In today’s post we propose 4 Montessori challenges to do on the beach while you play and relax with your family and friends. Do you know what the best part is? That you don’t have to buy anything to do them. You don’t need highly elaborate objects because there are many ways of working on the fundamentals of the method by simply connecting with our surroundings.
But do you know who Maria Montessori was and why we like her method so much? We’ll tell you!
The Montessori method was created by Maria Montessori who was born in Italy in 1870. Her method drew a lot of attention the world over, making a huge impact internationally that continues to this day more than 100 years on. It’s an educational approach whose main characteristics are:
- Respect for the individual pace of each child
- Freedom of choice (both in choosing the activity and its duration)
- Freedom of movement
- Learning through experience
- Self correction
- Fostering autonomy and independence, both physical and emotional
- Preparation of the adult and of the environment
Would you like to give it a go with us? Let’s begin!
1. Montessori transferring activities
The Montessori transferring activities are among the best known because they prepare you for writing. The beach is the ideal place for doing them. The easiest one consists in transferring big objects from one vessel to another by hand, and these could be anything from stones to snails. If we want to add a little more difficulty, we can transfer sand or water from one glass to another. In fact, this is something you do quite often in a natural and spontaneous way.
Do you know what we are working on with this activity?
- Motor coordination of movements: psychomotor development and autonomy.
- Adaptation to the environment: social development, autonomy and independence.
- Development of will and concentration.
- Preparation of the hands for using objects and precision of the gestures.
- Preparation for eating and writing.
- Developing logical thinking.
- Building self-confidence.
2. The mystery bag
With this activity, we will work on developing the stereognostic sense that consists in recognising an object only by touch. The activity has two parts:
- The first consists in strolling about the beach and collecting different objects of interest that we come across. As we pick them up, we put them in a bag.
- The second part consists in putting a hand in the bag, picking an object and identifying what it is without looking at it.
- By doing this, we are working on language and all that we learn about our environment from the things we find in it.
3. Classification by size
Many of the Montessori materials of the sensorial area are based on classification and ordering by size, such as the pink tower, the knobbed cylinders and brown stairs…
But did you know that we could manufacture our own sensorial materials wherever we may be? For example, we could collect ten stones of different sizes on our island.
What does this activity consist of? We can order them by size, place them one on top of the other, compare them… We can also consider other types of classification such as colour, texture…
5. The sand tray
An incomparable prewriting element. Did you know? Maria Montessori discovered that children were interested in reading and writing earlier in her schools than it was taught in other schools.
She found that with a series of materials and exercises used before a pencil and paper, such as the sand tray, children began to use a finger to draw free forms as well as suggested ones (curved or straight) until they got to letters using a stick as a pencil. Doing this in a tray makes it possible to limit the working space.
We can do the same on the beach by tracing a rectangle in the sand so you can work within its lines. There, you can start to develop your imagination. Cool, isn’t it?