The Work Plan

Monday, October 31, 2011

A Visual Aid For The Visual Learners

Most of the children here must be able to see it before they can totally understand what it is before I can present new concepts. In an effort to accomodate their learning styles I put together a bullentin board showing the parts of the pumpkin. Yes we are just begining to delve into learning themes and I am so excited that these children want to learn, and are focused long enough to grasp the concepts. Nope I won't be talking to myself:)  I used the Parts of the Pumpkin cards and The Parts of the Pumpkin book as my guide, because they are going to be works avaliable on the shelves that we will be using in our study, they all were downloaded from Montessori Print Shop.

           Some of the cards that are included in the work The Parts of The Pumpkin

                             Parts of The Pumkpkin booklet

                                            An example of a page inside the booklet

I have been able to really learn a lot about the group of children that I have now, it has allowed me to be able to set up works that they are very successful at doing independently.

Sunday, October 30, 2011

Our Week In Photos: Montessori Monday

Another successful week!  We are getting to all of our lessons independently, and the children are very excited by having more "challenging" work. Here are photos of the children working.

Coloring the continents according to the colors on ths Montessori World Map Puzzle. This work has helped all of them name and locate all of the seven continents! I have one more final project I want to introduce to them before we move on to North America, I think they are going to love it , they will use a pumpkin.

    Building a pattern to match the pattern using legos.

Playing a game of "knock,knock whose there"?  These children actually matched up perfectly with skills. One knows the sounds the other dosen't.

 Lil showing me she matched the number cards to the correct Number Rods.

              Working with the sand writing tray.

 Wet pouring with colored water. This was definetly her favorite activity of the week.

 This is work that I first saw on the blog The Education Of Ours has been a total must do for all children. They love tracing the leave shape from the Botany Cabinet, pin punching the shape out, and then gluing the shape to a piece of paper. Thank you Jessie for sharing this work with your readers.


                                                 Collaging the Letter Aa.

 Using a glue stick, and scissors to practice one to one correspondence .

To see other children doing activities inspired by the Montessori Method please visit One Hook Wonder and Living Montessori Now  for Montessori Monday.


Friday, October 28, 2011

The Pumpkin Patch

Yesterday we had a field trip to the Cider Mill/Pumpkin Patch. It was chilly but loads of fun.

When we first arrived we were greeted by someone who explained how the cider mill worked. It smelled so good in this place!!

 The children heard the story of Johnny Appleseed. The lady also shared how apples were picked with the apple basket pictured below.


Next it was time for the wagon ride! We saw a lot of beautiful and cool things along the way.

Finally we arrived at the Pumpkin Patch, all of the children got to pick their own pumpkin to take home. The rule was if you can carry it, you can have it.     

The field  trip was 45 minutes away so I decided we should have our lunch there. They enjoyed every bit of this field trip, and they loved drinking their apple cider out of their cute apple cups.


Wednesday, October 26, 2011

For The Record

I am currently slowly but surely going through the assessment and accreditation process for this Group Daycare that I am loving operating in my home everyday. One of the standards that should in place is portfolio work of each child. A portofolio in a brief definition is work that the child has done in a chronological order so that you can use it to measure growth of the child. I have struggled with different ways of getting this done. So much of the childrens' work that they do they want to take home, and often times I forget to copy it before they leave for the day. Over the weekend I found a new blog Mrs.Wills Kindergarten. On her blog she talks about doing Math Journals with the children. I thought it was interesting, but I first was concerned with how developmentally appropiate it was at the preschool age. My first thought was you can't teach concepts by first presenting it in a worksheet!! After much research I finally think I have a basic understanding of math journaling. I decided to give it a try with using one of Mrs.Wills free math journal prompts avaliable on the site Teachers pay Teachers. I brainstormed a bit, I included the metal insets in the presentation of the lesson that the child was already familiar with, and it worked out to be a  fun activity for Andrew(4yrs old).

Andrew and others thought this was a very good work to do. Again they asked me if they could take it home :) Yes I do know this is actually language work. I am really stuck on this, maybe I am looking too deep into the whole thing. Anyone have any suggestions for me? I would really, really appreciate!!!

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Dare I Say Normalized?

Yes, we are very close to being a normalized class. The kids are busy,busy,busy. They are completing works as soon as they are avaliable. Next week I will be officially guiding through created lessons for each child. I am working on saving money to be able to become a trained Montessori Guide!  The children deserve the very best!  I have much respect for those who have gone through the training and the certification to become a trained Montessorian. Up to now I have managed to read through some amazing books, follow Montessori blogs that are just incredible, and invest in some montessori materials. All of this has helped me to be able to offer montessori activities, but honestly I have been doing this with just a whole lot of faith, that something is better than nothing. My heart and soul are so involved in the Montessori Method I can see a long future, if God is willing in offering this concept to all children that I may be blessed to work with. The best resource I have had is actually the beautiful children that I care for everyday. If I forgot to put a control of error on a work, I quickly was reminded by the child by observing them while working. If the activity really didn't have an direct aim, well it was left untouched by the children. I can go on and on but the reality of it all  is The Prepared Enviroment here has only been achieved with the help of the children. Normalization has begun and now folks, they are ready to learn the parts of the apple, why leaves change colors, where are we in the world, is that a lake or a pond, and most importanly " I can do this by myself".  So heads up we are late according to others, but right on time for us. Next week we will begin our Apple/Pumpkin unit and I am so excited about this. These kids are ready to really absorb and understand concepts, not just for memory, but for food for their brain. Watch out world because these children have the "Montessori Bug"

Here are some pictures of the children working this past week. This week I was only able to take pictures of the kids two days.

                         The Name Tray a total success with the children!

                                      Completing the work cycle.

 Learning the names of the continents. Colored in the continents according to the Montessori Continent Map Puzzle.

                                                  Number collage work

                   Pin punching the shape of a leaf from the Botany Cabinet.

                                       Using tweezers to transfer pom poms

 Writing the number one with drawing compass in the serious sandbox.

 I would like to thank the following blogs that gave me the inspiration and guidance to go ahead and start doing montessori activities with the children, Leptir, the moveable alphabet, One Hook Wonder, and My Montessori Journey. I owe you ladies big hugs, I stalked your blogs for a long time before I started even blogging myself. My readers I owe you hugs and kisses also for all the sweet and encouraging comments you leave on this blog. What a difference you made in my day when it wasn't going the way I planned to read such loving thoughtful comments. Thank you to Jojoebi the author of The Montessori Goldmine who put The Work Plan in the spotlight several round ups and helped our fellowship to grow. If I failed to mention you just know I mean thank you when I used your ideas(linkedback), Its truly is a pleasure to know that I can visit your blogs and become busy with your inspirations. Lastly to the parents of the children that I care for, what a loving load of blessings you bring inside my home everyday, thank you for listening and trusting all my crazy ideas.
I am linking this post to Montessori  Monday where you can find loads of activities done by children inspired by the Montessori Method hosted by One Hook Wonder and Living Montessori Now. Another thank you to these two ladies who connect me with others that used the montessori method and send loads of traffic to our little blog every week.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Another Reason Why I Love Montessori

During the month of September we practiced a number of practical life skills that can't be shelved. Like how to ask for a lesson, how to wait while I am speaking to someone else, etc. One of the key presentations that the children was presented to was how to ask if you can watch another friend while they were working. They have done great with grasping this concept, and it has done wonders for the childrens' respect level that they have for each other. The children can accept hearing "No, not right now", this is  a huge step in their developmental stages. It also has helped my job tremendously in regards to guiding a prepared,peaceful enviroment, also children are becoming interested in many works that they see their friends working with.

Here is a photo of Andrew observing Ken while she was working on an activity. The first words that Andrew spoke before he sat down was "Can I watch" . When Ken was putting her work away he finally asked the question he had been waiting to ask, "you think you can show me that". I just love it!!


Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Learning The Letters Of Our Names

After a month of finding our rhythm and enjoying the outside mostly. The children are ready for some lessons on learning their names.

The first activity I put together has the childs' name with a picture of the child next to it. Below are boxes that help the child to place the letters of their name in order. They use the moveable alphabet to do this activity.

   This activity the child also uses the name cards and makes a name bracelet.

On the back of each card I added a name label with their names written in all capital letters. Unfortunately I didn't notice the alphabet beads were in all capital letters when I purchased them. No harm, no foul now they are not only learning the names of the letters in their names but also matching capital letters to the lowercase letters that they are learning.


Sunday, October 16, 2011

I Can't Keep Up With Them:) Montessori Monday

For real!! I am steps behind this crew.It is fun to see them having fun and learning. I remember just this time last year these little people couldn't stay out of the Practical Life area for nothing. It paid off! Big time. The kids are interested in everything. Giving individual lessons are not happening, Why?  because anytime I ask one person if they would like a lesson, everyone comes along to see the presentation:) One day last week for the very first time ever I got a chance to sit down for an hour. I finally got a chance to really observe, it was fascinating:) I definetly got busy over the weekend and put out a few works. I will have to do another post on that, for now I have some pics of the children working.

                                                    Sorting beads

                                             Measuring pumpkins and gourds

                                                Spooning autumn shaped beads

Sandpaper letters. I just noticed that order spells a word:) I wonder if she knows that. Can't wait until tomorrow!!

                                                 Metal insets admiration

                                                    Wet pouring

                                                         Knobless cylinders

                                                    Ordering apples using the number line

                                                Matching fabrics by sight and touch

                                                Working with landform tray.

                                                         Painting a pumpkin

                           Autumn language cards from Montessori Print Shop

I am looking forward to another fun busy week. To see other children doing activities inspired by the Montessori Method please visit One Hook Wonder and Living Montessori Now for Montessori Monday.