First Montessori Open Close Basket

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 I'm still working on a post about the Montessori and GAPS work we are doing with Tomas right now, but it is a long post and keeps getting pushed back.  In the meantime, he gave me a beautiful sample of the amazing things he is capable of today so I wanted to share it quickly.


Discovering his new material on the shelf after breakfast.

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He doesn't usually work on a rug, but I brought one out just for this lesson.  Soon we will start to work on that more regularly.  He really focused in on the glass jar with the flower lid and the small metal tin.

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After a short while he turned away from me completely (before Lucie came over, I just didn't photograph it fast enough).  Its like he was saying, Thanks for showing me mom...I'm good now.  It's tough, but I try not to talk to much and focus on showing and telling him only what he seems to want to know.  Learning to watch and follow his cues is a skill that has taken many years of developing for me and my mom side still needs practice.  I have to resist the urge to step in and see how much he *could* do with *teaching* rather than letting him show me what he *can* do while he challenges himself!

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Showing sister.

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Unprompted returning of the material to the shelf.  At this point, I don't "make" him do this step, but I do talk to him while I model it if he doesn't do it on his own.  More and more he is doing it at least partially on his own.  The important part to me is that he begins to see his work and play as a cycle with beginning- middle-end points.

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As a side note, I chose to start with regular lids that don't flip or screw on, mostly because I found the lovely little red lidded basket for 25 cents at Goodwill and wanted to use it.  I have a collection of hinged/flip lids and screw top lids and as his motor skills improve I will vary the work, first with similar lids and then with a mix for an extra challenge.  I will also keep my eye out for other small containers with interesting openings as time goes on.

All of the contents of his basket.  Everything is either a thrift store find or a recyclable.  The chapstick container is definitely the most difficult to manipulate, while the small round plastic container is the easiest.  For the most part, he simply ignored those two and found the two he considered the right amount of challenge for the day.  

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I may not be blogging these things often, but I am posting about them all the time on Instagram!  Be sure to follow along over there- I know that it's one more social media but trust me, it is SO much better than Facebook!!  If you are just stopping by and are new to using Montessori with infants and toddlers, be sure to check out the Quick Start Guide for more ideas!  (Just a fair warning, look for an update to the infant/toddler page soon.  The post I mentioned above is because Tomas has taught me a few new things, shifting my philosophy of the earliest months a little bit.)

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