Resources for Primary Families

A Note from the Primary Staff:
Dear Primary parents,
A Montessori classroom is a unique learning environment. Raintree primary teachers certainly do not expect you to replicate what happens in school over the next couple of weeks, but we recognize that all of you have an interest in finding meaningful ways for your child to spend this time. We have compiled a list of activities, academic ideas, games, exercises, recipes and helpful hints. We hope you all stay healthy and patient. Please reach out should you need our support.
Kindly,
The Raintree Montessori primary staff
Ann, Callie, Emma E, Emma K,  Jennifer, Laura, Lisa, Marcia, Xiling


One of the reasons a Montessori classroom functions as it does, is because we explain the expectations to children ahead of time, in a neutral moment, rather than correcting when something doesn’t go so great. It would be worthwhile to have a conversation with your child about how the next couple of weeks are going to be handled within your home. There can be a balance of fun and focus!

We recommend setting up a structure that works for your family, is appropriate for your child’s age and ability and allows you the flexibility to work from home if need be. All of these ideas will be familiar to your child.

We suggest:

  • set up a space that is designated as a working environment for your child
  • implement a routine for the day, children thrive on structure
  • discuss the importance of quiet, indoor voices
  • discuss the importance of working independently some of the time
  • explain to your child what you would like them to do if you are on a phone call or in the middle of a work task (role play how to get your attention)

Here is an example of a daily schedule that you could modify for your particular needs:

  • 7:00-9:00 wake up, eat breakfast, get dressed, chores
  • 9:00-11:00 work time (this might include academics, workbooks, drawing, math activities, handwriting practice) *see the list
  • 11:00-1:00 lunch and downtime (reading, looking at books independently, resting, physical activity)
  • 1:00-3:00 nap time or work time (this might include building with Legos, puzzles, academic activities) *see the list
  • 3:00-5:30 play time indoors or outdoors, limited screen time with educational apps or computer games

Here is a list of activities your child might enjoy and learn from over the next couple of weeks. Some can be done independently, some require adult assistance and others are adult directed. They are categorized by the four areas of a Montessori primary classroom:

PRACTICAL LIFE:

  • setting and clearing the table
  • helping to load and unload the dishwasher
  • moving laundry from the washer to the dryer
  • folding laundry
  • putting laundry/clothing away
  • making beds
  • picking up toys
  • sweeping, dusting, polishing
  • washing vegetables and fruit
  • preparing simple foods like sandwiches, tearing lettuce for salads, cutting fruits and vegetables with a safe knife
  • transfer activities like pouring, spooning, tonging with dried beans or water
  • filling a bucket with water and squeezing out a sponge

SENSORIAL:

  • sort household objects or toys by shape, size or color
  • take a walk through your home or neighborhood and look for specific shapes or colors
  • make comparisons: find things that are rough, smooth, big, small, heavy, light, wide, thin
  • a mystery bag where a child tries to identify  familiar objects using only the sense of touch and feel
  • taste and group foods that are sweet, spicy, salty, bitter or sour, etc.
  • smell and group scents that are floral, spicy, clean, yucky, etc.

MATH:

  • count everything and anything
  • identify what numbers look like
  • practice writing numbers with chalk, pencil, or shaving cream in the tub or shower
  • introduce concepts of addition and subtraction by putting together groups of objects or taking some away
  • older children can memorize math facts from all four operations with flash cards
  • math workbooks (see links below)

LANGUAGE:

  • read aloud and ask questions for comprehension
  • silent reading where your child “reads” or looks at books independently
  • “sound of the day”: pick a sound like “p” and find objects indoors or outdoors that begin, end or internally have that sound
  • “word of the day I”: choose a word of the day and make a noise every time its used
  • “word of the day II”: choose a word of the day and identify every time the word is found in a book, on a  food package, etc.
  • “word of the day III”: choose a word of the day and have your child look through books to find the word (incorporate math and
  • make tally marks recording when it is found, more math: which word is used more frequently the or is
  • “sight word of the day”: have a different  sight word on the kitchen counter each morning, children can spell it out loud, write it, look for it, use it in a sentence all day long
  • sight word flashcards
  • labeling I: either an adult or older child writes a single letter on a small piece of paper and the child finds objects in the home that begin with the sound and tapes the label to the object
  • labeling II: either an adult or older child writes a label for a household object and then tapes it to the object
  • labeling III: either an adult or an older child writes labels for a collection of objects, like body parts, items in the kitchen, shapes
  • ability appropriate handwriting practice in chalk, on paper, in shaving cream in the bathtub
    handwriting workbooks (see links below.)
  • spelling test: dictate a list of words and have your child spell them out loud or in written form. If written, give your child the list and a pen to check their own work.

There are many art activities and geography lessons that can be done at home. Look up countries and their flags online.  Have your child draw and recreate the flags they like. Learn about animals and plants from different countries. Spin the globe and make a food the country where your finger lands. Learn about landmarks from around the world. Art activities can be as endless and messy as you allow them to be. 😉

*Homemade Playdough*
1 c. white flour
½ cup of salt
2 tsp. cream of tartar
2 tsp. vegetable oil
1 c. water w a few drops of food coloring
Mix dry ingredients. Mix in wet ingredients.
Stir together over low heat until it forms a ball.
Store in a sealed container.


Resources:
Untitled

Montessori-inspired indoor activities: https://www.mother.ly/amp/montessori-inspired-indoor-activities-2644299984

Podcasts:

TV programs: 

  • The Best of Mister Rogers’ Neighborhood season 1-7 are on Amazon Prime
  • PBS kids show: https://pbskids.org/everything/
  • Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (CBC): The Nature of things: https://www.youtube.com/channel/UCdEipOt83E-lRf5ORTfDJiA/videos
  • Tumble Leaf
  • Brainchild
  • Annedroids
  • Ask the Storybots
  • Wild Kratts
  • Bill Nye the Science Guy
  • The Who Was Show
  • The Mars Generation
  • Planet Earth
  • Planet Earth II
  • Dino Hunt
  • Civilization
  • Animal Encyclopedia
  • Popular Mechanics for Kids
  • Great Greek Myths
  • Magic School Bus
  • If I Were an Animal
  • The Universe

Online Learning:

Music:

  • We sing songs every day at school. You can teach songs, too, by finding music from Raffi, Laurie Berkner, Sesame Street, Elizabeth Mitchel to name a few.
  • Story time resources: Learn fingerplays from Jbrarry https://www.youtube.com/user/Jbrary/videos

Age Appropriate APPS:

  • Lite versions are generally free, others have a fee to access full version.
  • Montessori Preschool
  • Montessori: Add and Subtract
  • Cursive Writing-
  • Cursive Words-Kids World Cultures
  • Cursive Writing Wizard Starter
  • ABC Magic Phonics
  • Maps of All Countries-Geo Quiz

Age Appropriate Workbooks and Flash Cards on Amazon:

There is also a facebook group 3-6 Montessori at Home During School Closure: Parent Support that may be valuable.

Link to document in pdf format