Showing posts with label Montessori ideas. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Montessori ideas. Show all posts

Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Geography box-Montessori style

I have posted a whole ditty about the Montessori Geography box I have been working on. You can read about it over on my main blog:  Homeschooling on a Wing and a Prayer.

Friday, August 30, 2013

Making activity component/ trinket boxes [for Montessori works, hands-on-activities] out of food boxes

So what does one do with all those little pieces or parts that are a must when using Montessori works [aka: a specific activity meant to teach something], or some matching activity or whatever it is you have that will need to be contained?  What can you use that keeps them all nice and tidy and looks good too?

Well, being frugal is always a great way to start. So you search your humble abode, and perhaps even ask friends/family for those particular boxes that once housed delicate chocolates or sugar packs. Then you scrounge thru your various scrapbooking paper, collect glue, scissors, a bowl and a brush and you get busy. And that is exactly what I have done lately.  Whenever we get (usually a gift) those nice quality chocolates, I always save the boxes.  My husband actually found one I tucked away and he had the nerve to pitch it.  I gasped in horror and immediately plucked it from its demise.  Thankfully there wasn't anything in the trash yet so it was safe from grossness, and I must say-he won't make that mistake again. The shocked look from such outlandishness across my dazed face surely left a lasting impression on him. LOL

Anyhoo-the reason I am posting this because there are times folks need a box or something to hold those little goodies. So why pay a lot of cashola for something you can make?  I don't know why you would.  I try my best re-purpose things when I can; this is a fun, creative way to get a few storage boxes that are sturdy and useful for our schooling needs.

Now I do not have a canister of Modge Podge about the house, so I did what any frugal gal would-I made the 'poor man's version' of it using Elmer's Glue and water to thin it.  Worked like a charm!
Figured I would just do a picture tutorial (for those who have never tried such things) and put a wee comment under when necessary.  Hope this helps you out.

The Basics:
Find a piece of scrapbook paper that appeals to you. I recommend using the thinner style. Then figure out there the lid fits best-allowing for enough paper to cover up over the sides and slightly over into the inside edge.
 Cut to the area where the corners meet
-but not too far in as you can always fix as you go.
 Put a nice, but not too heavy layer of glue down on the
 lid then lay down in the center area of your paper.
 Flip over and use one of those handy-dandy Pampered Chef  
scrapers (or a soft edged tool) to get rid of any air bubbles.

 Glue, fold and press out any bubbles, along all sides.

 Trim off any excess and tuck the corners in nicely.  Try not to over do it on the inside because the extra bulk may prevent the lid from going over the bottom.
Let dry thoroughly. I actually did two coats.  
Very smooth and durable.

And there ya go-


Now I have a lovely box to contain language materials.  And hey, if it gets crushed-well I am out like 30 cents.  Not too shabby!  :)

Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Science/Zoology Ideas: cross post from my Hsing on a Wing and a Prayer blog

Just wanted to post this from my other blog, in case you don't go there.  These ideas are nice and the trays and goodies will fit into a workbox.  One could even just put them in a Ziplock if space is an issue.  Enjoy.

We're going to be covering birds and insects and swimming creatures this year for science. I have always enjoyed activities that help reinforce the lessons by using fun little goodies to do so.  Being that I have a Montessori background, and love the Charlotte Mason method-I try to combine the best of both worlds when I can.

image from the Safari Ltd. site

So I found (like why didn't I take a closer look at these before? Really? I am not happy with myself for walking right past these little gems for some time now-OY!) Safari Ltd. Toobs.  These containers hold a nice amount of critters, or people or flowers or well-known landmarks that can easily be tied into most lessons. One can use them for map work, science activities, matching lessons, and more.  So my goal is to collect the Toobs we need for our year. I should have all or at least most of them bought before Oct/Nov.  I am of course, focusing on the immediately needed ones first.  I have already purchased both the backyard birds and the exotic birds sets.  Being that I hate paying full price, and the couponer in me demands this-I gathered up my 40% and 50% coupons for JoAnns to save a few bucks-which I could use b/cuz they were not on sale. JoAnns has them for around $9 something and so I was able to get one for about $5 ish and the other around $6ish.  I will continue to use the coupons until I have all the sets I want :)! 

image from the Safari Ltd. site

Thankfully, on the Safari Ltd. site, you can click the image to see what is included. If you ctrl/prt sc then go to MS Paint (if you have such programs) you can cut/trim it and then save it to put onto MS Word to create a control card for your activity.  I enlarged one kinda big (for youngers to place the actual bird onto) but it kinda fuzzed the wording. So I also shrunk it to a better size (as a control card for my son) that isn't so bad. I also used the MS Word to create name cards as well.  I then printed and laminated for long term use.

I then will put it on the tray (as pictured, but I am going to paint it white) when we get to those chapters in science.  It is just a kinda fun extra thing for my son to do to stave off boredom.  For the younger set-it is a great activity (very Montessori) to help learn the different birds (or whatever critter you want to study). The basic deal is that the student takes the word card and matches it to the right bird. 

I will also be purchasing the N.A. animals and the river ones too.  I need that snapper from the river set to use along the Minn of the Mississippi book (BFB geography). Figured we would have fun occasionally moving the turtle down the great Mississip (with our sense of humor I am sure it'll be interesting) map that he fills in/colors as he goes thru the chapters. And it'll serve as a great replica of what a real one looks like. Mind you-he's already had fun poking at a snapper or two when his dad and him have been out and about on their walks. He knows a snapper and understands just why it is called one. That said, because this is one critter you do not want to handle for real-this is a great option to have! LOL.  Plus, I can pull a lot of those animals from the river set for our history study of the expansion west (in the US) that we're tagging into our Calf. history (by BFB).  Once I get a fun set together for that-I will be sure to post.

The beauty is you can create what you need. 

I also printed off a free coloring page of a snapper to use to teach turtle parts.  He covered that way back when he was in Kindergarten but obviously, it's been a while and why not revisit it?  So I will the laminated pic, some Vis-a-Vis markers and a control card (still need to create) that he can use to remember them. He'll just use different colors for different parts. I will also make an actual turtle control card with the correct areas labeled so he can self-check it.  I will probably do it for the Seagull one I have when we do the book, Seabird.  I have to go thru the Apologia notebooking wkbk I bought to go along with the Zoology 1 I have. If they don't do that-then I will create one. 

This is just a simple idea that can create a fun, integrated 'accessory' for your  student's learning experiences. Think outside the one-dimensional when you are looking for different ways of teaching and you'll be surprised at what you find!

**the Toobs use the correct names for most of their sets, which is good b/cuz I prefer the child learns the right name of an animal. For the younger kids, you can get away with saying "bird" or "flower" but it does help significantly if you label it as it should be-their specific name.  I will also make cards with the Latin names for my son to match up because when we do our nature study notebooks (CM way), we always add that and I want to be sure to provide another opportunity for him to learn them. 

**I am not an associate for these companies-altho I should be LOL. Just wanted to share what we have found to be very useful for our lessons.