Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Montessori Outdoors: Numbers and Counters

We live in a state that only has nice weather maybe five months out of the year. I cannot in good conscience keep the boys inside in the school room on a nice day. Also, one of the main reasons I have decided to homeschool is so that the boys have more time in their lives with "nothing to do" so they can just be boys. Consequently, starting in June we cut back to only once a week in the school room. I leave the door to the school open and unlocked so that they can go in and use the materials if they choose when I'm perhaps making dinner or cleaning toilets...fun stuff!Most of our practical life and culture work takes place outside the school room even during the winter months...so no big change there. I take care of the rest by practicing a lot of strewing and try to come up with ways to have some materials outdoors.
Over the last couple of days the boys have collected a lot of pine cones from our backyard...about 50. Today the boys were playing with sidewalk chalk, my eyes fell on the wheelbarrow full of pine cones, and....voila! A very large version of numbers and counters:

Kal-El liked to use his dump truck to transfer the pine cones from the wheelbarrow to the work site.

I think I will refresh the numbers as needed and hopefully they will revisit this work again as the summer continues.


  1. Great idea - I LOVE outdoor numbers and counters :-)

  2. Who needs a spindle boxe when you have chalk and pinecones :)
    Enjoy the warm weather.

  3. You get good weather for five months of the year??? Doh! (In England, it's more like five weeks, and I think we've just had them!) Love the practical ideas for homeschooling boys the Montessori way -- I've made your blog one of my go-to links.

  4. What a great summer activity! Combining Montessori and dump trucks can’t go wrong! I plan to feature this in Living Montessori Now’s Activity of the Week.