As I mentioned in my previous post, I’m making a commitment to doing things the Montessori way with Dora. This has been something that I have not rushed into, I’ve spent about 18 months researching ideas and experimenting with cheap and/or homemade “Montessori” materials. I finally decided that I was serious enough about it, that it was time to take the plunge and invest in some of the true Montessori materials. I ordered from Kid Advance Montessori, because they seem to offer good quality at reasonable prices. I know that I could have spent many times more money and gotten great quality, but I won’t be using these materials in a school setting for years on end, so I settled for good quality instead.
Of course, Dora was right by my side while I tried to discretely open and store the materials, so I had to bring out some of them right away. The first two that I decided to use were the brown stairs and pink tower. Both items are designed to develop sensorial discrimination skills. Dora already knows how to build towers with toy cardboard towers, but having the pink tower cubes be all the same color greatly challenged her. She didn’t quite know what to make of them. She liked watching others build the tower, but never dove in and tried it herself.
Similarly, she was challenged by the uniform coloring of the brown stairs. She did take to the brown stairs much more, however, as she then could walk on them. I’m sure that Maria Montessori is rolling over in her grave as I type that sentence, but I did allow Dora to “climb” the stairs and I must say that it is nice that these learning materials aren’t so delicate that I had to say “no”. She would not have understood the point of stairs that she could not walk on, though I did attempt to redirect her behavior by having some of her dolls “walk” up the stairs first and I did draw the line at anyone heavier than Dora walking “up” the stairs.
As I do every Monday, I am linking this post to Living Montessori Now, which continues to play a mentor role in my finding my way towards a Montessori lifestyle.