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Preschool Uses For A ⛳Golf Tee 🔨Hammering Montessori 🙌🏻Practical Life Lesson 💪🏻Gross Motor Game •101 🎥 Series 🎇

This is a Montessori Practical Life lesson on a preschool use of a golf tee, which is an awesome gross motor exercise. Additionally, I will also show you a couple of fun extensions where your child will also exercise fine motor control. 

DSC_0117What you will need:

  • a tray,
  • a little hammer or a little rubber mallet,
  • golf tees,
  • a box filled with non-drying modeling clay: rip the clay apart and mush it in, filling the entire space of the box; offer your child to do this since working with clay is a great hand-muscle control exercise.  

DSC_0120Advise your child to hold the golf tee with two fingers and hammer three times before letting go of the hand.

DSC_0132Then finish hammering until the tee is deep into the clay.
 

This activity is super fun! To pull the tees out of the molding clay, offer your child to wiggle the tee and work it out by exercising those arm muscles since it might be challenging. Finally, a child would mash the clay all back into the box, making the top smooth, ready for the next use. 
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A child can do this activity as many times s/he wants, so have it available on the shelf. Just make sure that this work goes back on its place after the child is finished with it.

Well, since you rummaged through your golf bag to find your tees, I will give you a few extensions you might like: 

DSC_0132 Use a styrofoam block.

DSC_0132Use recycled packing blocks.

DSC_0160 post Under HammeringOffer your child to hammer on wood. See our Earth Day Unit Study here

Also, use a larger foam block or two blocks glued together and offer your child to make shapes: a circle, square, rectangle, triangle – by hammering the tees. You may need to draw shapes onto the block as guides.

Other ExtensionsGolf Tee Poking (instead of Pin Poking): for youngest children who are just starting to work on their pencil grip or if you have a little one and you don't want to have a pin laying on a shelf. 

DSC_0006You would trace a letter with a marker on a hard cardstock first, and present the activity on a tray, the paper layered over a sponge or a mesh rug.

DSC_0256 copy Tee Pocking - Link Letter SeriesPoking with a tee offers a little bit more control. See here our 🔠 Letter Series (Montessori Language).
DSC_0006Offer your child to push down on the lines. Once finished, offer to hold the paper up to the window and have the light go through. More on Letter V here

Another Extension: use a styrofoam block for holding tees and balance small balls, marbles, ping pong balls, Easter eggs, Halloween balls, etc.

DSC_0037See here a 🎥video post  🇺🇸4th of July Inspired ⛳ Golf Tees 🔨Hammering and 🔴⚪️🔵 Ball Balancing DIY Activity (Practical Life 🙌 101 🎥 Series).

DSC_0272See here 🎃Halloween Inspired ⛳️Golf Tee 🔨Hammering • Ball Balancing • 🙌🏻 Practical Life Activity.

This golf tee hammering is a mixture of gross motor and an intro to fine motor activities before your child has acquired a more precise fine motor skill required for beading, collaging and Montessori frames. Before you introducing this tee-hammering, you would start your Practical Life curriculum with:

  • DRY pouring ~ read here DRY Spout Pouring 1:1, and here DRY Pouring 1:2; 
  • Also, see here 🍁Fall 👻Halloween Inspired Tongs Transferring (Montessori 🙌🏻 Practical Life).
  •  then introduce WATER pouring ~see here 💦WET Spout Pouring 1:1, and here 💦WET Pouring 1: 2;
  • moving on to food preparation, scrubbing and cleaning, water play activities like bubble making, nesting boxes and so on. 

I hope you found fun reasons to use your golf tees and enjoyed our PRACTICAL LIFE lesson. 

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DIY ❤️Valentines Heart Stickers ✂️ Scissors 🎥Cutting Activity for Kids

Fine motor skills involve the coordination of small muscles in hands and fingers and are advanced by frequent practice. Strong fine motor control is essential in completing tasks such as writing, cutting with scissors or a knife, manipulating puzzle pieces, threading beads, zipping, buttoning, and many more. Without well-developed fine motor skills, a child may have difficulty learning other critical tasks presented in the preschool and kindergarten classrooms.

Below is a super easy ❤️Valentines Inspired DIY ✂️ Scissors Cutting Activity, which took about⏱two minutes to set up. 

DSC_0014-2You will need ~ strips of paper, stickers, a Sharpie, and scissors.

DSC_0016-3 Use stickers and draw various kinds of lines in between the stickers.

DSC_0019Adrian is used to cutting straight across, so curves and zig-zags will hopefully provide him with some challenge, spiking an interest.

DSC_0002Just like the proper pencil grip, the proper scissors grip must be actively taught since it is completely unlike any other grip your child likely used. Most children explore with their hands outstretched and their palms facing downward or hold small items with their thumb and pointer finger ~ the pincer grip.

DSC_0004The proper scissors grip, on the other hand, requires a child to rotate the hand so that the thumb faces upward and the pinky finger points at the floor. Then the child must spread his/her thumb and pointer finger as far apart as possible while using his palm to help stabilize the scissors.

DSC_0006Your child must also rely on his/her non-dominant hand to stabilize the paper while his dominant hand uses the scissors. 

DSC_0006When learning to use the scissors, the non-dominant hand will simply hold the paper in a stable position as the dominant hand moves the scissors forward. 
DSC_0006But, as your child begins cutting more complex designs such as zig-zags or curves, his/her non-dominant hand will be responsible for twisting and turning the paper as the dominant hand operates the scissors.

DSC_0015Asymmetrical bilateral integration is the ability to simultaneously move both hands in different motions to complete a single task. Nearly all fine motor activities, including cutting and writing, require a dominant hand (being left-handed or right-handed) and a non-dominant hand. Hand dominance can be seen as early as age two, although it may not be firmly established until a later time. Once a child becomes comfortable with one hand as the dominant hand, the remaining hand becomes the non-dominant hand by default, and while the dominant hand performs tasks such as using a pen or scissors, the non-dominant hand acts as the “stabilizer” by holding and moving the paper while the dominant hand holds the scissors during the cutting.

A Trick to Learning The Correct Scissors Grip: Ask your child to shake your hand, and while shaking, your child will naturally rotate his/her hand so that the thumb goes top and the fingers extend below (pinky finger is closest to the floor). After shaking hands, pick up a pair of scissors by the closed metal blade and place the end of the scissors with the finger holes into his outstretched palm. Help the child put his/her thumb in a large circular loop on top and one or two fingers in the larger loop on the bottom. (Ideally, you would want your child to place the middle finger in the larger bottom loop and the index finger be a "helper" in closing the scissors.) ~ “Nice to meet you, Mr. Scissors!” ~

DSC_0015Most children become interested in using scissors around age two and a half or three. When you notice your child’s interest, direct your child to spread his index finger and thumb as widely as possible, explaining how this motion makes the blades of the scissors open really wide. Then encourage him/her to close the scissors in one smooth motion. This will help make long, smooth and efficient cuts rather than short, choppy ~inefficient ones. 

For more on ✂️scissor practice, see below:

DSC_0065See here a fun scissor activity ~ ✂️Scissors 🎥•DIY 🚗Car Wash. 


DSC_0069.JPG   A trick to learn a proper scissor grip~ offer a child to shake someone’s hand! 

For more scissor practice, see here a lesson on simple strip-cutting on my blog Proper ✂️Scissors Grip 2 Yo.

DSC_0077Also, see here ✂️Scissors • Primary Colors 🍝Pasta Cutting.

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Once the pasta dries out and can not be cut anymore, put those little 🙌🏻hands to use while practicing fine motor skills by threading! For more on Valentines Inspired activities, see here ❤️Valentine's Inspired Activities for Kids. 

I would love to hear what you think ... And, please, spread the 💖 love & SHARE our journey! CLICK one of those buttons 👇🏻below! 📍SAVE, 💌SUBSCRIBE & 📲FOLLOW

✂️Scissors • ❤️💛💙Primary Colors 🍝Pasta Cutting Activity

How about the primary colors pasta  ✂️cutting activity! Reinforce the concept of the three primary colors: ❤️red, 💛yellow and blue while offering your child to exercise fine motor skills by cutting with scissors.

DSC_0077How to make this activity:

  • cook pasta as directed (we had some old pasta that was past due its expiration date),
  • once the pasta is cooked, rinse it with cold water to prevent further cooking,
  • divide pasta into three piles and place into separate ziplock bags, 
  • add red, yellow and green food coloring to each ziplock bag and mix,
  • once mixed, lay colored pasta out to dry just enough that the color absorbs and does not stain the fingers,
  • *make sure you offer your child to cut the pasta before it dries completely as it will harden, making it almost impossible to cut.

DSC_0079

Proper Scissors Grip Trick: when I first taught Adrian to use scissors, I offered him to say, “Nice to meet you, Mr. Scissors!” and asked him to pick up the scissors as if he was offering to shake my hand. Also, note that a child must rely on his/her non-dominant hand to stabilize the object s/he is cutting while the dominant hand uses the scissors, so frequent practice will improve the non-dominant's hand coordination. 

DSC_0079

Like the proper pencil grip, the proper scissors grip must be actively taught since it is completely unlike any other grip your child is used to. Most children explore with their hands and palms facing downward, or they default to holding small items with the pincer grip (with their thumb and pointer finger). The proper scissors grip, on the other hand, requires a child to rotate his/her hand so that the thumb faces upward and the pinky finger points at the floor. Then, he must spread his thumb and pointer finger as far apart as possible while using his palm to help stabilize the scissors.

DSC_0081Offer your child as many opportunities for cutting until the proper grip is automatic since little ones might find cutting to be a challenging skill which will only become comfortable with frequent practice. And reinforce the practice with constant verbal reminders of how to move fingers when using scissors since, otherwise, a child will likely revert to an incorrect grip (or to use both hands to open and close the blades of the scissors) which will allow cutting but without any precision or efficiency. So, offer various enticing scissors cutting activities to promote practice and be persistent and consistent in reinforcing the proper scissors grip.

DSC_0027
Once the pasta dries out and can not be cut anymore, put those little 🙌🏻hands to use while practicing fine motor skills by threading! For more on Valentines Inspired activities, see here ❤️Valentine's Inspired Activities for Kids. 

DSC_0065See here a fun scissor activity ~ ✂️Scissors 🎥•DIY 🚗Car Wash. 


DSC_0069.JPG   See here a lesson on simple strip-cutting "Proper ✂️Scissors Grip 2 Yo."

DSC_0016-3Lastly, see here DIY ❤️Valentines Heart Stickers ✂️ Scissors 🎥Cutting Activity for Kids.

I would love to hear what you think ... And, please, spread the 💖 love & SHARE our journey! CLICK one of those buttons 👇🏻below! 📍SAVE, 💌SUBSCRIBE & 📲FOLLOW

✂️Scissors 🎥•DIY 🚗Car Wash

Today, Adrian got to practice his scissor skills while making a DIY♻️car wash. All you need is ✂️scissors, cardstock, ruler and a pencil, a ♻️recycled cardboard📦box, and a sprinkle of imagination. 

DSC_0067

First, using a rule, Adrian drew straight lines and then he started cutting, making strips.  It is very important to instill the proper scissor grip from the beginning since the longer the child uses an incorrect grip, the more difficult it will be to unlearn such habit.

DSC_0067

Just like a proper pencil grip or a pincer grip (holding small items with a thumb and a pointer finger), the proper scissors grip must be actively taught since it is completely unlike any other grips a child has used. The proper scissors grip requires a child to rotate his hand so that the thumb faces up, while the pinky points down. A child has to spread his thumb and pointer finger as far apart as possible while using his palm to help stabilize the scissors. Cutting can be challenging for little ones, and the only way to become comfortable with cutting activity is frequent practice.

DSC_0065Turn the cardboard box upside down and cut out a square for a door and few squares for the windows. After Adrian finished cutting straight lines, he wrote "CAR WASH" and glued the paper with cut-strips to the cardboard box.

DSC_0067The car wash is open for business!
DSC_0067This DIY toy offered hours of practical pretend play ~ we all like our cars cleaned, don't we?

DSC_0067

 Do you make DIY toys with your children?


DSC_0069.JPG   A trick to learn a proper scissors grip~ offer a child to shake someone’s hand! 

For more scissors practice, see here a lesson on simple strip-cutting on my blog "Proper ✂️Scissors Grip 2 Yo."

DSC_0077See here ✂️Scissors • Primary Colors 🍝Pasta Cutting.

DSC_0016-3Also see here DIY ❤️Valentines Heart Stickers ✂️ Scissors 🎥Cutting Activity.

For more about the toys we are loving, see here Educational Materials, 📚Books and Toys 🎥 Review.

I would love to hear what you think ... And, please, spread the 💖 love & SHARE our journey! CLICK one of those buttons 👇🏻below! 📍SAVE, 💌SUBSCRIBE & 📲FOLLOW

👞Shoe Polishing •Montessori 🙌🏻Practical Life •Care For Self •101 🎥 Series🎇

Montessori Practical Life Activities incorporate six main categories, one of which is Care for self and others which includes learning to get dressed independently, preparing/getting a snack, washing hands, buttoning or tying shoelaces, shoe polishing and many more. During these activities, children also learn body control and coordination, consequently developing the sense of confidence and the sense of independence.

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What you will need for this Montessori 👞Shoe Polishing 🙌🏻Practical Life Activity:

  • a tray so that a child can take this activity off the shelf and bring it to the table (buy a set of three bamboo trays here), and a mat (we are using this vinyl mat),
  • a set of brushes: stiff-bristle shoe dauber (buy here)  and soft-bristle shoe dauber (buy here) ~ see details below,
  • a natural shoe conditioner (buy here) ~ see details below,
  • a child-size shoe buffer (buy here)~ see details below,
  • and lastly, a foam polish applicator (buy here) which fits perfectly in the natural shoe conditioner polish jar: press gently and rotate to coat or use as a final buffer.
  • *Buy the entire shoe polishing activity here, Or economy shoe/leather polishing here

DSC_0042This natural shoe conditioner (buy here) is great for the planet and for shoes! This environmentally-friendly, biodegradable conditioner polishes leather and leaves a soft, supple finish. This polish is made in the U.S.A., and it is great for the children since it has a divine lavender scent.

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This stiff-bristle shoe dauber (buy here) has stiff bristles that can clean mud off shoes before polishing. The hourglass shape makes this brush easy to grasp, use it to apply and rub in the polish.

DSC_0042 Children learn through order and repetition and Practical Life lessons satisfy such need.

DSC_0054Practical Life lessons also develop concentration and focus, qualities which will help children when they, for example, are learning to read or master addition/subtraction skills. 

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Dr. Maria Montessori, after years of research, had observed that children will choose real-life activities over imaginary ones almost every time because they want to feel needed, useful and important in their and our worlds.

DSC_0057Allowing children to participate in real life activities which will help their family or classroom are wonderful for building self-esteem.

DSC_0057This soft-bristle shoe dauber (buy here) has a long wooden handle, which is contoured for easy grasping. Soft horsehair bristles are good for dusting off shoes before polishing or for applying polish and then rubbing it in.

DSC_0057"The child who concentrates is immensely happy," said Dr. Maria Montessori, and I see it every day! 

Shoe Polishing Montessori Practical Life Activity Care For Self from Anya on Vimeo.

"The child can develop fully by means of experiences in his environment ... Such experiences are not just play ... We call such experiences ‘work’. [And] it is work he must do in order to grow up.”- Dr. Maria Montessori. 

DSC_0057Finally, this child-size shoe buffer (buy here) will enable children to easily shine their shoes using a soft fleece that covers a wooden block. Adrian also finished off polishing and buffing using this foam polish applicator.
DSC_0057Practical Life Activities lay the foundation and develop the skills the child will need for all other academic areas! Real life lessons such as folding, using a spoon, buttoning, cleaning and more, will help your child develop coordination, concentration, independence and a sense of order, thus facilitating immensely in the future academic lives. 

IMG_0086"I can do it myself!" says the child~ and yes, he can!

For more on Practical Life Activities Care of Self and Others, see here "👚Clothes 💦Washing Activity." For Care of the 🌐Environment Activities see here "💦Caring for 🌺Orchids at 3 Yo.

For transferring activities, see here "DRY Spout Pouring 1:1" and here "💦WET Spout Pouring 1:1 (Practical Life 🙌 Activities 101 🎥 Series 🎇)."

For Kitchen activities, see here  "🍒Cherry Pitting Activity • 101🎥 Series 🎇." For carrot peeling,  see here " 🙌🏻 Making Carrot 🍲Soup at 2.5 Yo." For more on cooking, see here  "Making 🎃Pumpkin 🍪Cookies at 3 Yo."

I would love to hear what you think ... And, please, spread the 💖 love & SHARE our journey! CLICK one of those buttons 👇🏻below! 📍SAVE, 💌SUBSCRIBE & 📲FOLLOW