Pouring has a special place in my heart. It was the first activity we ever attempted using the Montessori Method.
My only real experience with Montessori prior was while researching preschools for my son. I could not believe how much it cost! I then met a family whose Mom went back to work so that her daughter could attend a Montessori School. As a young family on a very strict budget, this "elite" method of teaching seemed out of reach. Out of our universe out of reach.
I started reading what I could trying to figure out what the hullabaloo was about. The first book I got from the library was Basic Montessori Learning Activities for Under-Fives by David Gettman.
The book is not an easy read. After a couple days of struggling through the intro I made it to the actual activities. How to introduce pouring. I almost skipped over it. Why pour? Aren't there so many other things we should be doing? Counting. Reading. Getting into college.
Here's what I wrote about our first experience:
The first activity in the book was pouring beans into jugs. Really? That's what all the fuss is about? Pouring beans that I have in my pantry into jars that are overflowing my cabinets? You have got to be kidding me.
I pulled out the jars, found the beans, and stuck them all on a tray. And he loved it. I showed him how to place his hands, how to pour, and left him alone.
Beans are a really great start because they are easy to pour, easy to clean up, and offer something to focus on. To introduce the activity you need two jars (preferably with spouts, we used what we had), beans and a tray.
-Introduce the tray
-Demonstrate how to pour one into the other (pick up with left hand, place right hand underneath, and pour)
-Place jar down.
-Show how to carefully pick up any beans that may have escaped.
You can extend the activity with smaller beans, different object, or water. You can also change the containers if you wish.
Here is what we did today with pouring water. I asked Bear to show me how he would introduce pouring to his sister. He did such a great job!
Getting the water.
Wiping down the tray after a spill.
Putting the tray back on the shelf
Indie is still too young to actually do the activity correctly but she was excited to help clean up and I took the opportunity to show her how to wipe off her space. She watched intently at Bear while he showed her the activity.
Check out yesterdays post on Folding
Day 3: Lids (Opening and Closing)