Wednesday, 11 March 2009

A busy morning

We had a busy morning yesterday, it was the first time we have actually worked in the Montessori room for quite some time, whilst it has been cold we have taken the work downstairs. Now the weather is warming up we can move back upstairs - until it gets too hot in the summer!
First he picked the magnetic hiragana, he knows all the characters, I'm not sure why he picked to do this one, once he has them in place on the board he started spelling things out. Of course he ran into a problem when he needed one of the characters more than once!

While he was busy with his hiragana I got out the maths album as I went through, I realised we had done the counting with counters but not the extension, with my new super organised cupboard, it only took me a couple of minutes to set up the activity. In a basket I put objects counting up to 10, 1 pumpkin, 2 cherries, 3 carrots etc. put the basket on a tray along with the number cards 1-10.
First he rolled out the long mat and set out the numbers along the top, and then he sorted the fruit and veg into piles.
Working from 1 he placed the fruit and veg under the numbers, for this activity it is important that they are lined up correctly. The objects need to be in pairs, if it is an odd number place the last object in the middle at the bottom, like these...
When he had finished laying the objects out I told him about odd and even, I showed him that you can draw with your finger between the objects with an even number but with an odd number your finger 'crashes' into the last object. To finish, I asked him to put the odd number objects away first and the the even ones. I will leave this activity out but change the objects so he can try it again.
Another new activity, days of the week. I saw these clips in the ¥100 shop the other day and had to get them, then they sat on the counter until I could think of a way to use them. I put them in a basket with the red tape and showed Ebi-kun how to clip them onto the tape in day order, he is just getting to grips with the days of the week.
Once he has finished, he turned the tape over to reveal the numbers 1-7. If you plan on making this, remember that 7 is on the back of Monday and 1 on the back of Sunday. Avoid confusion by putting the clips on then writing the numbers - I learnt the hard way with a similar activity.
The brown stair made another appearance, then when he took a toilet break, I got a box of the knobless cylinders out and placed a couple on the brown stair, he came back and looked a bit surprised but ran with it...
add then the pink tower got added  into the mix....
and finish off with some complicated balancing, that last one took several attempts :o)
After lunch we went for a bit of shopping and I built a little light box, I need some lights to see if it will work OK, it will be good for small or macro pictures but I really need to make a bigger one too, one I can collapse when not in use, if the mini one works then I will use the same technique but on a bigger scale.

I will finish with a conversation we had on the way home yesterday

E: mommy, what is your favourite animal?
Me: horse
E: what about dinosaur?
Me: triceratops
E: what is your favourite work?
Me: erm, designing things, how about you?
E: Montessori work
(then under his breath 'of course')
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