Home Crochet baby clothesMake Montessori material yourself - ideas for toys and exercises

Make Montessori material yourself - ideas for toys and exercises

  • stages of development
  • Montessori principles
  • Material and design
  • Bastelanleitungen
    • 1. Sort
    • 2. Plug
    • 3. Discover
    • 4. Color theory
    • 5. Calculating
    • 6. Geometry
    • 7. Biology

Since I have children myself, I think about my own childhood a lot more and would like to pass on to them, of course, everything that I loved too. I want to do "everything right" and read a lot, browse forums, do handicrafts and works. Today I would like to introduce you to the topic of Montessori, give you some craft instructions, how you can make different materials yourself and, of course, present appropriate exercises. Occasionally I will use the word toy.

First, a rough overview of Maria Montessori and her main messages. Afterwards, I introduce some projects and give suggestions for dealing with them. Then follow some projects that I would like to implement.

Difficulty level 1/5
(also suitable for beginners)

Material costs 1/5
(from EUR 0, - from the remainder utilization)

Time 1-3 / 5
(almost every toy can be created very quickly and easily)

stages of development

It has been more than 100 years since Maria Montessori (hereinafter "MM") realized that the very first three years of life are the most important years of education in a person's life, which at the time was not considered as such at all.

Basically, it divided the development into three phases:

  • 0-6 years as the first stage of childhood (skills and personality develop)
    Here, the years 0-3 have the most formative time, which is considered by them to be immutable; the integrity of other individuals should be consistently taught and solidified in these years (do not hurt anyone, courtesy, etc.)
  • 6-12 years as a second stage of childhood (the "stable" phase)
  • 12-18 years as adolescence (physical and psychological changes) take a place in society, take care of oneself and strengthen self-confidence, take responsibility in the form of a "farm"

There is still a fourth phase, which unfortunately often goes unmentioned: the maturity of 18-24 years.

In these phases, time and again periods occur when children are particularly receptive to specific topics, so they can easily focus and focus on them. Supported by exercises according to Montessori, they learn particularly effectively during this time. This results in deep insights, which has a very positive effect on the child in its entirety. In order to identify such periods of time and to create concentration incentives, MM developed special materials for exercises and explored the environment the children needed to get into the mood more often and more easily.

Children WANT to WORLDLY CLASS THE WORLD! They want to attack everything, smell it, taste it.

MM felt that children want to learn from themselves and integrate themselves into society, and that rewards and punishments are a hindrance. However, learning freely did not mean a laissez-faire style to them, quite the contrary: every child was closely watched and given loving supportive developmental support, according to their ideas of "Cosmic Education."

This concept focuses on the 3-12 year olds. The time of 0-3 years should prepare for it. Here it is, roughly outlined, to the capture of the large connections. In the years before, the focus has been on experiencing all senses, on the refinement of gross and fine motor skills, on grasping various mathematical concepts (mating, structures, repetitions, etc.), on recognizing similarities and differences, and much more. The materials are adapted to the level of development of the child. For example, children in the lower stages of development can sort objects by color, and later by size and other similarities, later you can name them and assign them correctly.

The different stages of development and how to assign children is described in many books. I personally like the work under the guidance of the book "Praxisbuch Cosmische Erziehung. Learning with interest. "By Thomas Helmle and Petra Wöbcke-Helmle. (Publisher Herder GmbH, Freiburg im Breisgau 2016, ISBN 978-3-451-37505-7) particularly. Both the assignment to the appropriate level and the preparation of the individual topics are explained easily understandable and can therefore be easily implemented. The focus of this book is geography and geology:

"The areas of mathematics, language (s), sports, music and art are discussed in detail in other volumes of this book series. That's why we only occasionally strip them in their networks. On the other hand, we would like to illustrate the fields of knowledge geography and geology in more detail. [...] Even Maria and Mario Montessori had chosen geography as the starting point of the Cosmic Education. "

Montessori principles

Help me do it myself.

Do not do it for me, I can and will do it on my own, have patience to understand my ways, they may be closer, maybe I need more time because I want to make several attempts also mistakes too, because from them I can learn.)

Not the child should adapt to the environment, but we adults should adapt the environment to the child.

Self-employment leads to independence.

Material and design

The more aesthetically the material, the greater the interest of the children: If the work equipment is beautifully colored, once rough - once smooth - once riffled - once grained, lighter or heavier, odorless or fragrant, making it twice as much fun!

In addition, the "toy" should be designed as simple as possible, so always focus on a specific learning objective. According to this presentation, the number of development materials in a room should also be limited in order to make it easier for the children to concentrate.

The material should give a first insight and a good overview of various topics to which the children can later accumulate more in-depth knowledge. For example, an annual cycle with the four seasons is launched. This gives a rough overview of the entire year. In the next step, each quarter of it can be further subdivided with example images of the plants that are in bloom at this time, the festivals that are cyclically committed, etc. Later, the month names follow. The rule is that only one overview material is selected for each topic. Put simply, if there is an annual cycle, you should not use an additional year chain (linear representation).


... for toys after Montessori and exercises

1. Sort

Get small bowls in different colors (for example, when sweden furniture) and collect in the household a lot of small items and toys in the appropriate colors together. Alternatively, you can also use small colorful craft pompoms. An improvement would be to sort the child with tweezers. Other variations: Take away the bowls and let the child sort the pompoms by size. Have the child create the colors in different sequences - like the rainbow (red, orange, yellow, etc.). On index cards or small boxes (or laminated paper) write down the colors in uppercase and lowercase letters and let them be assigned.

2. Plug

Drill a hole on the underside of a chip box with scissors. Through this hole pompoms in different sizes and colors, colorful cloths and much more can be put into the can. To remove, simply open the plastic lid on the top. The box can be decorated according to taste (also together with the children).

3. Discover

Collect empty plastic bottles, remove labels and fill with water and other small items. For safety reasons, glue the lid inside with the hot glue gun. You can cover entire thematic series, such as a series of bottles, each of which is filled with objects in a different color. A series of different flower petals (but they do not last long). A series of different glittering objects, etc. Examples of filling material: cut straws into 1 cm pieces, glitter powder, waterbeads, strewnko such as table confetti, etc. Variation: The dry variant. Fill various objects in clear plastic bottles and seal them. Here larger bottles can be used. Fill in thematically objects: everything green, Christmas things, bath fun etc.

4. Color theory

Visit the color department at your next hardware store visit! There are always color charts. Take some in the main colors with nuances and make a color book out of them. Write the colors in uppercase and lowercase letters on it. So the children learn that each color can have many "faces" (for example, green: dark green, teal, light green, mint, etc.).

5. Calculating

A great toy for mathematical exercises are the calculating beads. Crafting instructions can not be found because they are so easy to make. You only need wooden or plastic beads (also in different colors), some craft wire and pliers. You can make toys with 1 to 10 pearls. With this material, the child can "grasp" mathematics. 2 + 3 = 5 A piece with two pearls is placed, next to it a piece with three pearls and next to it another piece with five pearls. 10 1er result in 1 10er, 2 5er also.

6. Geometry

The Geoboard or Geoboard is also a great Montessori toy that combines geometry and math. You need a square piece of wood in which you can hammer in nails (with rounded heads) at regular intervals, creating a grid. With slightly wider, colorful rubber bands, the child can now span the nails and form different shapes such as triangles, rectangles, squares, and so on. By overlapping different forms he can also be taught the set theory, for example. There are also many crafting tutorials on the Internet for learning how to read and write. For example, you can create cards on which you first draw points (the grid of the board) and then draw down different letters that the child can replicate with the rubber rings on the board. Alternatively, you can also create different shape books with different exercises that you stitch together and swap for interest.

7. Biology

My miniman is currently very interested in death and everything that goes with it. He finds skeletons particularly exciting. For this project you need a dark sheet of colored paper on which you paint a skull using a white pencil or a chalk pen. Cut different cotton swabs in different lengths and let the child put on a skeleton.

As you can see, although almost every material has a focal point, many parts overlap. Especially the "networking" makes this kind of toy so interesting and versatile. The exercises can be tailored to each child and its current state of development and it can be found with a little research countless craft manuals that are easy to implement. If you want to get deeper into the material of Montessori to create more elaborate toys yourself, I suggest you to get exercise books.

Further ideas

The rainbow seesaw

A big wish of mine has long been the rainbow seesaw. Actually, the creation is not witchcraft. You only need a few boards and two blanks. What always stops me are the colors. Safe colors for children are very expensive, but in colorful the exercises are just twice as much fun.

The annual cycle

As already described above, this is a project with many possibilities and variations, ie a major project. For this I would like to think in advance, what exactly I would like to install. At the moment I have so many ideas that I can not decide yet. Most likely, it will probably be a four-part base in circular form, on which then various items can be placed, which I would like to laminate.

The twisted pirate

Sew keyring / lanyard - made of fabric / felt - instructions
Connecting and setting the motion detector - instructions