Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Montessori at Home: Not as Pricey as You May Think!

            Even though I still have much to learn about Montessori, there seems to be a common misconception I have seen so far: You need to buy a lot of expensive toys, furniture, supplies, etc. Now, if you are trying to do a set up in the strictest sense, then yes, you are probably going to spend a small fortune on child sized toilets, chairs, tables, stools, etc. However, if you are incorporating Montessori principles more moderately like most parents seem to, there is no need to spend an exorbitant amount of money on toys and furniture. While it is always nice to have some special purchased toys, you can find SO many fun projects to do with your children or toys/learning tools to make for them on the Internet. (I’ll list a few of the blogs I have found that have some great ideas if you’re interested below.)
            Contrary to popular belief and what a lot of major toy companies would have you believe, your children don’t need a bunch of electronic gadgets and gizmos that take all of the imagination out of playing. Don’t get me wrong: I’m not telling you to throw out all of your electronic toys. What I’m really trying to say is that you might be surprised at how entertaining and how much a child can learn from non-toy items. For example:
            I’ve been racking my brain lately trying to think of small activities to bring with us to work that will still be fun and educational for Myka. The little boy I watch has plenty of toys, but Myka has been getting bored easily with them lately because, well, they’re baby toys and she’s very inquisitive. (Yes, I realize she’s still a “baby”, but she’s bored with rattles and never really cared for teethers…at all…I still try to get her to use them when I can tell her teeth are bothering her. Nope. Wants nothing to do with them.)
            So, yesterday I happened to use up a paper towel roll, but decided not to throw it away. Surely I could find something to do with it! When Myka woke up from her nap, I used the tube to:
-blow through it on her face (She thinks it’s funny when I do short, quick puffs on her head. Lol)
-make funny noises
-look through it (like a telescope)
-put on my nose (like Pinocchio lol)

            Just doing silly stuff like that with very young kids can introduce them to how different sounds are made and, hopefully, how to use their imagination and that it’s OK to use it! (Although I’m pretty sure Myka’s still too young for understanding imagination concepts. I don’t think kids start pretending until 2 or 3 years of age?) If you have older kids (Well, older than Myka. I’m talking like 4ish.) you could also use PT tubes to make a kaleidoscope or a really big kazoo. (Does anyone else remember making those with wax paper and a rubber band?)
            Just use YOUR imagination and I’m sure you will be able to come up with fun things to do with objects around the house. Again, I’m terrible about remembering sources, but like I read on another blog page recently, “Remember: The most important thing is you!” (In regards to playing with your child(ren).)

Helpful websites (in no particular order)

1 comment:

  1. I know it's possible to do it on a budget, but those colorful toys are just so tempting! I need to make more time for hands on time with the kids, though. They are both under 5, so prime time for learning!