Happy Arbitrary Obital Marker

Happy Arbitrary Orbital Marker is another way Bad Astronomy Blog says “Happy New Year.” I love this site=It’s not boring!
Also, I am hooked on taking out the telescope to take a look at the night sky every New Year’s Eve. It may be cold, but I like looking at the big picture of the universe. It realigns my purpose in the journey of life, like Montessori’s purpose for Cosmic education or the Great Lessons. She believes a child as young as 6 years old can understand this purpose of life.

Since it has been seen to be necessary to give so much to the child, let us give him a vision of the whole universe. The universe is an imposing reality, and an answer to all questions. We shall walk together on this path of life, for all things are part of the universe, and are connected with each other to form one whole unity. This idea helps the mind of the child to become fixed, to stop wandering in an aimless quest for knowledge. He is satisfied, having found the universal centre of himself with all things’
(Clio 1989 p 5 – 6) Montessori’s View of Cosmic Education

Happy New Year!

How to Shovel Snow-Practical Life

Here we go again! Another Colorado snow storm. We always get hit hard when it is an “Albuquerque low.” It’s time to get out the shovels and show the kids how much fun shoveling snow can be! It’s a good Montessori practical life activity for even older kids.

Start with a small kids sized shove for preschool kids. Even a large sand box shovel will work for a young child.
Dress warmly in layers and provide water. It’s easy to get dehydrated doing this physical workout.

Show where you are going to pile the snow from the driveway or sidewalk.
Hold the shovel so it is balanced in the palm of your hand. Grasp with your other hand, palm up, on the handle. Keep a distance between your hands for more leverage. Take a small layer off the top of snow and push in a pile. Keep your legs slightly apart and bend knees while doing this.

Take a break to make hot chocolate and watch the snow fall some more.
Young kids should have fun with this activity. Don’t make them shovel heavy snow, they just want to work & copy you.

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Skip Counting Beads

Here is an easy hands-on activity you can do with your child.

Buy a bead Christmas tree garland at any craft, box or dollar store.

Printout these arrows

Print out the blank arrows for counting by 5’s
The others have 10’s already printed on them.

Just count down the beads and put down the correct number arrow marker.

For a writing exercise-use this graph type paper to do skip counting. Cut the paper in thirds, tape together to make a long ribbon of paper.

Write down the number “1” -count down to ten and write the number “10” and so on. I would do the activity verticle rows-it’s easier to visualise. Start with the 10’s-most kids find it easier! Of course, do what is best for your child.
Kids love to see how long they can make the paper ribbon.

Biomes for the Holidays

Everything can be a fun learning opportunity. The study of biomes can be applied to historical events. The main element that makes a biome unique-compared to an ecosystem or habitat- is its geographic location. The latitude and longitude of a
biome determine its ecosystem. Also altitude, geographic landforms, water, and weather patterns affect the life forms of a biome.

Here are some links about different types of biomes. Study the historic biomes of Hanukka or the Nativity. You can study any historic or religious event by researching the location and its ecosystem in context.

Here are some more links for ancient maps, customs, food, clothing, and animals of the Old Testament.

Holiday 3-part cards

Use last years Christmas, Hanukkah, or Kwanzza cards to make some nice holiday reading 3-part cards. I know I don’t want to send out last year’s cards, and I have at least 2 or 3 copies of each, which makes them perfect for Montessori reading cards.

Here are some examples you can use -print out 2 copies for each word you want to introduce. You can trim off any part of the card to make the exercise make more sense to your child.
Mary & Jesus

For older children, you can write more than one word label for the card. For example, write Mary and Jesus or a short sentence, ‘This is Mary and baby Jesus.” Older children can make a timeline of the holiday from the past to the present.