A quick note before we get started: Last week I got asked what age these activities are meant for. To be honest, I’m not sure. I make these works (Montessori term for each activity) for my son, and sometimes, I’m spot on and he loves them and gets them straight away. Other times, he’s not interested or they are too advanced for him.
I try to rethink my approach then to make it more appropriate or save it for another time. It’s been working so far, and I’ve noticed a huge improvement in his interest in our tot school activities, as well as his development, especially his speech.
Throughout this post, I’m going to try to explain how we approach each work to make it appropriate for my son who is 22 months old. Many can be adapted for older kids or younger ones, and I will also explain how as we go. Remember, each child is different and develops differently so what works for my son, may not be appropriate for another 22 month old!
Psst! Don’t forget to read through this post to grab your own free construction printables!
Arts and crafts
The way we do this activity is that I point to each item, explain what it is and why it’s different. For older children, you could present these cards with a manipulative (such as a black bean), and ask the child to put the bean on the photo that is different for each card.
Let’s go on a car hunt
I took the Toddler out on a hunt for cars/vehicles. We live in a rural-ish area in a village in the Netherlands. What this means is that we live next to several farms, and the roads tend to be fairly busy to traffic, especially all sorts of farm vehicles, but also a lot of different cars and motorcycles. Of course, let’s not forget all of the people that travel by bicycle in the traditional style!
When I told the Toddler that we were going outside to search for tractors, let me tell you – there were squeals of delight, laughter, and smiles. He ran to get his shoes and mine so that we could leave immediately in search of the promised tractors. Luckily, I knew that this company [photo above] tends to have at least one tractor or construction vehicle in the front. First we went there – Woohoo! Mommy’s the best!
Then, we walked around the village and looked at all of the cars, trucks, tractors, etc that passed by. I guess we picked a good time because it was very busy and I had a very happy kiddo. Every time we passed some sort of vehicle, the Toddler shouted ‘Yaaayyyy! AUUUUUTTTTOOO!!’ so I’m pretty sure he enjoyed it. I also got bonus points because we discovered these:
Let’s put the car together!
All of these pieces can be put together to make a car! The Toddler loves taking it apart, but can’t put it back together yet so we worked on that together. Lot’s of fun!
Language and reading
Construction vehicle nomenclature cards
First letter matching work
I plan to make another post next week with more math works, but for now, we focused on sorting. The Toddler can do all of these on his own. I sit with him and demonstrate each activity first, and explain the difference between each item. Before he was able to do these himself, I would simply leave it at the explanation. He wasn’t too interested before, and I didn’t push it. Now, he chooses these works first. Plus, they’re another opportunity to use our homemade tray!