2-Year-Old, Baking in Sweden

Click to see this on the internet News #12

Montessori Ideas— Birth to Age Twelve

NEWSLETTER #12, November 2012

If a child finds no stimuli for the activities which would contribute to his development, he is attracted simply to ‘things’ and desires to posses them.. — Maria Montessori, MD

It has been observed over the years, that a cardboard box is often more fun than the toy that came in it. This cardboard box house has a skylight with a lovely view.

My favorite toy peeking out of it view through the skylight
I wrapped this gift!

When the children had completed an absorbing bit of work, they appeared rested and deeply pleased. It almost seemed as if a road had opened up within their souls that led to all their latent powers, revealing the better part of themselves. They exhibited a great affability to everyone, put themselves out to help others and seemed full of good will. — Maria Montessori, MD

This year we invite you to give your children wonderful memories of activities along with the special materials gifts you have chosen. At the top of this page the concentration of a child in a Montessori Infant Community in Sweden as she bakes bread is clearly obvious. Above you see the delight in the creativity of building one's own "toy" from a cast aside box. To the left is a picture of something we all could help children create this year; a book was wrapped in a grocery bag, and hours were spent decorating it with colored pencils, and scissors.

Remember that working/playing together with your children can create the most cherished memories of all. And giving them all the time they need to concentrate on real, valuable work, and to complete what they have begun, will go a long way to create healthy, happy children.


Below you will find some ideas that help children DO rather than HAVE.

world music for the infant I am concentrating on this mobile

Many people do not realize that even a newborn infant is doing important work, and need to have his or her concentration respected. This is the time to give the best music, and beautiful mobiles to watch.
Here is a page with more ideas: senses toys

dust pan and broom nutcracker cooperative game a globe leaf and flower press binoculars

Materials that allow the child to participate in the work of the family: care

Materials that fit the child's hands so he can prepare and serve food: food Toys and cooperative games that teach children to get along, and to think: toys Toys and materials that teach a child about his world: earth Toys like this leaf/flower press inspire exploration of nature and art: plants These binoculars provide first hand knowledge of animals: animals
the book "People" music colored pencils magnetic letters growth chart abacus
People was written by a grown up Montessori student who understood the value of this subject; people As well as the best musical instruments available, songs from around the world are important at this age: music Giving the best art materials available, and great art models, inspires a child to put forth his best effort: art Learning only the lower case letters and their sounds is the clearest path to learning to read and write:language A growth chart is one of the most enjoyable introductions to math for the young child: math The child from 6-12 will continue to benefit from these experiences, and more: 6-12


The Slatted Chair

(left) A Prepared Environment is one that supports a child's optimum development. An example is this slatted chair that was developed in the Montessori 0-3 course in Italy: environment

(right) Books for Parents, to help learn more about the Montessori way of meeting children's needs: Parenting

parenting book

0-3 Overviews: The Montessori birth to three is being translated into several languages and being spread around the world, helping many families. To see the overview in English and the translations so far (Chinese, Polish, Arabic, Russian, and Japanese, and soon Portuguese and Spanish) go to the bottom of this page: translations

Video clips following the developmental stages of the child from birth to three years: video clips

This newsletter was written
by Susan Mayclin Stephenson,bio


#1 Happy Holidays, December 2009

#2 Montessori Art, January 2010

#3 Montessori Cultural Geography, May 2010

#4 Montessori Parenting/Teaching, August 2010

#5 The Montessori Home Environment, November 2010

#6 Montessori in Sikkim, January 2011

#7 Montessori Math, April 2011

#8 Compilation of 2009-2011 Newsletters, May 2011

#9 Montessori Grace and Courtesy, August 2011

#10 Montessori Biology, May 2012

#11 Montessori Practical Life/Real Life Today, August 2012

#12 Happy Children for the Holidays, November 2012

Michael Olaf is no longer publishing print copies of the catalog/overviews: The Joyful Child, for 0-3, and Child of the World for ages 3-12. We know it makes a lot of people sad because they are being used as Montessori overviews around the world. Eventually the text will be published as books. In the meantime old copies, still valuable for the text , can be ordered from Amazon or from Michael Olaf. Up-to-date information on toys and other products is available here: Store

Amazon, The Joyful Child (birth to three years)

Amazon, Child of the World (3-12 years)

Or order from Michael Olaf: overview/catalogs

Linking to or sharing this site:
You are most welcome to link this site to any school, parenting, or other educational website.