Oh Waily Activity of The Week

The following post will be starting with an explanation and a disclaimer.

This will be the beginning of a new Oh Waily series.  It will be a weekly* post showing what new activity** the Oh Waily family is trying out.  As you may have gathered from an earlier post, I am currently pondering what to do for Miss Oh Waily’s ongoing edutainment.
The jury is still out on the idea of a Montessori pre-school, and from what I have read so far may stay out.  In the meantime, while I am still thinking and researching the options (Monterssori, Classical Trivium, Homeschooling, mainstream preschools/schools, etc.) we will be instigating some of the very sensible and attractive (to us) ideas gleaned from reading Tim Seldin’s wonderful book How To Raise An Amazing Child the Montessori Way as well as those I have pinched from a number of blogs that have made themselves at home in my NetNewsWire.  I will let you know who these good folk are in due course.

Many of the activities in this series will smack of Montessori activities, but that is not the sole source or inspiration.  If you are visiting for the first time and are a dyed-in-the-wool strict follower of one or the other, or the other other, ad nauseum version of Montessori, please don’t leave nasty comments regarding the missing steps or lack of any anal-retentive “rules” you may feel I am ignoring, missing or misrepresenting.  I am in no way claiming any relationship, knowledge or trained skill in the “Montessori method”.  I am an educator by way of being a full-time Mum, not by way of a B.Ed., or any other form of teaching degree. ***
I will do my best to identify the source and inspiration for each activity, including links to books and blogs.

Here endeth the one-time only preamble.  Now we can move along to the actual activity of the week.


Sorting Objects: Buttons

This was one of the first activities that I chose to try out with Miss Oh Waily.  It came from Tim Seldin’s book (see above).  I thought it would be a good starting point to assess her interest in doing planned activity, and what sort of skill level and capacity she might actually have.  Turns out that this was a walk in the park.

What we used:
Buttons – 3 types, 4 of each type.
Bowls and recycled baby food jars.
A tray with a mat.

The first step was to lay everything out, then show Miss OWW what to do.

The Start

The next step was to let her do it.  And off she went.  Red buttons first.

Red First

Then the yellow buttons.

Yellow Second

And finally the blue buttons.

Blue Last

Until we are finished.

The Finish

As I said, this was far too easy and she did it first time.  Then she got bored and just started to mix the buttons up deliberately, with a sly smirk on her face while watching for my reaction.  So I thought I would ask her to put the biggest buttons in one jar – which she went ahead and did.  Then I asked her to do the same with the smallest buttons.  Again, all done on first attempts with no prompting by me.  Now I need to find a more challenging version of sorting.


* or bi-weekly, if I run out of time, energy and a co-operative toddler.
** or activities, if I have the time, energy and a particularly keen toddler.
*** I believe this is called full disclosure.

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