The month of October is so much fun with the anticipation of holidays and the change in weather. It brings out the joyous spirit in everybody. There are so many fall related activities that we can divulge into with our toddlers but being a Montessorian for such a long time, I’ve learned the simplest activities bring the best engagement among children. Children do not need fancy gadgets, materials, or apps to learn. They learn the best by experiencing the world with their senses and by having a parent who is PRESENT.
Most parents think Montessori is hard to do at home as they do not have Montessori materials. However, Montessori is very simple. Dr. Montessori made most of her materials with the homemade materials she found. Her first color tablets were not made of fancy wood, they were made of spool and thread. Likewise, we can keep the Montessori spirit by keeping it simple and real.
For this fall, I’ve put together a series of activities that you can do with one pumpkin. One pumpkin can cost you about $2.oo or less but you can do so many lessons with that one pumpkin.
Pumpkin Scrubbing lesson was always a popular lesson when I taught in the primary classroom but with toddlers it is a fun lesson too. This lesson has water and scrub involved, two things toddler love to play with. Toddlers love sensorial experiences especially playing with water. This lesson also let them explore the big pumpkin with their senses. It is a simple lesson to put together for an engaging experience.
Scooping Pumpkin Seeds & Baking
Scooping and Transferring are both a very engaging activity for toddlers. Toddlers also love to do what you are doing so don’t hesitate in getting them involved with your baking projects. Whether it is baking a pumpkin pie or simply baking pumpkin seeds, it can be an enriching experience for kids. Also, it involves so much math as each step is an algorithm in itself.
That empty pumpkin can turn into a great volcano project with some baking soda and vinegar. The possibilities are endless when it comes to pumpkin. They are so versatile and cheap to use for many projects. In the picture above, we turned our pumpkin into a volcano before painting it and turning it into a Jack-o-Lantern. My son loves to pour lately so this was a perfect addition to our study of Pumpkin
Another great activity is to learn the parts of the pumpkin. Little children loves the big words and by using correct vocabulary for each part this can turn into a great language arts lesson as well.
Pumpkin Painting with edible color
My son is only 14 months old and he loves to explore with his mouth. Therefore, we do not use paint but always looking for edible things to turn it into paint. For this activity, I used the following recipe to paint the pumpkin:
Recipe for Edible Paint
1/2 cup of all purpose flour
1/2 tsp of corn starch
1/2 cup of water
Turmeric for Yellow color & Beet Juice for Red color
Pumpkins can also turn into a great shape sorter, drum, boat, or a candle holder. You can also buy different shapes, colors, textures, and sizes of pumpkin to create a sensorial experience for your child.
Pouring Lesson with Pumpkin Seeds
The beauty of Montessori is truly in the simple things you can create with resources you have available. That is the best Montessori education for children.
If you like this post, please share your comments. We also would love to hear what you want to see more in our blogs. Ask your questions and share your opinions. Thank you and for more Montessori activities follow our journey on Instagram @trulymontessori
Truly Montessori has always been my dream that is now coming to a reality. Let me begin with a short introduction of myself and my family. My name is Disha Bonner and I live with my beautiful family in Florida. I am happily married to the love of my life . We have a beautiful, strong willed, curious, fun little guy in our lives who just makes everyday a joy.
A little about my teaching background, I’ve been a Montessori Teacher for 10 years. I also taught ESE (Exceptional Student Education) in the public school and have been an elementary teacher in a magnet school. My Montessori training began while I was teaching ESE. I yearned for alternative learning style and knew that the public school education does not working well for everybody. I stumbled upon Montessori and absolutely fell in love with this teaching method.
My first training was as the primary guide (3-6 years old). I loved this age group as these children are discovering the independence and the world around them. It was fascinating to see them work and guide them in their journey of discovery. Later on I was hired as the Curriculum Coordinator to help other teachers with classroom design and curriculum development. As I gained more experience in the Montessori world, I finished my Masters in Montessori and also went for my second training as the elementary guide. This is the second period of development that Montessori puts a lot of emphasis on as she calls it a ‘peaceful phase”, which is the age group of 6-12 years old.
I taught in the Lower Elementary classroom in the fully accredited AMS Montessori Charter School for the rest of the time that I taught until I met my son. When I had my son, I knew that I wanted to implement Montessori from birth. Thus, our home became a Montessori Laboratory. We curated an environment to promote independence and a love for learning in our child from the birth.
This blog is about our Montessori journey and how it works in our home. It may not work the same way in your home but we want to give you a little glimpse of our prepared environment and we hope that it can inspire you to create your own Montessori space for your child.
This is the first post on our new blog. Subscribe to get notified when I post new updates.