Three Years Of Journey To Happy Learning!

Today my daughter Audrey turns three years old! It is quite a simple birthday party with family and close friends. We let her choose a favorite cartoon character to be the party theme. Of course! Mickey & friends won.

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These gifts are wrapped and packaged from a recycled brown paper bags and manila paper then I let my daughter put color and design with dot paints, watercolor paints and acrylic paints.

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Her Mickey Mouse theme party supplies

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I made a chocolate cupcakes designed with these wilton purple and pink icings. It didn’t turn out to be like what I want it to but the taste was just right and not too sweet.

My next blog topic is about the wonderful gifts my three year old received. If you have young kids, this type of gifts are the best for their level of development. I am the type of parent that is very picky (who’s not?) when it comes to buying toys and gifts for my students and of course for my own child. I carefully researched first its benefit and usefulness. Educational and fun combined. The value itself worth every penny you spend for this type of toys.

The Value Of Practical Life Activities To A Young Child

In this blog, I am sharing some important thoughts and insights about practical life skills and also our special moments at home doing some household chores with a help of a young child. First, I would like to share my thoughts why this is greatly important to a growing and developing child (first plane of development). It is important that we allow the child to experience and touch a variety of household materials that we use in our daily living. The more they are involve in whatever we do the easier for them to learn an important life skills that will last a life time. That is the best gift we can give to our new generations of learners”

I still remember a fellow co-worker at school asked me “Why do the child needs to learn how to wash hands using a basin?” I simply answered her “The child discovers new things and they are very curious to learn the process”.

Maria Montessori placed great value on the Practical Life exercises, referring to them as the “gymnasium for perfecting one’s action”. She believed that they not only refine skills but also form the foundation of character.

The experiences in Practical Life are crucial for building a firm foundation for future learning. Before children can master language and math skills, they need solid work habits and a strong inner sense. Practical Life activities are the vehicle to build this foundation.  

Practical Life in a Montessori education benefitted a child through spontaneous repetition or mastery of each activity. Through this activity the child also develop the love for work, independence, hand-eye coordination and love of order.

Core Principles Of Practical Life Activities; 

  1. Emphasis on life skills
  2. Care of environment
  3. Care of self
  4. Order
  5. Purposeful movement
  6. Develop motor skills (large and small muscles)
  7. Leads to independence
  8. Leads to conscious choices
  9. Auto-education (learning by doing)
  10. Language
  11. Raise self-esteem and self worth
  12. Executive Function- In a young age we encourage them how to organize, plan, take initiative and self-regulation. The work itself has it’s own reward.

Through Practical Life activities, children build and refine the internal skills needed for the learning that is to come. Montessori noted that children construct themselves through their own activities. The Practical Life area offers an opportunity to build a strong foundation for all subsequent work, making it an essential part of the young child’s experiences.

The exercises of practical life are formative activities, a work of adaptation to the environment. Such adaptation to the environment and efficient functioning therein is the very essence of a useful education.” Maria Montessori

Here’s a collection of our family moments at home doing simple chores as a practical life activities that a young child can learn and master. As you can see, a very close supervision is needed for an activity such as cooking wherein hot surface is a common danger.

Herbal tea portioning using a spoon

Egg slicing using a bread knife

Cutting a banana using bread knife

Vegetable washing

Mixing pancake batter

Washing corn

Sweeping dirt from the floorIMG_0801

Rolling and putting back the work matIMG_0447.JPG

Pencil SharpeningIMG_0135

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Thank you for visiting my page and taking your valuable time to read this article. Please follow me for more ideas and inspiration about Montessori method, parenting and homeschooling.

15 Effective Fine Motor Activities For Toddler

 

In this blog, my daughter was 33 months. It’s just like only yesterday when we celebrated her first birthday. Her milestones continue to progress that I needed to catch up and do a quick review on my observational skills.

I gather a compilation of activities that enhances the refinement of muscles or fine motor skills as well as hand eye coordination. Being a mother and a teacher plays a big role to deeply involved with every developmental milestones she’s into. Preparing a variety of fine motor activities each week is a must for a very active toddler.

At home you can always find materials you need to strengthen your child’s hand muscles. You can also check tons of ideas at pinterest and instagram. Here are my collections of activities at home that helps my child a lot with her fine motor.

Some of the links in my post are “affiliate links.” This means if you click on the link and purchase the item, I will receive an affiliate commission. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will add value to my readers.

1. Water Ball Play- This is one of her favorite activities at home. Something stretchy, gewey, sticky and wet put a spark on her eyes and get totally engaged with this.
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She’s about 15 months here and so fascinated with activities like this

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2. Watercolor Painting- Great for hand-eye coordination. She still working on mixing water with the color palettes. I love the glow on her face when she discovers different shades from mixing with variety of colors.

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3. Pegboard Activity- Putting pegs into a hole develops grasps and release, refined pinches and eye hand coordination.

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4. Color Sorting Cylinder- Master eye hand coordination, refined pinches and develops pincer grasps.

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5. Name Puzzle Tracing– In here I use small colored beads (choking hazard). She uses beads to trace each letters of her name. This is a great way to teach a child in preparation of using a pencil for writing.

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6. Molding Kinetic Sand- Instead of using play dough, I choose this plain colored kinetic sand and a set of 5 cutting tools. This activity strengthens her hand muscles.

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Below shows the five different play dough cutters. She loves to create different shapes and designs out of it.

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7. Foam Stickers– Stickers are always a big hit at home. It’s also another great fine motor activities that are easily available at home and a good calm down activity for toddlers.

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8. Coloring- Young children can grasp easily when they use a bigger or thicker crayons and markers. It is also advisable to use non toxic and washable crayons for safety.

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9. Block Stacking- Babies and toddlers loves to stack objects. It strengthens the whole hand by using all the fingers. This activity also enhances the hand-eye coordination.

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10. Letter Tracing- A good activity to efficiently use pincer grip.

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11. Dot Painting- The thickness of this dot paint fits well to a toddlers tiny hands.

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12. Cutting- This activity takes a lot of practice and observation. A close supervision will be needed. There are a lot of toddler friendly scissor that you can buy for your child. I got this pair of scissor at Dollar Store (teacher’s corner).

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13. Water Pouring- This is her favorite activity during spring and summer. She spends a couple of hours outdoor doing this fun activity.

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14. Sticker Peeling- I found this at school supplies section at our local store. I use this for her to follow the shape or pattern of an object. As long as you have a bunch of this at home or school your child will love sticking. A great activity to promote concentration, hand eye coordination and pincer grip exercises.

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15. Washing- There’s a vast washing activity for toddlers like baby doll washing, toy washing, play kitchen utensil washing, clothes washing, fruits & vegetables washing and a lot more things to wash.

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What are your kids favorite fine motor activities here? Please share this very helpful fine motor article that your friends and family will enjoy. Follow me for more fun and educational ideas and tips.

Montessori: The Science Behind the Genius

A Year Of Happiness

A teacher’s life after giving birth…

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Being a new mom to a one year old little girl is a whole new experience that brings so much joy, motivation, perseverance, determination, sleepless nights, tons of patience and never-ending diaper changing. Ever since, I always wanted to have a child to give the best of everything like quality education, healthy living, a good environment and beautiful memories to create that last for a lifetime. Now that she’s growing so fast, I am very much overwhelmed with so much things going on my mind, plans about her future, her school, her personal choices in life and more things about her well-being.

I feel so lucky that I was able to accomplished a year of motherhood. Well…that being said, it is not an easy task while completing my deadlines and projects at school. When our baby arrived last year, I am in the process of completing my early childhood training practicum and other projects at school. IMG_3644

Taking a nap after feeding. She’s only a week old here. Very soft and tender. She looks so comfortable on that suit. I need to cover her tiny hands so she won’t scratch herself again.

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Two months after she was born, I was able to finished my reports at school. It’s truly a breath of fresh air that I finally accomplished my paper works, did well during presentation at the class. Luckily I got an A+!. Yes, after those handwork, sleepless nights, taking care of my precious little one while doing my projects was totally paid off.

Three years ago, I’m reluctant to take a course that is way far related from my college degree. As a Hotel Management graduate and then shifted my interest to education. Being passionate with children, I follow what my heart desires. There is a strong urge or feeling deep inside that I have that special calling in me saying “You need to work with children”. And that’s how the story started. I research about education, what does our community need for the coming years, what do mothers like me need to know about their child, how child’s brain works, how does each child develops in each stages of their life and many more to mention. I wanted to explore and learn more about child’s ability to learn according to their developmental years. As a new mom, this experiences and knowledge was truly beneficial not only to my own child but also to the lives of my students.

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