Thursday, 27 April 2017

Montessori Inspiration at Home: Practical Life Skills - Toddler Series

Hello, lovely friends! I've been so busy working on some really big projects and I haven't had an opportunity to share on here lately. I'm so excited to announce my newest project with you and give YOU an opportunity to win a fabulous prize! 
Montessori Inspiration at Home: Practical Life Skills - Toddler Series #montessori, #montessoriathome

Friday, 21 April 2017

Montessori Love on Teachers Pay Teachers

Psst! Guys, it's time for another round of Montessori Love on Teachers Pay Teachers! This month's theme is all about Math! I hope you guys stop by and checkout all of the amazing math goodies! 

Montessori Love on Teachers Pay Teachers #montessorilove

Thursday, 20 April 2017

Shark cutting strips

I'm so excited to be starting a new unit study! For the next few weeks, we'll slowly be exploring sharks (and hopefully the ocean more in depth, but we'll see how things go). I've been planning to set these up so long ago, but we just have been so preoccupied that I have yet to get to it. I'm so happy to start! 

Lately, whenever I plan a unit study, I do it alongside other non-themed activities. I slowly bring out the themed works over the course of a week or two or three depending on Y's interest level. I like that we don't then have all shark themed activities, but some shark themed, some non-themed, and then Y can choose which he wants to work on as usual. I think this way, he gets exposed to new topics that I pick, as well as continuing to work on other topics. 

The way I choose themes can sometimes be completely random, such as this theme. I thought that with summer coming up, an ocean/sea animal study might be fun. I wanted to expose Y to something new, which this. Many times our units (and definitely our non-themed activities) are interest led. If I see Y has an interest in a particular topic, I provide additional learning materials on it. 

Today, I am sharing the very start of our shark themed learning activities with some fun cutting strips. This printables set has both snipping printables and more difficult cutting strips where the child must follow a pattern for practice with precision and hand control. 

Montessori activities: Shark themed cutting strips by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessoriactivities
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Tuesday, 18 April 2017

Our Montessori Spring: Desert animals language activities

It's time for the last article in the Our Montessori Spring series! I'm so excited to be sharing a new set of activities you can create to teach your children about desert animals, including a set of free Desert animals printables that correspond to Safari Ltd Toobs. 

Our Montessori Spring: Desert animals language activities by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessoriactivities
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Thursday, 13 April 2017

Earth Day Pin Punching

Here's another holiday I have been neglecting - Earth Day! Every time I look at a calendar, I seem to find myself totally shocked that another day has gone by! I mean seriously self! 

I feel like I need to start getting organized for Christmas now or I will set myself up for failure. This year though, I am determined to have a big ole celebration for the winter holidays. Last year, with Natasha being just born, we ended up winging it. 

Aaand I'm way off topic again. But seriously guys, where do the days go? I feel like I'm struggling just to get my daily tasks done and then add holidays on top of it and I just don't have time. I guess life will settle down when the kiddos are older, but I like the chaos of having littles. 

Perhaps, I'll stay up a bit on Friday and finish off some awesome Earth Day printables for next week! It sounds like a good plan, assuming I can manage to stay up. 

For now, here is the one Earth Day work we have done so far! 

Montessori Activities: Earth Day Pin Punching by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #earthday, #montessoriactivities

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Wednesday, 12 April 2017

Easter Number Clip Cards

So, Easter will be happening soon! I literally have no idea how this happened so quickly! Guys, time with two kids - I don't understand where it goes! Sometimes, the day just seems to drag on, but the weeks and the months seem to go in just a blink of an eye! 

I also need to start planning for my husband's birthday at the end of the month, or I won't get anything prepared on time. He already even has a gift planned for me, and mine is in September. He keeps teasing me about it - but I don't like surprises so it's starting to get me a little anxious. I need to plan something nice for him though, huh? He does work hard to take care of us, and definitely deserves a break! 

Anyway, back to Easter. That's the first thing I need to prepare for! Today, I am sharing a quick Easter themed learning activity you still have time to set up!  

Easter Number Clip Cards by Welcome to Mommyhood  #easteractivities, #montessoriactivities, #preschoolactivities, #easter, #kidsactivities
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Tuesday, 11 April 2017

Practical, practical life activities at 4 years old

So March kind of came and went way too quickly. I guess for us, we are still majorly adjusting to my leg being broken and guys, we still don't even know if I need surgery. Nice and suspenseful, huh? 

Anyway, I'm a little bit taken aback that it's actually already time for another 12 Months of Montessori blog article! I am really enjoying being a part of this series and reading everyone's fantastic articles. 

Today, I am super excited to share what practical life activities look like in my home now that my son is four and a half years old. This is a very important aspect actually of how my family functions, how we see each other, and something that I am beyond grateful for having Montessori in our lives. 

What in the world am I talking about? At four and a half, Y has shifted away from needing to do practical life activities on a shelf. He no longer is interested in spooning, lacing, pouring on a tray. 

Instead, my husband and I are witnessing Y take a general interest in the functioning of our home. We see him taking on responsibilities without being asked. We see him taking an interest in helping us to run things smoothly and asking to help with chores that must be completed. He doesn't get rewarded for these tasks (besides of course a thank you). He does them at times spontaneously, at times because we ask, but he does them. 

It's been such a beautiful process to watch. While I know that some part of this has to do with his character - he's a bit like me in the sense of there is a specific order to certain things and I get a little anxious if certain things are not how they should be. I guess one can say my sensitive period for order never truly left, huh? 

Anyway, I see that little bit of me in him, but I also see the impact that Montessori has had on him. Since he has started drinking from a cup, whenever he spilled, we would give him a cloth to help clean up. This comes automatically to him now. He spills something, he cleans it up. Beyond that, if I spill something, he will frequently bring me a cloth and will help me to clean it up. 

I love seeing compassion and helpfulness in his character. However, I do attribute so much of this attitude of responsibility towards his environment due to the way that we raised him in a Montessori setting where he was treated as a capable individual and where this behaviour was modeled. 

When it comes to 'chores', Y has many tasks around the home that he likes to participate in. Aside from keeping his spaces tidy and taking care of his own body, we do not really have specific expectations or chores in the traditional sense. The way we have our home set up, Y is free to participate in home management tasks and we like for him to clean up after himself. 

Materials are available to him at his level, or we have step stools where items are higher up. Y likes to take initiative and care for his environment, which we encourage in this way. Below, I am sharing a deeper look into specific tasks that he enjoys doing. 

These are in a sense practical life activities that have moved from the "shelves" where practiced these skills to becoming a deeper part of our rhythm. I love that Y had a while to practice these skills, and can now independently carry out such tasks without needing (necessarily) reminders or nagging because they have become a part of our daily structure. 
Practical, practical life activities at 4 years old by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori

Practical life activities at four and a half 

Monday, 10 April 2017

Respecting our babies

One of my favourite things about Montessori is that children are treated with respect and dignity. I think that at the core, more than the materials, Montessori is about how we see children as capable individuals. 

When it comes to babies however, our youngest family members that can't talk, it may be harder to show respect and dignity. Today, I am sharing a few small ways in which my husband and I try to treat baby N with respect - to give her dignity and keep her preferences in consideration. 
Montessori inspired living: Respecting our babies by Welcome to Mommyhood #montesori, #montessoriinspired #montessoriathome, #montessoribabies

Saturday, 8 April 2017

Easter shape matching

So Easter will be happening soon! I have reaaaally been late with preparing Easter materials for our shelves. Just with all the hospital visits and everything, I've been a bit distracted. 

I'm finally trying to catch up though! Yay! Today, I want to share a little something that I created for my little niece - a fun Easter inspired shape matching work. I thought these little Easter inspired bunnies were just so cute and silly that I couldn't help myself! 

Easter shape matching printables by Welcome to Mommyhood #toddleractivities, #preschoolactivities, #easteractivities

Y helped me to cut out the materials and thought the work was so funny! He's four and a half so matching the shapes was a breeze for him, but he insisted on doing it anyway. 

It was a lot of fun to create this work, as well as work on laminating and cutting everything out with Y! To get your own free set, scroll down below! You can also read about how we set up this activity! 

Friday, 7 April 2017

Getting started with shelf activities - How to choose the perfect Montessori tray

When starting off with Montessori or tray activities, something that I think deserves a bit of basic attention is a discussion of the trays themselves! Not just the activities! 

The trays? What's so special about them? Well, that's what we'll be discussing today! Different types of trays and why it matters. 

While the activities themselves are crucial to learning, the type of tray we use is important beyond just offering an aesthetically pleasing appearance to the shelves. The type of tray we present activities on can make it more difficult for children to get activities themselves and clean them up.

In Montessori, it is important that activities are presented in a way that is logical and tidy for children. Using a tray that does not fit the work can also be distracting. If the work cannot be presented in a way that is logical, a child may not know where to begin with the activity, or how to clean it up when she or he is finished. Choosing the right trays for your home is pretty simple, but there are a few things to keep in mind. 

How to choose the perfect Montessori tray by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessorihome, #preschool,
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Thursday, 6 April 2017

The Prepared Adult: finding time for yourself and making activities

I recently wrote about how important it is that we adults find time for self care. With that, I think it's also important to share a few small ways that I manage to make time for myself and make it easier on myself to run my home. 

These are small tips of course because let's be real, when we are in the trenches of raising small children, it's so hard to make that time to think about yourself. However, I find that the small things really do make a difference in helping me to relax and keeping me more pleasant to be around. 

At some point, I do need a bigger break, and I'm very thankful that my husband is understanding of those moments. During the weekends, he will take Y outside so they can work on construction of our home. It gives the boys some time to bond, and while Natasha naps, I am able to get somethings done or just take a rest. 

This article isn't about those bigger breaks as important as they are. Today, we'll chat in more depth about the prepared adult and some of the important ways I keep myself calm and ready for the day! 

The Prepared Adult: finding time for yourself and making activities by Welcome to Mommyhood #preparedadult, #montessori, #montessorihome, #montessorifamily

Wednesday, 5 April 2017

Green bean life cycle printables

We have recently started preparing out garden for spring. Because we are still (yes, still!) working on our home, our backyard is still home to never ending construction materials. So we started working on the front yard. 

While, it's not the ideal place to plant our veggies, we did start. Y is just so enthusiastic (and so am I) that we can't wait another year to get started on gardening. One of the plants that we will definitely get to planting this year is green beans! I think they are nice because they grow up so even from my wheelchair, I can access them! So green beans, peas, and anything that goes up is always a win in my book. 

To prepare and give Y some background, I created a new set of green bean plant life cycle materials! You can use these to create a hands on unit study to teach little ones all about green beans! I am very excited to combine this with a study of a real plant! 

Montessori Activities - Green bean life cycle printables by Welcome to Mommyhood #lifecycleactivities, #montessori, #Montessoriactivities, #preschoolactivities, #springactivities,
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Montessori Activities: 

green beans life cycle printables

Tuesday, 4 April 2017

Our Montessori Spring:insect magnifying glass cards

With spring in full swing, we are enjoying studying all sorts of interesting topics pertaining to nature and the outdoors! We are so excited to spend more time outside in nature. 

Y has been loving working on our garden - although sadly due to construction work, we have only been busy in the front yard because the back yard is still filled with construction materials and work on our extension. 

Nonetheless, we have been getting out as much as possible until Y got the chicken pox! To distract him, I created a fun nature themed exploration to distract him from what he calls his 'bumps'. These fun cards can be used in so many ways to explore insects - a fun, spring theme! 

Our Montessori Spring:insect magnifying glass cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessoriactivities, #insects, #springactivities, #preschoolactivities
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Easter pin punching printables

With all of the chaos surrounding my broken leg and surgery and general upheaval going on in our lives right now, I have kind of let our Easter activities slip by. I was really looking forward to preparing some lovely themed shelves. 

Unfortunately, because of the chaos, I am going to scale down a bit. Need to be a bit practical after all. I do have a few activities for toddlers prepped though for my little niece so I will definitely share those with all of you. 

As for Y, I am going to keep it simple. Today, I am very excited to share our pin punching printables! Luckily, I had these already prepared in advance so I was able to get them up quickly. In the coming days, I need to get myself organized and get more up (again, depending on news regarding surgery). 

The activities that I have already prepped though have been so useful because Y has chicken pox. Guys, eek. April is really starting out as a tough month for us. I really hope we get a little bit of a break soon with this craziness because hubby and I are exhausted. 

Actually, even with being so exhausted, I am super excited that I have figured out how to do laundry with my cast and wheelchair. Guys, it's not easy, but the never ending pile of wash has been driving me absolutely mad. I'm happy to be able to tackle it now. 

Okay, back to activities! Here are our Easter themed pin punching printables! A cute little way to get a bit of prewriting work done all in a fun Easter theme! 

Spring activities: Montessori inspired Easter pin punching printables by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessoriactivities #preschoolactivities #springactivities
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Thursday, 30 March 2017

Flowers math bundle

It's spring, it's spring, it's spring! We've been so lucky with some beautiful spring weather lately! I have been inspired to create some flowers themed learning resources as we transition away from yucky, cold Dutch winter into a rainy, but surprisingly warm spring! 

I really love the have fresh flowers in my home, which makes me a little tempted to try to plant some! But we have big plans for a veggie garden and I'm already super slow and struggling with my leg broken and such so I'm not too sure that flowers in the garden will happen this year. 

However, I am very excited to start seeing more flowers at local markets, which will make it the perfect time to explore flowers and plants in our learning activities! 

Today, I am sharing our newest Flowers themed math bundle! 

Montessori Activities for spring: flowers math learning activities by Welcome to Mommyhood #math, #montessor, #montessoriactivities, #springactivities
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Wednesday, 29 March 2017

Dealing with Paralysis: How to help someone dealing with a health crisis or a difficult time

I remember very early on after coming home from the rehabiliation center and needing to adjust to life now, having a conversation with a friend. She said she was nervous visiting me in the hospital and the centre because she was never sure what to say or do. She didn't want to say something to upset me, but also wanted to help in some way. Today, I want to share what I found useful and some insight into what I did and would have appreciated from friends and family during the recovery process. 

Now, that I have broken my leg and find my mobility again compromised, I am also trying to be very clear with loved ones about what is and is not helpful. Honestly though, even that is stressful and I wish I didn't need to. Hopefully, if you do find yourself in a position to help someone, these tips can help you to help someone else! 

First and foremost, I want to put a disclaimer out there that everyone is different and what works for one person will not necessarily work for someone else. Just because if you were the one ill one that particular form of help would help you, does not mean that that particular form of help would work for me. Also with the tips I am sharing today, keep in mind, everyone is just different. 
Dealing with paralysis: How to help someone dealing with a health crisis #paralysis, #healthproblems

Sunday, 26 March 2017

Montessori beads 3 part cards 0-30

Given that I am still a bit out of commission, I have been preparing some new printables and materials for when I am feeling a bit better. Life has been a bit hectic to say the least, so I am not terribly concerned with swapping out shelf materials at home right now. Plus, we've had some gorgeous weather come in, so my family has been trying to get more outdoor time in anyway. 

For now, I'm trying to prep a few new printables though for when I am feeling up to bending to swap out activities, and of course cutting and laminating, a chore many homeschoolers and teachers are familiar with, right?

So instead of thinking about how I am going to deal with knee surgery and another yucky round of hospital stays, IVs, and being away from home, I've prepared a fun set of Montessori inspired 3 part cards. Because I need to distract myself! 

Speaking of distracting myself... last night, hubby and I decided to have an in bed movie night with the kids. Natasha is only 4 months old so she was more interested in nursing and sleeping than anything else, but Yvann (4.5 years old) was very excited. We decided, as per his request, to watch Finding Dory (yes finally!). Y was so excited to have popcorn in Mommy and Daddy's bed and to hang out with us. 

Half way through the movie, he asked if he could go to bed. And Mommy and Daddy finished watching the movie alone. Family movie night didn't quite go as planned - Y doesn't quite have the patience to sit through an entire movie. He can only sit still for so long if he has lego to build with which is of course perfectly fine with us! Although, I do have to admit, I was a little disappointed Y left our bed so soon because I was very excited for the cuddles with him. 

Okay, okay, my totally random story has nothing to do with Montessori activities so let's get to it! Scroll down to read all about how you can use these free number cards to practice counting and number quantity with your kiddo! 

Montessori activities: montessori beads 3 part cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessoriactivities, #preschool, #preschoolactivities

Saturday, 25 March 2017

The importance of self care

Today,  I want to talk to you guys about self care and how important it is to just make that time for yourself. Even if it means ignoring some tasks like dishes, even if you think you don't have time for it, even if you can't fathom ignoring that laundry. Please, just think about yourself. You deserve it! 

The importance of self care: a lesson in not forgetting about you by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessorihome, #preparedadult, #selfcare, #parenting, #mother

Friday, 24 March 2017

Easter basket ideas for toddlers

Easter is coming up so fast! Today, I wanted to share some fun ideas that you could include in an Easter Basket for a toddler! No candy or treats, but fun toys that are engaging for young minds! Let's have a look!

Easter basket ideas for toddlers by Welcome to Mommyhood #easter #toddlergiftguide
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Thursday, 23 March 2017

What's up? Where did I go? A huge lesson in taking time for self care

If you aren't following along on facebook or instagram, you may have missed my announcement. The reason why it's been so quiet on here suddenly is that I was in the hospital battling what seemed to be an infection and a broken leg. It has been rough to say the least. 

Life update by Welcome to Mommyhood #paralysis

Using Montessori beads to teach the value of money

Y has gotten to that age where he wants to buy things. Pretty much any lego he sees is guaranteed to get a 'Mom, Dad, can we get it, pleeeeeaasssseee?' 

Since he doesn't really know how much things cost or what money is (also doesn't help to much that we tend to buy things online or use our debit card in stores), I wanted to create some activities that focus on teaching him how much money is actually worth. 

To do this, I created a simple activity using Montessori beads. I only used four of our coins (euro), but you can easily do this with whatever currency your country uses. 

Teaching children about money with Montessori beads by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori #money #montessoriactivities
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Tuesday, 14 March 2017

Water cycle and weather unit

I'm so excited to finally be sharing the full set of weather themed activities we covered with Y! It's taken me ages to collect all of the photos because we really went deep!

With large themed activities like this, I actually like to really break up the activities. I don't like to put too many works up at one time for Y onto the shelves. So even though you will be seeing all of the water cycle and weather themed activities we did do, please note that these were not all available to Y at the same time - only 4 or so at once. I also like to keep one or two works out that are not necessarily related to our  main theme.

So what did we cover? Have a look! 

Montessori activities: hands on weather printables and  activities by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #preschool, #scienceactivities, #totlabs, #Montessoriactivities
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Monday, 13 March 2017

Umbrella counting cards 3 ways to count

Today, I am excited to share a fun, spring themed set of printables and several ways to use them! Learning number quantity (how much a number is) can be a difficult concept for children, but it is very important to learn aside from just the number symbol we are used to writing. You can use these cute umbrella counting cards to help your child learn how much a number is! Look below for all of the fun ways these cards can be used!   

Spring activities: Umbrella number cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #preschoolactivities, #numbersactivities, #toddleractivities, #totlabs, #springactivities

I am very excited to be sharing not just how we used these fun printables, but several ways that you can create hands on activities using these cards! 

Spring activities: Umbrella number cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #preschoolactivities, #numbersactivities, #toddleractivities, #totlabs, #springactivities

Sunday, 12 March 2017

St Patrick's Day Salt Tray

St Patrick's Day is coming so quickly! Only less than a week away! We have used this time to get a few nice St Patrick's Day themed activities in! Today, I am sharing a nice way to practice writing using our St Patrick's Day salt tray cards! 

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Saturday, 11 March 2017

Clouds 4 part cards

Y and I have been enjoying our weather theme very much! I know we started it quite a while ago. I've been slowly working through this unit in combination with a few other types of works. Really, I like this pace as this weather unit is pretty intense for Y. There is so much new and interesting information that it is nice to space it out a bit. 

Now, he is really studying different types of clouds. We observe the types of clouds we see in the window, too. I suppose this is another advantage to spreading out this theme - we get more time to observe and work that into the unit itself! Of course, we will continue looking at clouds even after we move onto a different theme. 

Today, I am sharing how I taught Y the names of different clouds using our 4 part cards! 

Montessori activities: clouds 3 part cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #preschool, #3partcards, #scienceactivities, #totlabs, #Montessoriactivities

Friday, 10 March 2017

Easy to set up spring themed activities for toddlers

Have you noticed I haven't been sharing many printables lately? Don't worry, I have a bunch still in the works, I just haven't felt much like cutting things out. In between being busy with the kids during the day, my evening work sessions have turned into evening cuddle sessions with either the baby or the husband or both. I don't regret it though. Sometimes, we just need a little time with our loved ones, right? 

When it comes to learning activities however, printables or not, I do like to have activities ready! Today, I am sharing three very, very easy to set up learning activities that you can prepare for your children when you are pressed for time. 

3 easy to set up Montessori inspired Spring activities for toddlers by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #springactivities, #spring, #montessoriactivities

Thursday, 9 March 2017

St Patrick's Day prewriting tray

While I have shown how we use salt trays with Y now that he is learning how to write, today I wanted to also share how you can set up a pre writing tray for slightly younger children. Of course, with St Patrick's Day approaching, I couldn't help but add a little bit of something to combine both themes! 
St Patricks Day Activities: prewriting tray for toddlers and preschoolers #montessori, #preschool, #montessoriactivities, #preschoolactivities
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Wednesday, 8 March 2017

Easter basket ideas for babies

Easter is approaching quickly, and many of you are probably thinking about what to get for those cute little babies for their Easter baskets. I think babies tend to be pretty difficult to buy for. 

Personally, I'm really rather particular about the items I give my children, and it can get a bit tricky when loving family members and friends ask us what to get the kids for special occasions. For my son, I tend to ask for books or lego as those are two general categories that are sure to be a hit! But what about a baby? 

What do babies need? or want to play with? As a general rule, I eliminate anything with a battery. I find it annoying for myself, but also not particularly useful for baby. So what is? 

I've got you covered! Let's talk all about baby goodies! What babies need, want, and what is useful for baby's development! 
Montessori baby toy recommendations by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessoribaby, #montessorigiftguide

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Tuesday, 7 March 2017

Our Montessori Spring: growing beans

Happy Tuesday everyone! I'm so happy to announce the start of a new series I am hosting along with the wonderful Katherine from I Believe in Montessori and Vanessa from Mama's Happy Hive! We are all so excited for spring that we are organizing a series centered around spring, featuring wonderful Montessori bloggers from across the world! 

Y is also super excited for spring! He can't wait to get our garden growing with delicious vegetables and fruits! We have  a fantastic assortment of delicious berry plants growing in our backyard. I am so excited for them to ripen and to be able to give Natasha her first berries directly from our garden! I hope Y leaves her some as he loves going out and plucking the fruit fresh! oohh, I can't wait for it all! 

For this part of Our Montessori Spring series, I am sharing how you can regrow plants from dried beans. Y and I conducted a fun experiment to see which type of dried beans would grow the best.

Our Montessori Spring: gardening activities for preschool by Welcome to Mommyhood, #scienceactivities, #montessori, #montessoriactivities
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Monday, 6 March 2017

How to present puzzles to toddlers

One of the things I love about Montessori is the emphasis on simplicity and beauty within the environment. Every material in a Montessori environment is well thought out. It is presented in a way to make it the most appealing and logical to a child. Today, I want to share a simple tip for presenting puzzles to little ones! 

Montessori inspired home: presenting puzzles by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessorihome, #montessoriactivities

Sunday, 5 March 2017

Free Montessori classification cards: insects vs flowers

Spring is in the air! We're starting seedlings in doors and even are starting to really plan our garden! I'm so excited for the warmer days we are seeing and, ohh, the longer days are so nice! 

I really like to have more sunlight during the day. I feel so much less pressure to get everything done and have so much more energy. My husband is really affected by the winter days and usually has little desire to do things then. During the spring and summer, we have very long days of sunlight here and it's very nice to be outdoors more! 

I'm so inspired by the birds coming back, the plans for our garden, and just everything about spring! I'm sharing today a small printable freebie just for you! 

Montessori classification cards: insects vs flowers sorting cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #preschool, #preschoolactivities, #montessoriactivities, #zoology #botany

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Saturday, 4 March 2017

It's okay not to be a perfect Montessori parent

I recently read a blog article about the Montessori method that left me feeling a bit sad. While I normally enjoying reading anything and everything about Montessori, this particular time, I finished up doubting my choices as a parent and feeling not good enough. 

I started thinking a bit about my own blog and the feeling I leave you with, dear reader, if you see the activities we are doing, or read the articles I share on here. I truly and deeply hope that you do not read blogs (mine or someone else's) and leave with a feeling of sadness or inadequacy. 
It's okay not be a perfect Montessori parent by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessorihome, #parenting

I created Welcome to Mommyhood to share my family's experiences and journey in many things - cooking, recipes, DIY, homeschool activities, expat life, all the topics. Since then, it has of course evolved and transformed into something a bit more concrete with a heavy influence from the Montessori method (but not exclusively). 

It's okay not be a perfect Montessori parent by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessorihome, #parenting

I want this blog to be a source of inspiration and to be an uplifting and happy experience for those that come here. I never want a parent, caregiver, reader to leave feeling negatively about him or herself. 

Which makes me feel the strong need to share something important with you. Bloggers are no different than you! I promise! Look, here's the thing. As a blogger (or vlogger), we only share a small snippet of our days. We share the best moments. We share the moments when things are picture perfect, or mostly even staged. 

It's okay not be a perfect Montessori parent by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessorihome, #parenting

Friday, 3 March 2017

Free St Patrick's Day Addition Clip Cards

Sooooo St Patrick's Day is really coming up soon! I can't believe that already it's March. The days all feel like a blur to me though with little Natasha already four months old, and Y keeping me busy. I sometimes wish that I didn't really need to sleep - just imagine how much time there would be to do all these things that I can never seem to get done during the day. I guess it's totally worth it to have time to cuddle with the husband though and rest at night like normal folks do. 

Anyway, I'm a little bit taken off guard with how quickly March crept up. I finished some wonderful printables well in advance, but seem to have gotten behind in sharing them on here. So it's catch up time! I'm even sharing a new set of addition clip cards for free with you! Do keep an eye out for tons more wonderful St Patrick's Day materials that I'll be sharing soon! 

St Patricks Day addition cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #stpatricksday, #earlylearning #kidsactivities

Thursday, 2 March 2017

Kids in the kitchen: Using a knife at 4 years old

One of my favourite aspects of Montessori is the emphasis on practical life activities and learning. I really enjoy being able to teach Y basic skills that he will need the rest of his life. I truly believe that learning to do simple tasks for himself helps to build up Y's confidence and self esteem. 

Today, I want to give a peak into how he can use a kitchen knifeI know that this can be very scary to teach our children, so please make sure that if you do teach such things, that you do so under very direct supervision and only if you feel your child is ready for this. Every child's skills and development is different so please only prepare such activities at your own discretion.
Montessori activities (practical life): teaching a four year old to use a kitchen knife by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #montessorikids, #montessorihome, #practicallife
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Wednesday, 1 March 2017

Baby activities: socks for movement

Now that baby Natasha is already almost four months old, she's really starting to move around a lot. I am sure to give her many opportunities to explore her body and move around freely. With such a young baby, this is very easy as I place her in her movement area and simply let her be. 

It's so beautiful to watch her explore her body, and move different parts of it. Really, she can be very content to do this for quite long periods of time - even half an hour! Of course, at some point, big brother comes over to her and starts talking to her and giving her kisses, disruption her concentration, but that's a story for a different day! 

Today, I want to show you a simple little DIY project you can put together to encourage movement in a young baby.  

Movement for Babies: jingle socks by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #movement, #babies, #montessoribabies #montessoribaby
This post contains affiliate links.

Tuesday, 28 February 2017

Montessori Lucky charms 3 part cards for St Patrick's Day

There's something about St Patrick's Day approaching that I associate with luck. I was really inspired to create some simple Montessori inspired symbols of luck materials for your St Patrick's Day activities! 

St Patrick's Day Activities: Montessori Lucky charms 3 part cards #montessori, #montessoriactivities, #stpatricksday, #stpatricksdayactivities

Monday, 27 February 2017

Why I don't make my son share

So sharing? That's a tough one, isn't it? It's something that I have personally struggled with for a while. It's taken me a bit of time to figure out as a parent, what I wanted to enforce, and how to deal with difficult situations. Now, Yvann and Natasha share a four year age gap, and Natasha is only a few months old, so they are quite unlikely to really be arguing about toys too much. However, playing with friends and relatives has lead to some tricky situations and I wanted to take a little bit of time to share our experiences and how we handle these situations with you. 

Do you really need to encourage children to share? By Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #toddlers, #preschool, #sharing, #parenting advice, #parentingtips

Sunday, 26 February 2017

St Patrick's Day Missing Number Clip Cards

We have been working our way through some fun St Patrick's Day activities! Y has really been into addition and learning to add number combinations up to 5.  Now that he is working on addition, I wanted to create a few fun St Patrick's Day addition materials. 

I created some more challenging addition cards with a missing number! These number cards are not written as a normal equation, but add an element of challenge by containing a missing number. What these cards actually encourage children to do is subtract! 

Y isn't quite ready to use them, but I am preparing our materials already. I think we'll be there very soon! 

St Patrick's Day Missing Number Clip Cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #stpatricksday #montessori #handsonlearning

Saturday, 25 February 2017

Types of butterflies freebie

We had so much fun putting together our butterfly unit recently. After I shared our beautiful colours of butterflies cards, a reader expressed that it would be nice to have cards with the names of the butterflies. Well... here they are! 

I am so excited about how beautifully these cards turned out! I do want to say, I only included 26 different types of butterflies. This is to keep children from being overwhelmed by tons and tons and tons of cards, and also to keep this lovely material free! I really tried to find images of butterflies that were beautiful and clear. I hope your children, your students, and you enjoy these cards! 

Montessori Activities: Types of butterflies 3 part cards by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessoriactivities, #montessori, #springactivities, #preschoolactivities, #zoology, #butterflies

Friday, 24 February 2017

Free Bee cutting strips for scissor practice

We are starting a new life cycle exploration! I'm really excited to start teaching Y all about bees! We will be doing several fun life cycle themed activities so do stay on the look out not only for our hands on activities, but for our fun bee life cycle printables! 

For now, we are really hoping the spring weather stays and we can get outdoors more. I'm super excited to even start planning our garden! Hopefully this means we can also observe some bees in real life outdoors. 

Last summer, Y was very interested in them and whenever we would go on walks, he would point them out to me... and ask what can only be described as an endless stream of questions about bees. Where do they come from? What do they do? Why are they yellow? Why are they on the flowers? What do they do with the flowers? 

I was too pregnant to really create works for exploring these topics, although, of course, I explained these things to him as we were outdoors. Now, I'm excited to present fun works to explore these questions in depth. We are kicking off this study with a simple bee themed cutting strips freebie!

Free bee themed cutting strips by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #preschool, #montessoriactivities, #springactivities
This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you.

Thursday, 23 February 2017

Butterfly learning resources

We had so much fun with our Butterfly Themed Unit Activities! To finish up our series of Butterfly themed printables and activities, I wanted to share several beautiful and unique resources that you may use to complete your own study of butterflies! 

Butterfly learning resources by Welcome to Mommyhood #springactivities, #montessori, #learningresources, #earlylearning, #montessoriactivities
TI his post contains affiliate links at no cost to you.

Wednesday, 22 February 2017

St Patrick's Day Push Pin Printables

Is St Patrick's Day really less than a month away? I cannot believe it's almost March! We've actually started preparing some fun and simple invitations to explore St Patrick's Day. One of the St Patrick's Day activities I set up was a simple pin poking printable. 

As you may have noticed, we have been loving pin poking activities lately. Y has really been fascinated with writing, so we are amping up the writing practice using salt trays, DIY sandpaper letters, pin poking activities, and actually writing. These have all been part of a laid back way to prepare him for learning to read and write. He's really been enjoying his exploration in letters and pre-writing activities like these! 

Montessori inspired activities: St Patrick's Day pin punching printables by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessoriactivities #montessori #preschoolactivities #preschool #Stpatricksday
This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you!

Tuesday, 21 February 2017

Paralysis: 2 years later

I'm going to start off this post with a bit of a disclaimer. It's raw, emotional, and difficult. It's about paralysis and how I have been coping. It's a struggle to portray my thoughts coherently so please bear with me. 

Coping with paralysis: 2 years later by Welcome to Mommyhood #paralysis #wheelchair

On March 15, it will be two years. Two years since I walked. Since I was able to run and play with my son. I've been grieving that a lot lately. The day before I was injured, my husband and I took our then two and a half year old son on a walk with one of his outdoor cars, the kind you can sit on. 

We took turns pushing him, and even though it was such an uncomfortable position to kneel down, I remember, we just had such a beautiful time together. It's a memory I'll always cherish because it was the last time I was able to run with him. The last time I could kneel down to his level so easily. 

Monday, 20 February 2017

Teachers Pay Teachers Dollar Deals!

Good morning friends! It's February 21st today which means a great deal for all of you wonderful readers, teachers, and homeschoolers! A bunch of wonderful Montessori Teachers Pay Teachers sellers are getting together for another round of fabulous deals! This month's theme is dollar deals! We are selling amazing products for just $1 only for today! 

To find all of the wonderful deals, search MontessoriLove on Teachers Pay Teachers! 

Spring play dough ideas

You guys! You guys! You know how I live in the Netherlands? Well, some items are so difficult to find here. Basic things that I had access to in the United States like baking soda and cream of tartar. Weeeeellll guess what I found? Cream of tartar! Ohhhh, I am so unbelievably excited for all of the play dough making that has been and will continue to be happening in my home! 

To celebrate this awesome discovery, I gathered some of the most beautiful and inspiration spring themed invitations to use play dough from other wonderful bloggers! I hope you enjoy these fabulous ideas as you start getting your spring themed activities ready! 

Spring activities: invitation to use play dough by Welcome to Mommyhood #playdough #springactivities #springplaydough #finemotor #spring

Saturday, 18 February 2017

Fine motor activities for tots

My sister in law recently asked me to create some printables and materials for her daughter, a toddler. I'm so excited to have a younger kiddo to create works for, and I have to admit, I got a little bit carried away. In this article, I wanted to share a few simple ideas for tray activities you can set up for toddlers to work on fine motor skills and pincer grasp. 

These types of activities were a lot of fun for Y when he was about two, two and a half years old. He craved works that involved his hands, fine motor skills, practical life activities. If I were to go a day without creating new practical life works for him, he would gather the materials himself (from the kitchen) and create his own works. Seriously guys, the kiddo would grab the dried beans, two bowls and a spoon and would spend twenty minutes spooning at his table. Or pouring water from one cup to another. He loved these types of activities! Loooved! 

So! Today, I wanted to share a few fun ideas for working on strengthening little hands! 

Fine motor activities for toddlers by Welcome to Mommyhood #montessori, #toddleractivities, #preschoolactivities, #finemotor, #montessoriactivities, #practicallife