If Montessori resonates with your parenting style and for various reasons your child can’t attend a Montessori school, here are some activities/tips I would like to share as my son concluded his first year in a Montessori school:
- Invite your child to take part in household activities. They can fold laundry, swipe the floor, set the table or make the bed. These simple activities will instill a sense of responsibility and make them feel helpful.
- Make a habit in arranging things – simply putting them back where they belong. We put toys away after we’re done playing, fold our pajamas after we get dressed up, and we put our shoes nicely at the door. These simple gestures become habits that potentially will make your home look a little less of a war zone.
- Turn simple, daily walks into exploring adventures. Bugs, dust, worms, leaves, flowers, trucks, etc can be found pretty much everywhere. And they can become so interesting and fun to explore and explain. And when you pass a church and your little one says “look, the Disney castle!”, you pretty much gained a whole lot of giggles.
- Show them how to wash their hands, dress up, eat with a fork…and let them do it for themselves. This takes a lot of patience and they won’t miraculously cut their steak after 2 or 3 demonstrations. But when they get it, autonomy is so empowering and sweet for both of you.
- Organize their play area so that they can have a designated corner to read quietly, to draw, play and unwind. And make it accessible for their little hands to reach.
- If you chose to put them in front of a screen, choose carefully. I wish my son never watched TV, but I gave in for the sake of a few minutes to cook dinner, talk to my husband or take a shower. In our house, we watch Disney movies and short series – “Minuscule” is one of them and it’s pretty awesome.
In the end, you’re probably doing all this with your child and I command you – continue and do some more.
My own trial and error attempts, led me to believe that creating a stable environment at home, where the child feels respected and loved is vital for the little one to develop their personality. And you can always spice things up with drawing, dancing, cutting, glueing, getting dirty, smiling, reading…and just living!
I will leave you with a little visual tour of some of my favourite school memories. The pictures don’t need any captions, they encapsulate pure innocence, exploration and child-like joy.