Friday, July 29, 2016

Montessori Materials Wishlist (Elementary)

These are all items that I had in my previous classroom at a Montessori school, which I miss and would like to save up for. Even if I just get the bare essentials and the things that I think are the very best Montessori has to offer, it will still cost me about $5000. Sometimes I miss the advantages of classroom teaching... especially in a well-stocked progressive school!

The very first thing I bought after I moved here was a Harrisville Designs 48 inch standing tapestry loom. I missed the one from my classroom so much!

This list was updated August 9, 2017.

I joyfully use the Mathematics, Grammar, and Geography materials in my Waldorf classroom. I also present the Great Lessons when age-appropriate.


Hello Wood


Waseca Biomes


Great Extensions


Montessori Research and Development


ETC Montessori


Clocca Concepts


Azoka (available at Montessori Services)


Mandala Classroom Resources


Nienhuis Montessori (don't forget to check eBay for used materials)


Mortensen Math (which I like best for Algebra)


I promise that this video will BLOW YOUR MIND.


Some of these things I adored but they are so out of my reach, like the Geometric Hierarchy of Number, a material to scale from one unit to one million. And of course it is color-coded with the Montessori place value colors. We used it in a phenomenal, and spontaneous, lesson after the earthquake in Chile, showing how the Richter Scale is logarithmic. Laying the Wooden Hierarchical out as we talked about a size 1 earthquake, size 2, size 3, size 4, etc. really drove the point home how powerful that earthquake was! And having the Waseca Biomes of the World Mat out on the floor first, to see if the children could find Chile, and the This Dynamic Planet Map (we have the paper copy... it is much more dramatic to crawl around on it and find all the earthquakes than an online version) spread out afterwards... it was just wonderful.

Here's a very nice article on why Montessori math materials are so fantastic. Montessori materials can be tough, though, since the material is open-ended and hands-on but precisely workshopped to be mathematically exact and philosophically correct (I do NOT believe in DIY Mont. materials) and all the teaching comes from the presentation to the child (which must be done correctly) and then the child's subsequent hands-on exploration, you DON'T know how to use them without help. And now, with YouTube, you can get a lesson on how to do almost anything in Montessori without having to pay for expensive teacher training!

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