-themed activities among your shelves according to curriculum area. Or you could have a special backyard bird-themed area something like the one pictured. My shelves this month have a mixture of skill levels. Many of the activities can be adapted for a variety of levels. If you’re a homeschooler, just choose the activities that work for your child’s interests and ability levels. If you don’t have room for all the activities you’d like to do, simply rotate them. 

To add interest this month, I'm featuring the Safari Ltd. Backyard Birds TOOB.

About Birds Book with The Birds' Bath Poetry and Robin from Egg to Bird Tray

About Birds Book with The Birds' Bath Poetry and Robin from Egg to Bird Tray

Free Printable: The Birds' Bath By Evaleen Stein (subscriber freebie) from Every Star Is Different

The robin is from the Safari Ltd. Backyard Birds TOOB.

Free Printable: Robin from Egg to Bird from Share and Remember. This is intended as a poster, but I cut it into sequencing cards. 

The craft stick is for the child (or adult) to point at each word in the poem as it's read. You can have objects for each part of the poem, but I just included the robin. As I often do, I placed everything on a Multicraft tray.

Backyard Bird Watching Tray

Backyard Bird Watching Tray 

Free Printable: Bird Watching Record by Tanglewood Hollow at Teachers Pay Teachers 

Free Printable: Bird Counting Sheet from Share it! Science 

In addition to Backyard Birds (Peterson's Field Guides for Young Naturalists), we'll be using National Geographic Kids Bird Guide of North America

The lovely printable from Tanglewood Hollow will be perfect for my toddler grandkids. Below it, I have a free printable with a variety of types of bird pictures to tally.  

If you haven't already purchased the Montessori Spring Mega Bundle at 90% off (only available through this Sunday, March 17), don't miss out! It has beautiful nature journals by Tanglewood Hollow along with over 1300 pages of Montessori printables for spring! ($235 worth of printables for only $20!!!) There are a number of bird printables in it, too! We'll be using one those nature journals for our backyard bird unit, too.

W is for Woodpecker Birdseed Writing Tray

Free Printables: Woodpecker Letters for Letter W Birdseed Writing Tray (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber) 

I first saw the idea of using birdseed for a writing tray at School Time Snippets. I thought it would be fun to use a feather for the writing, but it didn't work as well as a finger. Birdseed is lots of fun to write in, but it needs a fairly thick writing tool. 

For the tray, I used the wooden tray from the Melissa & Doug Lace and Trace Shapes. You can use whatever tray or container work best for you, though. I still had the birdseed from my N is for Nest Birdseed Writing Tray. (I keep previous writing tray materials in bags stored in drawers in my garage so that I can reuse them.) 

The woodpecker is from the Safari Ltd. Backyard Birds TOOB. If you would like help with introducing phonetic sounds, introducing objects with sounds, or beginning phonics in general, check out my DIY Beginning Montessori Phonics with Preschoolers.

IR, ER, and OW Phonogram Cards and Booklets

Bird and Warbler Phonogram Cards and Booklets 
These are the materials you can see on the right side of my middle shelf. I’ll  add the “ow" yellow warbler phonogram work to the shelf in a week or so. They all have the same photograph, showing that it can be called a bird, a warbler, or a yellow warbler. To limit the number of phonograms, I didn't include ar, although you could still focus on it. 

Free Printable: Ir Sounds Picture and Letter Cards from MontessoriSoul 

Free Printable: Er Sounds Picture and Letter Cards from MontessoriSoul 

Free Printable: Alternative Pronunciation of "ow" Word Building from MontessoriSoul 

The yellow warbler is from the Safari Ltd. Backyard Birds TOOB. These activities are very simple to prepare. I simply print out the materials and make them into little booklets. 

I have a post and video on how to introduce words starting with phonograms, even with very young children.

Hummingbird Tray for Backyard Birds Unit

Hummingbird Tray for Backyard Birds Unit 

I like to feature a bird that's very common in our own backyard. For us, that's the hummingbird. I even found two hummingbirds living in our vertical garden! They flew away during watering. 

Free Printable: Printable Hummingbirds Poster from Project FeederWatch (Be sure to download their other beautiful feeder birds poster, too!) 

Free Printable: Hummingbird Dot to Dot from Super Coloring (This goes to 81, so it's great math practice for older preschoolers and kindergarteners.) 

Free Printable: Animal Adaptation: Birds and Beaks by Montessori Print Shop at Teachers Pay Teachers While the Montessori Print Shop materials have a variety of birds and beaks, I just cut out the hummingbird as my featured bird.

Cardinal and Sunflower Seed Subtraction Activity

Free Printable: Cardinal Numbers 1-10 (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber) 

Free Printable: 1-10 Spinner (part of my subscriber freebie pack, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password … or check the bottom of your latest newsletter if you’re already a subscriber)

I used 10 Sunflower Seeds (taken from the birdseed for the writing tray), the cardinal from the Safari Ltd. Backyard Birds TOOB. and a Montessori Services basket. This is a simple but fun way to work on subtraction skills. 

 Cardinal and Sunflower Seed Subtraction Layout 
The activity starts with 10 sunflower seeds. Then the child spins the spinner to see how many sunflower seeds the cardinal eats. After taking away that number of sunflower seeds, the child completes the equation.Cardinal and Sunflower Seed Subtraction Activity

Birdseed Sensory Bin with Backyard Bird Figures and Types of Backyard Bird Cards

Free Printable: Safari TOOB Backyard Birds Matching Cards from The Pinay Homeschooler 

Use whatever type of sensory bin you'd like. Because my toddler grandchildren can't have access to small objects unless they're watched continuously, I keep this sensory bin in a Glasslock container. It has all the birds from the Safari Ltd. Backyard Birds TOOB. 

It was so sweet to watch my 5-year-old granddaughter, Zoey, showing this activity to her 15-month-old sister, Sophia. Sophia would feel the birdseed and find a bird in the sensory bin. Then Zoey would place the bird on its matching card and tell Sophia the bird's name. 

There are a variety of free matching cards for the Safari Ltd. Backyard Birds TOOB, so just choose the one that works for you (see list below). I like this one for toddlers because it has an actual photograph of the Safari Ltd. bird figures. Normally, you wouldn't use the words for toddlers, but I like having the words on them for Zoey. If you're a homeschooler, just find the level that's right for your child or children.



Montessori-Inspired Backyard Bird Pack


Montessori-Inspired Backyard Bird Pack for DIY Cards and Counters, Number or Letter Matching, Number or Letter Basket, Bead Bar Work, Hands-on Math Operations, Number or Letter Salt/Sand Writing Tray, Letter Tracing, DIY Movable Alphabet, and Creative Writing (subscriber freebie, so just sign up for my email to get the link and password – or check your inbox if you’re already a subscriber)

More Bird Activities and Resources

HELPFUL ANIMAL CLASSIFICATION POSTS

For more free printables for this unit, go to my post at Living Montessori Now with free backyard bird printables

If you'd like to focus on manners with children, please check out my eBook Montessori at Home or School: How to Teach Grace and Courtesy! It's written for anyone who'd like to feel comfortable teaching manners to children ages 2-12.

Happy bird watching!
 Deb - Siganture
Deb Chitwood
Deb Chitwood is a certified Montessori teacher with a master’s degree in Early Childhood Studies from Sheffield Hallam University in Sheffield, England. Deb taught in Montessori schools in Iowa and Arizona before becoming owner/director/teacher of her own Montessori school in South Dakota. Later, she homeschooled her two children through high school. Deb is now a Montessori writer who lives in San Diego with her husband of 43 years (and lives in the city where her kids, kids-in-law, and grandkids live). She blogs at Living Montessori Now.

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