Montessori activities for Winter Pt. 1

Dear Kids O’Clock readers, 

This is a bountiful time of year and hopefully a chance to reconnect with the outdoors and reawaken all of the senses. As the cold and dark months become more internal, it is an ideal time to reflect on daily routines and rhythms and push ourselves to leave the warmth of home. Puddles, pinecones and mud, glorious mud ! Spending time in nature can lead to some of the most enjoyable and profound learning experiences; whilst receiving a daily dose of sunlight and fresh air, giving a boost to both mood and the immune system.

Below you can find a selection of sustainable, Montessori-based crafts and activities with an underpinning focus on the season and embracing the outdoors.

Enjoy, Kay x

“We especially need imagination in science. It’s not all mathematics, nor all logic, but it is somewhat beauty, and poetry.”

– Dr. Maria Montessori

Children’s relationship to nature is very special, they absorb it readily. Follow their curiosity. Tune into the senses. Tap into imagination.

  1. Travel to a farm where children can see all of the vibrant colours of the season. If this is not an option, why not visit your local supplier or veggie market to discover all of the wonders of Harvest.
  2. A mindful walk in the brisk air, with no time-frame or real purpose. Take a moment to sit down, or watch the stream trickle by, or catch a falling leaf, or listen to the wind in the trees. Allow your child to stop and admire everything around them, to see, touch and smell… and delight all of the senses.

Did you know?

Maria Montessori thought that walking should be an absolute part of the child’s education.

  1. Painting with water. There is something so zen about it, better still all you need is a surface (recycled cardboard, concrete or coloured craft paper) a vessel of water and a tool to paint with.

  1. Pavement chalks. Grab a pack of chalks. Splash some water on the concrete and then draw to reveal the magic. Water turns the chalk into a paint-like texture – you could have fun trying a chalk theatre, self-portraits, seasonal characters, games of naughts and crosses, a long jump line.. and so many other possibilities. Guaranteed to keep them busy!
  2. Sensory sort. For the littlest of hands, you’ll need a few containers or cardboard boxes, filled with various textures such as oats, pasta, grains, soil, water (one empty), with tools for grabbing/sorting. Think pincers, spoons, scoops, pourers, sticks. Supervision required as small parts.
  3. Pumpkin wash. Pumpkin? Check. Water? Check. Cloths, sponges, scrubbing brush? Check.

Image via Kay Duffy

  1. Outdoor kitchen. Digging in the dirt is good for gut health! Even if you don’t have an outdoor kitchen – imagine one! Get creative with all of the possibilities of nature’s cuisine: bring out an old pot, pan or kid-friendly utensils… make flower soup, mud pies etc.

Top Tip: Be prepared with a hand-washing station: bucket of warm water, soap + drying cloth. Children can clean-up as and when they like.

There is an abundance of nature-first activity that your kids can participate in this season. Stay tuned for part 2!