Montessori Geography for the 3-6 year old child

The prepared environment whether indoors or out is where a Montessori child finds Awe and Wonder. The beauty of the environment sucks them in and doesn’t let go. 

The Culture section of this environment is my absolute favourite. It is diverse, centres around Peace Education, and opens a child’s eyes to the world around them. 

We have been using the materials of Waseca Biomes for years. ​

They are detailed, diverse and above all beautiful. 

The Seasons Mat and Celebration Sun was an early favourite. Not just for birthdays but also to learn the months and seasons  of the the year. 


We recently purchased the Landforms Mat and we have been continuing the work Quentin has done in his 3-6 classroom with the landforms. It is an awesome material because it brings the landforms together in a holistic way while gently moving into the abstract. Quentin loves following the prompts from the Level One cards such as “Fly, drive or sail to a body of water surrounded by land on 3 sides. Above he chose to move his sailboat to the Peninsula. There is a Level Two set and Level Three set included so this material will be relevant to him for years to come. 

We love these materials so much that we wanted to share them with other families. 

  
We are giving away this full set of the Africa Savannah Theatre Mat. It includes the theatre, grammar card set, animal tracks rubber stamps and sequence cards. 


To enter head over to our Instagram or Facebook accounts. 
We are so thrilled at the thought of a child being awed by this gorgeous material. 

Something new on the shelf and a surprise

It’s no surprise that I am absolutely in love with good quality, Montessori friendly culture materials. In fact I would cautiously argue that the Culture section of the 3-6 Montessori classroom is perhaps the most important of all the 5 areas.

So, when I saw that Waseca Biomes had just release their final Biome mat I couldn’t resist, because it also just happens to be the thing Quentin is madly in love with. 

We have loved Waseca Biomes for years after we first purchased their Celebration Sun and Seasons mat (you can seen Quentin using it here). We also use their Primary Level Introduction to the Biomes Curriculum (offered for free download here) but we hadn’t yet purchased any of their Biome mat materials (found here). That all changed when I saw the Antartica set. 


The cloth mat is extremely detailed. The 2 Part Card set it comes with matches exactly and Quentin had no trouble finding the place on the map with the drawing on the card as a guide. 

He loved reading all the cards to find the correct names and places. It was something he can do independently however even emergent readers could match many of the names simply by looking at the letter patterns, and the picture offer the control of error. Here he is double checking a particularly tricky name. 


The Ross Sea however, he knew. “That’s were penguins are Mama.”


The command cards that come with the set are divided into 3 levels of difficulty. Quentin does well with the first level and I’m glad that there is room for growth. As with all our materials, to help keep our home as minimalistic and clutter free as possible, we look for items that won’t just be used today, but for years to come. 

The Antarctica Portfolio seen in the second picture is a perfect companion. I will post separately on it as we delve into its activities but it is something that will be perfect for a geography and animal lover like Quentin. At 4 years old and a strong reader for his age, he can use the Set One card materials independently, only occasionally stumbling on a longer word. Because of this I feel the entire Antarctica set could be used with a 3 year old in an adult lead situation and increasingly independently from 4 years old. 

As a side note I laminated all the card materials because I will also use this in my 3-6 Montessori classroom, and I need the cards to stand up to 20 pairs of small hands, however if we were simply going to use it at home, I think I would have left them unlaminated.

This is a long weekend where we live and it has given Quentin extra time to explore with his penguins on the mat. I’m certain he will enjoy it for years to come. 
As an added bonus Waseca Biomes is offering free shipping on their products for US customers until March 12th, 2017 and free shipping of the Biome Portfolios at any time.

Oh yes, and the surprise. 

Waseca Biomes has graciously offered to sponsor our giveaway of one of their larger materials sets! The details will be announced at the end of February but we are so thankful to them and also very excited to extend this giveaway to all of our followers worldwide including free worldwide shipping on behalf of us. 
“The secret of success is found to lie in the right use of imagination in awakening interest, and the stimulation of seeds of interest already sown by attractive literary and pictorial material, but all correlated to a central idea, of greatly ennobling inspiration” – Maria Montessori 

Sunday Book Club: An old friend’s travels

I have been excitedly waiting for this week to arrive. The week when I would finally get my hands on the masterpiece of an old friend. 

A story of a small traveller and his adventures through Thailand, Laos, Cambodia and Vietnam. 

The illustrations are her own and each is carefully taken from her own photographs of her real life adventure.

 Each page is rich and full of detail. Quentin loved learning the names of the different places and his questions led to us pulling out one of his maps and exploring further. 


Amberlea and I grew up in the same small town. We’ve each travelled the world on our own adventures. We now live in two similar cities but on the opposite sides of this big country, raising our own babies. This book invokes both a sense of adventure but also (especially for me) that overwhelming feeling of gladness upon returning home. 

Her book and other beautiful works, can be found here