I’m not a Montessorian who insists on a rigid adherence to a specific method. I love preschool education in general. But I think there are many ways Montessori principles and methods can be used to help any parent or teacher.
After my children graduated from homeschool high school, I returned to school to get my master’s degree in Early Childhood Studies from Sheffield Hallam University in Sheffield, England. Most of my master’s work, including my dissertation, incorporated Montessori education in some way. If you’d like to know more about my Montessori journey, please read About Me, How Montessori Can Be a Life Journey, and/or How to set up a Montessori Preschool Classroom at Home (photo).
While many of my blogging friends are Montessori teachers, I also connect with many who use Montessori education at home or want to use some Montessori ideas in preschools and daycare centers that aren’t Montessori schools.
Montessori-Inspired Activity Trays
You can use Montessori principles and methods in any setting. I hope to give you some practical Montessori-inspired ideas and activities to help you do that, whether you’re a parent, a teacher, or both!
Here are a couple of examples:
Many Montessori-inspired activity trays, such as a Montessori-inspired photography tray, work well for preschoolers through early elementary.
Other trays work well for specific holidays and can be stored in a closet (either as a complete tray or as individual parts in baggies or storage boxes ready to be quickly reassembled) for the next holiday. The transferring practice golf balls tray is great for U.S. preschoolers in preparation for a patriotic holiday such as Memorial Day, Independence Day, or our upcoming Veterans Day.Note: in Montessori schools and homeschools, only one tray of a kind is set out, so you don't need to prepare more than one of a specific activity tray. Having one activity of each kind encourages children to take turns. Of course, a child may ask the child using the activity for permission to work together, which also helps teach polite, cooperative behavior. You'll see lots of collaborative learning as well as individual work in a Montessori school or homeschool.