I've been a bit lax about posting activities I've been doing with the kids. So today i give you not one, but two games to play with a three year old (sadly not really appropriate for the one year old set due to choking hazards and insufficient communication skills, so Turi had to sit these out). These are perfect activities for wet day play or to calm the kiddies down if they have started going a bit loco.
The first game is a sorting activity (originally found on this Montesorri site). Basically you put a heap of different beans, legumes, dried pasta etc. in a bowl and then get your child to sort them into small bowls. When I introduced this to Minty I was fully prepared for her to reject it as a tedious, boring and pointless exercise. Boy was I wrong. She approached it with a quiet diligence I've rarely seen her exhibit. I'm fairly sure this is the Montesorri equivalent of dead fish. The house was deliciously silent broken only by the ping of dried beans hitting the bottom of the ceramic bowls. Minty kept at it for half an hour and I even had trouble getting her to stop and have lunch! I'll definitely be keeping this one up my sleeve for when I'm in need of a bit of peace!
Game number two is one I devised to have a bit of fun stimulating the sense of smell. Basically you fill some little bowls with different herbs and spices. The idea is to blindfold the child and get them to match the scent in the bowl with one of the scents from the jars. Minty refused to wear a blindfold which kind of defeated the purpose of the game and made matching the spices way too easy. She still had a great time sniffing all the bowls and adding extra sprinklings of spice from the jars. Plus we got to talking about what all the different herbs and spices were so I guess that was educational in itself. We'll give this another go with a blindfold when Minty is feeling a bit more compliant.