Tag Archives: Printables

DIY Montessori 3-Part Cards

I get a lot of questions asking how I make my 3-part cards. I’m a graphic designer, so I use Adobe InDesign to do mine. It works well for me, but I’ve had a lot of requests for something more universal for those of you who have your own ideas for 3-part cards.

DIY 3-Part Cards

I recently sat down and worked out a layout in Microsoft Word that is very similar to mine. The main difference is there is no spot for an image credit. Being a graphic designer, I am very big on not using photos without permission. For my free printables, I first look to my own personal photo library, then search on Wikipedia Commons. I always put the required attribution tag under photo I use publicly.

What You Need:

DIY 3-Part Cards

Start by selecting the box you’d like to add a photo to.

DIY 3-Part Cards

Right-click and choose “Change Picture…” I am on a Mac, so your view may be a bit different.

DIY 3-Part Cards

Choose your photo and insert it. If it wasn’t a nice square photo, no worries! We can crop it! I like to make mine square when I can, but sometimes I have to leave them as-is to avoid cropping something important.

DIY 3-Part Cards

Drag a corner of the picture to make it larger. Don’t worry about it getting too big. You want the main area to be a good size for you final square. (In this case, it is the sea turtle.)

DIY 3-Part Cards     DIY 3-Part Cards

DIY 3-Part CardsNext you’ll want to open the “Format Picture” window. You can get to it from the menu bar (“Formatting” menu), right-clicking or via the “Formatting Palette” that appears when an image is selected. You will want to go to “Crop” and use the arrows to gradually crop the photo down to a square that you are happy with. Pop over to the “Size” tab to make sure the width and height are the same. If you are going for the size of square I always use, you can set the width to 1.97″ once you have it cropped to a square.

After that, you are ready to change the text. You can also change the font. Do this for each card.

This file is for the cards you cut into two pieces each: pictures only and labels only. In most cases you’ll also want the full labeled card. I recommend you set up your whole sheet as instructed above and then either copy/paste it to a second page or save it as a second file. With that second page or file, you’ll take out the dividing line.

DIY 3-Part Cards     DIY 3-Part Cards

Select the two rows that make up a card’s table. In the Formatting Palette, choose borders. You’ll want to turn off the box with the middle horizontal line (highlighted green here). The line will still be there on your file after you turn it off, but it will be lighter. The light gray line is just to show you where the table is. Remove the line for each card to have a set of full cards.

Once you have your cards printed and cut, use a dab of glue to attach them to card stock. Trim the card stock to have about a 3mm border. I like to match the color of the card stock to the theme of the cards. For my continent cards, I used the color that represents the continent in Montessori. Then I’d make cards for each continent’s animals and use that same continent color for the card stock. Sometimes my choice is arbitrary. I chose gray for music. Whenever I make a new set of cards for music studies, I mount them on gray card stock.

This next step is really what makes the 3-part cards look beautiful and last for ages. Lamination! This is my favorite laminator. I bought it is June of 2013 and it is still going strong. I bought these laminating pouches. I have about a quarter left int he pack after all that time.

My hint for laminating: when laying your cards out on the laminator sheet/pouch, put a dab of glue stick on the back of them. That way, they won’t slide around when you are feeding it through the machine.

DIY 3-Part Cards

Once they are out of the machine, trim them down (I leave about 2mm of clear plastic border). All done!

Here are some links to some of my previous free 3-part cards:

DIY 3-Part Cards

Solar System 3-Part Cards

Find more Montessori-inspired ideas at Living Montessori Now’s Montessori Monday!

Montessori Monday

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free Printables

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free Printables
I’m always looking for ways to teach Jax about what we can do to help our planet. I knew a “Reduce, Reuse, Recycle” theme would make a wonderful quiet book theme. Trash and recycle trucks are so much fun for kids to watch, so I had to add one in to expand the project into a fun recycling set.

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free Printables
This is a pay pattern available in my Etsy shop. Purchasing my pay patterns will let me move towards making a living at crafting and give me more time to devote to both pay and free projects.

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free Printables
The 6″ square quiet book features 3  double pages: Reduce teaches turning off lights and faucets to save resources. Reuse promotes using reusable cups and bags whenever possible. Recycle introduces sorting recyclables (and compost items!) into their bins. The cover has a recycle symbol and an earth with a heart.

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free Printables
All of the sorting items can be used with the recycle truck that features a working back hatch. Pull the loop to open the hatch, then pull the ribbon to close it up again. There is also a recycle bin and a felt doll that is compatible with my other dress up felt dolls (fire station and dollhouse.)

I hope you’ll find the pattern files to be beautiful and helpful. A lot of time went into them! The pattern includes a stitch guide and full tutorial with photos and illustrations. You will also receive a coupon for $5 off at American Felt and Craft to help you get started on your felt stash.

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free Printables
You can purchase this pattern for $8 in my Etsy shop, Imagine Our Life. If you would like to sell the finished product, you can purchase commercial licensed version for $20. This is a one time fee, and you’d be able to sell as many weather charts as you’d like after purchasing it.

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free Printables
As a free add-on to this felt set, I am providing my matching 3-part cards and recycle sorting game free for educational use! Click here to download the pdf.

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free PrintablesThe cards and game include the same sorting categories as the felt set, giving you an additional way to teach the new vocabulary. (I include both the North American spelling on “aluminum” and the world spelling of “aluminium”.) The game features illustrations that were hand drawn by me.

Recycling Quiet Book Set & Free Printables

Montessori MondayTo assemble, print out the cards and cut them out. Glue them to card stock backs, then laminate and trim. I use this laminator. To make laminating a bit easier, you can try adding a dab of glue stick to the cards when you position then in the lamination sleeves. It keeps them from wiggling and overlapping.

I purchased two 3-packs of blue drawer organizers from Dollar Tree to use as my sorting bins.

If you liked this free homeschool printable and want more homeschool ideas, visit Montessori Monday at Living Montessori Now.

I hope you enjoy this pattern! I can’t tell how much your support means to me. Big thank yous to all of you who are a part of our Facebook page. You have given me so much inspiration! Please feel free to comment here or on Facebook if you have suggestions for new projects. I am sketching patterns and ordering felt for all my fall projects this week. I’ll post some sneak peeks on Instagram. Come follow along!

Recycling Quiet Book Pattern

Felt Weather Station Pattern & Free 3-Part Cards

Felt Weather StationLearning about the weather is always fun for kids. It is easy to relate what you learn to what is going on outside the window.

I knew I wanted to create something for Jax to let him explore and learn about different weather conditions. I decided to go with a felt set that can both be used to learn new weather words and to post the daily weather.

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This pattern is my very first pay pattern. I hope you find the pricing reasonable! I am really hoping to turn my crafting into a career that lets me both be creative and have time to be the best mama I can be. I will still be offering free patterns. At this point, I expect 50% will be free. I’d love to hear your thoughts!

You can purchase this pattern for $6 in my Etsy shop, Imagine Our Life. If you would like to sell the finished product, you can purchase commercial licensed version for $20. This is a one time fee, and you’d be able to sell as many weather charts as you’d like after purchasing it.

Felt Weather Station Pattern

This pattern included instruction to sew both a felt weather wall chart and a quietbook version. The wall chart is perfect for classrooms, while the quietbook is a fun way to make learning portable. There are 12 adorable weather condition pieces, along with matching labels printed on photo fabric. (You can also print the labels on card stock and laminate them.) There is a slider that can be set to the current temperature. A special pocket allows children to post the current weather conditions.

I worked hard to really make the pattern and instructions look beautiful. I’ve included a full tutorial and a brand new stitch guide! As an added bonus, there is a $5 American Felt & Craft coupon to help you purchase beautiful felt!

Felt Weather Station Pattern

As a free add-on to this felt set, I am providing my matching 3-part cards free for educational use! Click here to download the pdf. The cards include many of the same weather conditions as the felt set, giving you an additional way to teach the new vocabulary.

3-Part Cards - Weather

Montessori MondayTo assemble, print out the cards and cut them out. Glue them to card stock backs, then laminate and trim. I use this laminator. To make laminating a bit easier, you can try adding a dab of glue stick to the cards when you position then in the lamination sleeves. It keeps them from wiggling and overlapping.

If you liked this free homeschool printable and want more homeschool ideas, visit Montessori Monday at Living Montessori Now.

 

Felt Weather Station Pattern

I hope you enjoy this pattern! I can’t tell how much your support means to me. Big thank yous to all of you who are a part of our Facebook page. You have given me so much inspiration! Please feel free to comment here or on Facebook if you have suggestions for new projects. I’ll also be posting sneak peeks at this week’s free pattern on my Instagram. Come follow along!

Felt Weather Station Pattern

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

The winter Olympics are always a favorite in our house. This year we can’t wait to share them with Jax! And, now that we are homeschooling, it’s such a wonderful opportunity to learn.

When I began preparing works based on the Sochi Olympics, I quickly realized I needed to make some printables. Montessori 3-part cards are such a wonderful resources to learn new nomenclature. I prepared a large pack of printables for him – and also for you!

If you follow us on Facebook, you probably already saw our winter Olympics pack. I wanted to get it out to everyone right away as I knew I wouldn’t get a chance to post it on the blog for a few days.

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

What’s Included

I created 3-part cards for all the base sport categories featured in the winter Olympics. I made both a photographic version and a version featuring the beautiful Russian pictograms created for the games.

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

A fun activity to do with both set is matching the pictogram to the correct photo. You can do this with the labeled card at first, them move to the unlabelled version. For now, I am just using the labelled cards with Jax.

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

Another feature of the Olympics that I wanted to feature was the medals. Jax will be hearing “gold medal” a lot and won’t necessarily understand that means 1st place. I wanted to teach him the three medals and which place they represent.

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

I created a little set of 3-part cards with the actual medal designs being used this year in Sochi. I also put together a little matching game with a key Jax can follow to match the correct medal to each place on the podium. He can add some of his wooden number cards to reinforce the activity.

Winter Games Homeschool Printables  Winter Games Homeschool Printables

The last printable I included was the Olympic rings. The logo was originally designed to feature all the colors in the flags of the countries competing. There are many more countries in today’s Olympics, but they all have at least one of the ring colors on their flags.

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

I made a color by number sheet so Jax can color his own Olympic rings. And to give him some self-correction of error, I included a color version of the rings that I printed and laminated.

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

Olympic Rings Craft

I’ve prepared a quick paper craft for Jax to do. This can be done with or without cutting. Your child can simply place the precut rings in their correct places and glue them down, or you can have them make a cut in each ring and interlock them.

To create the rings, I used two of my circle punches. I punched a 1.5″ hole in the paper, then centered that in my 2″ punch and cut out the ring. Two inch rings match the color printable perfectly.

I hope you enjoy these free winter Olympics printables! Do you have any fun ideas for this learning unit? Leave a comment for me or tag me on your Instagram photos @iolstephanie.

Winter Games Homeschool Printables

Please visit the Montessori Monday linkup on Living Montessori Now for more great homeschool ideas!

Montessori Monday

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

I love making homeschool materials for Jax with bright, colorful photos. I normally make Montessori-style 3-part cards: One card with a photo and a label, one card with just a photo and one with just the label.

Lately Jax hasn’t been quite as drawn to them, so I decided to change things up. I’m starting a mini fruits and vegetables unit, so I put together these beautiful photo and word puzzles.

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

Fruit & Veggie Word Puzzles

To create the puzzles, I printed them on normal paper. You could use card stock for added strength. I cut out each puzzle, but left the pieces together before running them through the laminator. (I have this one, and I love it!)

Here’s a quick tip for when you have a lot of little pieces to laminate: a little dot of glue stick on the back of each item will keep everything straight as you run them through the machine. This has saved me a lot of reprints! It’s just the worst when things slide around and overlap.

Once laminated, I cut each puzzle into individual pieces. I normally cut things prior to laminating in order to have a clear edge around all sides. But I wanted the puzzles to fit together without gaps.

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

I am presenting three puzzles at a time, starting with them separated. Later on I can change them out or even mix a couple puzzles together for him to sort.

I’ve included some control versions of each puzzle without the cut lines and extra letter spacing.

Do you want to make your own? You can get the fruit and veggie word puzzle printable here.

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

Farmer’s Market Matching

This farmer’s market matching activity is a quiet book page I made for Jax about a year ago. I love pulling quiet book pages out of the school closet when they match our current theme.

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

This page features a big basket of veggies (and fruit, if you want to get technical!) that need to be sorted into their proper bins and barrels in the farmer’s market. There are hand painted tags that Jax looks at to figure out which goes where. I made sure to include word puzzles in our printable that match the veggies in this activity, so they tie together.

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

If you’d like the free pattern to make your own farmer’s market quiet book page, you can find everything you need here.

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

Fruit & Veggie Chopping

I’ve started letting Jax help chop his apples and cucumbers at lunchtime. This is a big part of Montessori for 3-year-olds. They really focus on Practical Life activities. Activities like chopping help with fine motor skills needed to grip a pencil and write. In addition to chopping real food at meal times, Jax has some fruit and veggie chopping toy sets.

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

We have the Melissa & Doug Deluxe Wooden Cutting Fruit Crate and the Hape Playfully Delicious Garden Vegetables Play Set. I really love the look of the Hape set. Can you believe I found that at the grocery store for $3.50?! I also used food from some of our other play sets to match our puzzles. Out broccoli came from this Deluxe Cookware Set. The peas are from the Melissa & Doug Stir Fry Slicing Set. That one is another chopping set.

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

Other Activities

We’ll be bringing out our fruit patterns and sorting pie. That pie is always a huge hit!

I really love a lot of the activities from this Farm unit by Stay At Home Educator, including the fruit sorting math and seed collage. Fantastic Fun and Learning has a lot of vegetable unit links. And check out the ideas and beautiful photos at Katherine Marie’s.

We have this really cute book that we read in preparation for a trip to an apple orchard. We’ve been making (and planning!) a lot of apple recipes, including apple pie and this apple cake.

Here is a Pinterest-ready photo for you!

Fruit and Vegetable Word Puzzles

It’s Montessori Monday! Be sure to check out all the other great homeschool ideas linked up throughout the week!

Montessori Monday

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Jax loves music. He LOVES it. If any song comes on, whether he’s heard it before or not, he is singing along. I’ve been collecting musical instruments for him, mainly from the thrift store. He loves to ask me to put music on for him while he “plays” along on his guitar or drums.

Arts are important in our family. I grew up in music and art. I have a Bachelors in Art Studio. My husband played in bands growing up and deejay-ed for years. We definitely want Jax to have strong roots in the arts from an early age.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Since Jax is only 3.5 years old, I needed to think of both his manual dexterity and his emotional maturity right now when planning our music homeschool unit. I needed something that he could use easily so that the frustration of not being able to make a note correctly was not a concern. I chose handbells. They are available in color-coded educational sets aimed to help children learn which bell plays which note. Music + Rainbows? Jax’s idea of heaven!

There are other choices that still let you start with color-coded notes (just make sure you are happy with the colors the instrument uses!) like a xylophone or Boomwhackers.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Thanks to my aunt, who values how dear music is to our family, Jax got his started handbell set. I chose the Kids Play Rhythm Band 8 Note Handbell Set because add-on sets were available should we need them in the future. They also use fairly standard colors.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Introducing Handbells

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and PrintablesWe started our music unit with some 3-part cards introducing musical instruments. Jax already recognized most of them, so it was mainly a review.

When our bells arrived, I started by presenting two bells on a tray with a mat and matching cards showing where each bell’s note is on the music staff. I showed him how the bells’ colors and letters match the cards, then we practiced sounding the bells and switching between the two notes. We moved on to playing the note on the card I held up. He had no problems, so I let him have a third bell. With all three matching note cards, we made patterns to play.

We continued on this way, earning a new bell about once a week. It took us about 2 months to work up to the full set of 8 bells. (He actually earned the last one the day we took photos.) I always include a rolled up felt mat on the handbell tray. Jax knows we have to unroll it and place it on the table for the bells. When playing the handbells, setting them on the mat dampens (cuts off) the ring. We started with two sheets of felt, but now use a long strip the width of our table.

Exploring with Handbells

There are a lot of ways your child can explore music and sound with handbells. Some of the things we’ve done are:

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

• I showed him that he could play two bells at once. We noted that it doesn’t sound good to play two bells that are next to each other at the same time. The discordance was obvious to him, but he hasn’t quite connected yet that skipping a bell when playing two at once sounds better. This is something I encourage him to explore.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

• We play find the bell – I ask him for a certain color/number/letter note and he plays it. When I ask for the lower C bell, I call it “middle C” (named for its position on a piano. The higher C is our newest bell, and I will be calling it “treble C”. You can also hold up the musical note cards and have them play the right bell.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

• Composing music can be done by preschoolers! Taking a cue from Montessori’s moveable alphabet, you can have the notes ready for your child to place on the music staff. Using control cards to help them place them on the correct line, they can arrange some notes and play their composition. My music notes are made of felt and involved no sewing for once!

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and PrintablesNew-Sew Felt Music Staff

Materials:

Start by cutting out your ovals. You need 8 red and 4 each of orange, yellow, green, aqua, indigo and violet. Using the narrow part of your paintbrush, sketch your letter onto the oval with fabric paint. By starting thin, you can adjust the size of your final letter: if you drew it too small, paint the final thick lines towards the outside of your sketch. If you drew it too big, paint the final lines towards the inside. I used the full width of my size 8 flat brush to make the final painted letters. This kept the lines a consistent width.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Take 4 of your red C’s and cut strips of black ribbon an inch wider than the oval. Coat the entire top of the ribbons trip with felt glue (including the raw edges to keep them from fraying.) Center the oval on top, press it down and allow it to dry. This adds ledger lines to the middle C’s that go below the staff.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Cut out as many rests as you’d like. I have two quarter rests for now. I’ve included the rectangle needed to make half and whole rests.

To make the staff, cut a 12″ strip out of your 36″ wide felt. You can adjust the width to suit your needs. 36″ is the width of our school table. You could even use the full 36″ x 36″ felt piece and make 3 rows of staff lines if you have room to lay or hang something that large. Using the spacing guide, glue 5 strips of ribbon down to the felt and allow it to dry before use. make sure you allow enough room at the bottom for middle C’s ledger line to be properly spaced.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

For now I am presenting the notes in a bowl with matching control cards and the rolled up staff chart. I think we will do some games in the future with matching and sorting the notes to each other and to the control cards.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Preschool Handbells Music Unit Printables

I have a lot of printables for this unit – many I haven’t even started using yet. Before I use them, each printable will get laminated. I also like to mount my 3-part cards to colored paper or card stock prior to laminating.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Colored Music Note Control Cards

These cards show the position of each of the notes used in the 8 note handbell set. They are color coded to match the bells. Later I will make a new set that do not have color. Grab the free printable here. (This file was updated on 01/16/14 to fix the wrongly-positioned B. You can also get a page with just the fixed B cards here.)

Music Symbol 3-Part Cards

This is a set of Montessori-style 3-part cards that cover basic music symbols. So far I’ve only given him a few of the cards to start getting used to seeing. You can download the free printable here.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Twinkle, Twinkle & Ode to Joy

I wrote up the music to two fairly easy songs that can be played with the first 6 notes in the handbell set. For now, I play them for him and we use them as reference to set up his felt staff so Jax can play small excerpts. You can grab the song sheets here.

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

We are having so much fun with our music unit! Have you done any music homeschool lessons with your preschooler? I’m excited to see where Jax goes with music as he grows older.

Here is a Pinterest ready picture for you!

Preschool Handbells: New-Sew Felt Musical Notes and Printables

Visit Montessori Monday on Living Montessori Now for more great homeschool ideas!

Montessori Monday

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

This quiet book page was designed last year, but I ran out of time before autumn ended to actually sew it. This year I made sure to pause my projects and get it finished. We don’t have any trips coming up that require a quiet book, so I especially like making ones that fit in well on our Montessori homeschool shelves. This page certainly does!

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

There are a number of features to this page: practice with snaps (which improves motor skills and the ability to dress yourself), sorting colors,  sorting sizes, and counting.

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

I included three bins with snaps to add number labels. (The labels can also be placed on the trees!) I left it open for Jax to decide how to use the bins. He could potentially put the largest quantity of leaves in the largest bin, or he could put the largest sized leaves in it. This is something you could explore with your child.

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

When you are finished with the page, you can snap the bins to the trees for storage.

What I Used:

This biggest bummer about this project is that I bought the leaf buttons last year, and now they are no longer made by the manufacturer! When I posted to our Facebook page about it, I linked to the one source I had seen so far. But now all 10 packs are sold out.

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

Here are a few non-felt button options you could try. I’m not sure how well sewing a snap to a plastic button would work though. There is a pack of 12 buttons that match the colors and sizes I used, but you’d need multiple packs to have the same number as me. Here is a larger listing of those buttons. This is another brand, but the colors and sizes seem more assorted. There are a number of felt die cut leaves on Etsy, but they all seem to be larger. This seller has some that are 25mm. (Last photo below copyright Planeta Costura.)

etsy

You may be better off cutting out your own out of felt. If you want to skip snaps, you could just cut one layer of felt for each leaf (I recommend thicker wool-blend felt), but be aware they are more likely to get damaged or lost. You could take the time to cut 2 layers per leaf and sew them together. It’s so frustrating that they aren’t sold anymore!

Sewing the Page

Background: I started by cutting everything out and pinning it down: first the ground, then the trunks, then the tree tops (green, red, then yellow). I sewed down the tree trunks, then sewed down the tree tops. Then I sewed down the top edge of the ground that was showing between the trees.

Note: This is how I sew my quiet book pages together. Because I sew all the way around the edge while sewing on the backing, I don’t usually bother to sew elements along the edges of the page.

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

Leaves: For all of the leaf buttons, I used A LOT of stitches to attach snaps to the backs. Then I coated the stitches with Fray Check and let them dry overnight.

Tree Snaps: On the green tree, I sewed down 3 size 1 snaps. I sewed the matching halves to the backs of the green leaf buttons. On the red tree, I sewed 6 size 2/0 snaps on to the tree top and the red leaves. On the yellow tree, I sewed down 9 size 4/0 snaps to the tree top and leaves. Not that I left a 2″ area on the left without snaps to allow for where I sew my binding and add grommets. I have not added grommets yet. I usually do that right before a trip when I need to link pages together.

I added a size 1/0 snap to each tree trunk to hold either the numbers or the bins.

Numbers: I back stitched numbers on the fronts of each number pieces and the other half of those 3 size 1/0 snaps to the backs. Then I sewed them together.

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

Bins: The bins were just sewn together with an open top. I cut mine on a fold so I didn’t have to sew the bottom. I added a snap to each one – one half of the snap set on each side of a bin. These snaps let you either attach the number label or attach the bins to the trees.

Montessori Use

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

This page works well as a Montessori activity for our autumn unit. I adore this wooden leaf tray I found at a thrift store! It is perfect for presenting the leaves or other autumn supplies. I’ve also laid it out in a tray with the leaves spread out on the ground just like Jax finds them outside.

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

Here is our current main shelf of our homeschool room. The bells will be featured in an upcoming post!

Autumn Leaves 3-Part Cards

Autumn Leaves 3-Part Cards

In the Montessori method, 3-part cards are an essential tool that can follow your child through multiple levels of development. They can be used in any subject to aid in adding vocabulary, learning to sort/classify, reading practice and so much more. Three-part cards are made up of two photos – one with a label, one without – as well as a separate label. Younger children start with the labeled card to help them learn the vocabulary. One of the best ways to use them is with small objects that match the photos. Older kids can work with the unlabeled card, matching the correct words or writing their own.

Autumn Leaves 3-Part Cards

I put together a set of 3-part cards for Jax to learn how to recognize various leaves in our area. I used only trees that can be found in our area, but they are very common ones. You are welcome to use my free pdf to make your own set! I am hoping to take our cards out on a walk once more leaves start changing colors so we can match them up. (Our server caching is causing troubles for some people. Here is an alternate download link!)

Autumn Leaves 3-Part Cards

To make mine, I cut them out, glued them to green card stock (this is simply a color I chose to assign to all my future botany collateral) then laminated them. It makes them shiny and strong. I really love my laminator – as everyone told me I would!

Autumn Leaf Watercolors

Autumn Leaf Watercolors

We needed a quick afternoon activity the other day, so I took some watercolor paper and traced some leaves using my artist pen. (For the exact materials and techniques I used, see my recent watercolor post.) Then Jax and I each painted in our leaves with watercolor paints.

Jax was very set on painting his leaves only the proper colors you’d find in nature. He also wanted to add a red sky and green ground (he still does sky and ground as little strips at the edges of the page!)

Autumn Leaf Watercolors

We both ended up with beautiful artwork, worthy of a frame!

For an even quicker activity, print out my free leaf coloring sheet!

Autumn Nature Walk

Autumn Nature Walk

This past weekend was beautiful here in northern Virginia! Jax and I grabbed a basket and set out looking for early autumn treasures. The leaves are just now starting to turn, so we focused mainly on other items.

Autumn Nature Walk

We found all sorts of seeds and acorns, bits of birch bark, leaves and acorns. Jax quickly got into our “treasure hunt” and was very excited to show me each new find!

Autumn Nature Walk

We brought our bounty home to look through and enjoy.

Autumn Sensory BinAutumn Sensory Bin

I don’t do many sensory bins, but I should! I pulled together an autumn sensory bin for Jax using our nature walk treasures. I added them to a basket of dried corn, and autumn season stickers I’d laminated and cut out. I provided a wooden bowl from the thrift shop and a little wooden spoon (from an old brown sugar jar.)

Autumn Sensory Bin

Jax jumped right in and started scooping the contents and exploring the textures. I’d drawn a few autumn items on our schoolroom chalkboard along with writing the words. I had Jax hunt for those three stickers in the sensory bin, then let him choose three more for me to draw. Next time he can hunt for all six.

Autumn Sensory Bin

We plan on doing many more autumn-themed activities throughout the season. Do you have any fun ideas for us? Let me know here, or send me ideas via Pinterest, Twitter, Facebook or Instagram.

Here is a Pinterest-ready photo for you to pin!

Autumn Leaves Quiet Book & Fall Homeschool Unit

I am linking up to the wonderful Montessori Monday! If you do any homeschooling, I urge you to check out the weekly link up for great ideas!

Montessori Monday

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

If you haven’t been introduced to our Montessori wall map and quiet book yet, you can read all about it here. This post is for the continent of South America! Every continent (and the oceans) will have landmarks and animals. Some, like Europe, have more landmarks than animals. South America has all animals, as it has so many great ones to choose from!

Overview and Map PatternsAfricaAntarcticaAsiaEurope North AmericaOceans • South America

All our pieces so far!

All our pieces so far!

A quick note: Do you have a website that fits in with our readers’ interests: sewing, felt, homeschool or Montessori? I am trying out a new sponsor banner system and I have my 125×125 spots open for free swaps! There are currently 3 spots left, so please visit the Sponsor page to read more! Check it out to the left! Thank you for the help!

Those of you who follow along on Facebook or Instagram have been seeing all the fun South American animals I’ve sewn. I love that there were some brighter colors, thanks to the rainforest animals! I made: a poison dart frog, a toco toucan, a spider monkey, a jaguar and a sea lion.

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

I want to say a quick thank you to Libby A. for the surprise off of Jax’s Amazon wishlist! I use his list to bookmark school and craft items until I am able to get them. I’d added some trims I need for Jax’s robot Halloween costume (which will be featured here!) and they arrived in the mail to us this week! Thank you!! For more ways to contribute to this site, visit my support page.

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Materials I Used

The Pattern (see the first post for the main patterns) Felt from American Felt & Craftbig apple [red], orange juice [orange], gold nugget [gold], limeade [lime green], cilantro [olive green], stone [taupe]  doe [brown] elephant [med gray], white and black. Hook & Loop – I used white snag-free Velcro on the backs of all these pieces and pink hook & loop (loop only) on the front of the South America puzzle piece. My pink hook & loop was store brand at Joann’s but you can find all colors here. Felt glue to tack down the pieces before sewing, printer fabric for the continent label, embroidery floss in colors to match the felt and micro tip scissors.

South America shares a page in the quietbook with Antarctica.

South America shares a page in the quietbook with Antarctica.

Sewing the Pieces

South America: (Felt used: bubble gum pink) For the South America continent puzzle piece, I sewed down pieces of pink loop Velcro. On the back, I sewed a strip of white snag-free Velcro to correspond with the Velcro in the quietbook. I finished it by sewing the two sides together around the edge with a blanket stitch. Label: (Felt used: bubble gum pink) For the continent label, I folded under the edges (just a tiny bit to hide the rough edges) and creased it with my nails. The printer fabric held the folds nicely without ironing. Then I stitched the label to some white felt and trimmed it down to be a border. I cut a matching felt rectangle for the back, sewed snag-free Velcro to it and then sewed both sides together.

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

For all of the animals, I started by gluing the pieces down to a scrap of background felt with a very light amount of felt glue. I glue multiple animals at a time to give them time to dry. I sewed them down, trimmed the background and cut a matching backing piece. I sewed snag-free Velcro to the back and sewed both sides together with a blanket stitch. Poison Dart Frog: (Felt used: big apple red for the body, black for body details and limeade lime green for the background) I started by gluing down the red body, then gluing the strips on top. I sewed around all the edges. I matched my frog to the one in the Safari Ltd Rainforest Toob, which our animal encyclopedia says is Lehman’s Poison Dart Frog. You could make yours any color, especially if you have the Frogs and Turtles Toob. (My 3-part card is not a red Lehman’s. I never use photos without permission and I was unable to find a photo I could use of one. But the photo I took of a Golden Poison Dart Frog at the aquarium makes for a fun lesson where we can match them to our book.)

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Spider Monkey: (Felt used: doe brown for the body, black for body details and cilantro olive green for the background) I glued the brown body of the spider monkey down first, then his hands, feet and face. I sewed all around the edges. I gave him French knot eyes, a little brown stitch for his nose, and a long black stitch to make an open mouth. Toco Toucan: (Felt used: black for body, orange juice for the beak,  limeade for the background and white) I first glued down her orange beak and gray leg, then her black body and wing. I glued the white chest on top and then the orange eye area. On top of the beak, I added the black felt piece. I sewed around all the edges then I gave her a bright blue French knot eye. (Their eyes are not really blue – that is a ring of blue skin around their black eye.) On her wing and tail, I made long straight stitches to show the feathers.

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Jaguar: (Felt used:gold nugget gold for the body and cilantro olive green for the background) I glued the golden body of the jaguar with his far legs layered underneath. I glued one side of his ear down, then added a stitch to hold it once it was dry. I gave him a French knot eye with little black stitches on either side to make a cat-eye shape. I used white to make a mouth and black to make a small nose. For the spots, I made the larger ones using a similar technique to the lazy daisy stitch (a loop of thread that is pinned down by a small stitch at the peak) but used arch shapes instead of closed loops. The smaller stitches are just tiny stitches – some with a few close together to make medium spots.Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables Sea Lion: (Felt used: doe brown for the body and stone taupe for the background) I glued the brown body of the sea lion, then sewed around the edges. I made long stitches on his flippers to show the webbing. I glued one side of his ear down, then added a stitch to hold it once it was dry. I gave him a French knot eye and a little black mouth.

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Montessori South American Animals 3-Part Cards

Currently jax is focusing on his world continent 3-part cards, but we’ve done a small session with each of the animal card sets as I’ve made them. He sees me making them and insists! We will study the animals with more depth when we focus on a particular continent.

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

For now, we pull out our SafariLTD’s TOOB figurines and use our 3-part cards to match them whenever he shows interest. We like to watch short videos about an animal, then study some pictures and draw our own.

I used the Rainforest Toob for these cards. The sea lion is from the Ocean TOOB.

I used the Rainforest Toob for these cards. The sea lion is from the Ocean TOOB.

Click here to download my free pdf file to make your own. To make mine, I cut them out, glued them to pink construction paper (to match South America’s Montessori color) then laminated them. I love my new laminator! It makes everything so shiny and strong! I’ve been giving it a workout!

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Exploring South America’s Animals

I’m still so happy I found my The Encyclopedia of Animals: A Complete Visual Guide when our basement flooded! (Though I’m less happy that my dining room table is covered in 2′ high piles of books.)

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

It has a lot of beautiful photos and useful facts about many different animals. Jax and I will be using it to match up with our 3-part cards and read more about the animals. We also use my iPad and YouTube to watch short video clips.

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Here we used the encyclopedia to identify which kind of spider monkey we had.

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables  Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

I know many of you are sewing along (or about to!) If you are, stop by my Instagram @iolstephanie and leave a comment on one of my photos (I can’t see your photo if it you are private, but I can request to follow you temporarily if you leave a comment on mine about it) or share photos on Facebook. You can also email me. I love seeing others’ take on my patterns!

Animals of South America for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

It’s not even slightly Montessori Monday still, but I hope you’ll check out the other great links!

Montessori Monday

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

The giveaway is now closed. Thanks for playing!

Jax and I will be starting a music unit in homeschool this fall, so when I came across this Musical Instruments TOOB by Safari LTD I had to get them!

Our family has always had a great love of music. My brother and I were both “band geeks” throughout our school years. (Though I find nothing geeky about music!) I played the oboe, and still have mine. I was also in the marching band, playing cymbals in the drum line. I married a DJ and we’ve surrounded Jax with music since before he was born. He adores dancing and singing. Anything we can put in a song he learns faster. I hope that providing him with a solid base of knowledge in music fundamentals now will help cultivate a lifelong love.

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

Disclosure: I purchased this Safari Ltd TOOB on my own, but Safari Ltd kindly is providing the winner of this giveaway with a Musical Instruments TOOB. All opinions expressed are my own.

Musical instruments are beautiful to look at! They definitely capture a child’s attention. And combined with learning about the sounds that they make, you have a learning opportunity that is all fun!

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

The Safari Ltd Musical Instruments TOOB contains: Trombone, Flute, Saxophone, Classical Guitar, French Horn, Clarinet, and Trumpet. Strike up the band!

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

Safari Ltd TOOBS are collections of individually hand painted miniature replicas featuring vibrant colors, fine, professional sculpting, and accurate detail. They are available in dozens of themes, and each set comes in a reusable acetate tube that snaps open and closed for easy storage. The tube also has a spinning globe on its cap. TOOBS are perfect for educational projects, traveling, collecting, and imaginative play.

Safari Ltd® is a family-owned, educational toy company whose mission is to teach children the importance of nature and its conservation through the joy of play. With more than 1,000  hand-painted products ranging from mythical creatures to famous landmarks, learning meets fun with Safari Ltd.

Safari Ltd

Montessori Musical Instruments 3-Part Cards

In the Montessori method, 3-part cards are an essential tool that can follow your child through multiple levels of development. They can be used in any subject to aid in adding vocabulary, learning to sort/classify, reading practice and so much more. Three-part cards are made up of two photos – one with a label, one without – as well as a separate label. Younger children start with the labeled card to help them learn the vocabulary. One of the best ways to use them is with small objects that match the photos. Older kids can work with the unlabeled card, matching the correct words or writing their own.

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

I have created a set of free musical instrument 3-part cards to correspond with Safari Ltd’s Musical Instruments TOOB. Because I had room for one more card on my printout, I included an oboe. I used an oboe necklace charm (and my real oboe!) for matching. You could set that card aside when doing object matching.

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

Click here to download my free pdf file to create your own. To make mine, I cut them out, glued them to charcoal gray card stock (this is simply a color I chose to assign to all my future music collateral) then laminated them. It makes them shiny and strong. I really love my laminator – as everyone told me I would!

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

Musical Instruments and Their Sounds

Here is a collection of video links you can play to listen to each instrument’s sound and learn more about them: Trombone, Flute, Saxophone, Classical Guitar, French Horn, Clarinet, and Trumpet. (And Oboe!)

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables  Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables  Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

Bookmark this page to come back to when you are studying instruments with your child.

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

Musical Instruments TOOB Giveaway

1 lucky winner from the US will win the Safari Ltd Musical Instrument TOOB (ARV $12). If you a a follower of Safari Ltd on Facebook, Twitter, Pinterest, YouTube or Google+, they will throw in a bonus prize!

Who is Eligible:

This giveaway is open to anyone 18 and older living in the US. Safari Ltd. will pay for shipping the prize to you.

To be eligible, leave a mandatory blog comment below telling me why you’d like to win the Safari Ltd Musical Instruments TOOB. After you’ve commented, be sure to click “enter” on the Rafflecopter form to open up the additional entry options. Enter as many ways as you’d like, once you’ve completed the mandatory blog comment. If you are already a follower of Safari Ltd or Imagine Our Life, you can still enter via that option by verifying your username!

If you need help with Rafflecopter here is a link for a quick tutorial video. At times, the Rafflecopter form can take a minute to load on the page.

The giveaway closes 12:00 am EST on Tuesday, September 3.

winnerCongrats to our random winner, Mae P.!

Good luck!

Here is a Pinterest-ready image for you! Find me on Pinterest @imagineourlife. Find Safari Ltd on Pinterest @safariltd.

Safari Ltd. Musical Instruments Giveaway & Free Montessori Printables

This post is linked up to Montessori Mondays. Please pay it a visit for lots of great Montessori and homeschool ideas!

Montessori Monday Family-Friendly Giveaway Linky

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

When I switched to Montessori-style homeschool for Jax at the beginning of the summer, Jax’s aunt and uncle kindly offered to purchase some educational supplies for him. They chose some items off his wishlist, and chose some others themselves.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables  Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

One educational toy they sent was Learning Resources Super Sorting Pie. This little fruit pie has become such a favorite for Jax that we just gave one as a gift at a three-year-old’s birthday party! I keep it in our homeschool classroom to keep it separate from our play toys. He is free to take it out and “play” with it along with the school activity trays I set up each week.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

The sorting pie comes with an assortment of little fruits – two color variations of each shape of fruit. The inside is divided into 5ths, and you can pull the dividers out and change between a variety of activity cards to encourage your little one to sort. The set also comes with two plastic tongs to help work on your child’s pincher grip. Jax only uses these about 50% of the time that he plays with the set, but I’ve already seen a huge improvement when he does.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

Recently, I wanted to start doing some work with patterning. I didn’t want to have to buy new supplies, so the little fruits in our sorting pie seemed perfect. I used Adobe Illustrator to draw each of the fruits, then laid them out into pattern strips of varying difficulty.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

I am sharing these printables with you for free! Here is the pattern printable. If you don’t have the Learning Resources Super Sorting Pie, I have added a sheet with fruits you can print and cut out.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

I recommend laminating everything. I have this laminator and love it! (These are affiliate links, btw. I get a tiny bit of Amazon credit if you purchase it, at no cost to you!)

As seen on our Montessori shelves.

As seen on our Montessori shelves.

Jax was super excited to see this tray, and was barely able to wait for me to finish prepping everything! We worked our way through all the patterns, starting with the easiest.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

I though he’d struggle with the ones that didn’t have a full pattern repeat shown (ie: 1, ?, 3, ?, 2, ?), but he surprised me and had no trouble.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

When we got to the two strips that were fully filled in, I extended them with a blank strip. He actually had the hardest time with the really long patterns.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

I’ve also included a blank sheet of patterning squares so you or your child can set up your own custom patterns. I asked Jax to make some patterns, but he just fills the squares randomly at this point. I took a turn and made some patterns for him to complete.

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

This activity was such a favorite that Jax asked to repeat it again before bedtime!

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

Want to pin it? He’s a Pinterest-ready picture! Find me here on Pinterest

Fruit Sorting & Patterning with Free Printables

Happy Monday! Please be sure to take a look at all the great Montessori and homeschool ideas on the Montessori Monday linkup!

Montessori Monday

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

If you haven’t been introduced to our Montessori wall map and quiet book yet, you can read all about it here. This post is for the fastest continent to sew for – Antarctica! Every continent (and the oceans) will have landmarks and animals. Some, like Europe, have more landmarks than animals. Antarctica just has two animals featured, as there are mainly just seals, penguins and other birds.

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Antarctica was a bit different than the rest in another way: it is the only continent that is hugely affected by the map projection. On the wall map, it is shown as a long, unraveled strip at the bottom. So Antarctica is sewn to the map, but I also made a piece in its actual shape that Jax can compare to it or to his globe.

Overview and Map PatternsAfrica • Antarctica • AsiaEurope
North AmericaOceansSouth America

A quick note: Do you have a website that fits in with our readers’ interests: sewing, felt, homeschool or Montessori? I am trying out a new sponsor banner system and I have my 125×125 spots open for free swaps! There are currently 5 spots left, so please visit the Sponsor page to read more! Check it out to the left! Thank you for the help!

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

My pyramids are still missing… Time to sew a new one!

Those of you who follow along on Facebook or Instagram might have seen there was a bit of a mishap in Antarctica. Well, the Antarctica in our house, at least. Our golden retriever got a little too excited about my penguin and ate him! Since I had to sew him a second time, I made him even cuter. He now is a daddy penguin with a little chick!

Regardless of that excitement, I still love working on this project! This will be an amazing resource for Jax throughout his school years. Yes, I am giving you all my patterns and printables for free! If you’d like to contribute, visit my support page. School items off of Jax’s Amazon wishlist always help! Especially because our heating/cooling unit just just freaked out and flooded our basement. We are now $6k poorer, despite insurance help. Yikes. I am currently saving up Amazon credit for the handbells on his wishlist. If I can get those, I’ll share a music unit with you all! but it looks like I won’t have enough until the end of September.

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Materials I Used

The Pattern (see the first post for the main patterns)

Felt from American Felt & Craftwhitesalt & pepper [dark gray], elephant [med gray], black, rubber duckie [yellow] and gray.

Hook & Loop – I used white snag-free Velcro on the backs of all these pieces and on the Antarctica puzzle piece.

Felt glue to tack down the pieces before sewing, printer fabric for the continent label, embroidery floss in colors to match the felt and micro tip scissors.

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Shown here on the quietbook page that Antarctica will share with South America.

Sewing the Pieces

Antarctica: (Felt used:white) For the Antarctic continent puzzle piece, I sewed down pieces of white snag-free Velcro. On the back, I sewed a strip of white snag-free Velcro to correspond with the Velcro in the quietbook. I finished it by sewing the two sides together around the edge with a blanket stitch.

Label: (Felt used: white) For the continent label, I folded under the edges (just a tiny bit to hide the rough edges) and creased it with my nails. The printer fabric held the folds nicely without ironing. Then I stitched the label to some white felt and trimmed it down to be a border. I cut a matching felt rectangle for the back, sewed snag-free Velcro to it and then sewed both sides together.

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables  Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

For all of the animals, I started by gluing the pieces down to a scrap of background felt with a very light amount of felt glue. I glue multiple animals at a time to give them time to dry. I sewed them down, trimmed the background and cut a matching backing piece. I sewed snag-free Velcro to the back and sewed both sides together with a blanket stitch.

Penguin: (Felt used: white for the body and background, black for body details, elephant for the shoulders, gray for the chick and rubber duckie yellow for the neck) I started by gluing down the shoulders, the gluing the black wings to the back of the white body. I glued the body down over the shoulders, then glued the neck, feet and head. I then glued down the two parts of the baby chick penguin.

I sewed down all the edges with matching thread. For the baby, I sewed two long, dark gray stitches for wing flaps. I made French knot eyes then highlighted them with a ring of white stitches. The daddy penguin got a dark gray French knot eye.

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Leopard Seal: (Felt used: white for the background, salt & pepper dark gray for the back and flipper, and gray for the body) I first glued the gray body down, then added the darker back and flipper. To make the spots, I just made lots of little stitches. The tiny spots are just one stitch. The larger ones are a few stitches side-by-side. She has a French knot eye, a little stitch nose and a longer stitch mouth. On the tail and flipper, I made long dark gray parallel stitches.

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Montessori Antarctic Animals 3-Part Cards

Jax is still focusing on his world continent unit with the world continent 3-part cards I made up for him. We are using our Montessori globe and singing the continent song I made up. So far, He can point out the continents I ask for, and he can usually tell me the names of Africa ans Antarctica without prompting. We’ve also started using the ocean cards a lot. For the animals, we haven’t done a lot of formal lessons yet. We will when we focus on a continent. For now, we pull out our SafariLTD’s TOOB figurines and use out 3-part cards to match them whenever he shows interest. We like to watch short videos about an animal, then study some pictures and draw our own.

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

These Antarctica cards don’t really have a good match in figurines. I would LOVE if SafariLTD would create continent-themed TOOBs! (Contact them if you are interested too!) You can match the Penguins Toob to their penguins. They don’t have any antarctic seals. Mine is from the craft store where they sell diorama supplies. I mention it in more detail in my ocean homeschool post.

Click here to download my free pdf file to make your own. To make mine, I cut them out, glued them to white construction paper (to match Antarctica’s Montessori color) then laminated them. I love my new laminator! It makes everything so shiny and strong!

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

Exploring Antarctica’s Animals

One thing that came of our basement flood – I had to move all our books out of the bookshelves and I found my The Encyclopedia of Animals: A Complete Visual Guide!

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

It has a lot of beautiful photos and useful facts about many different animals. Jax and I will be using it to match up with our 3-part cards and read more about the animals.

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

I didn’t notice until after I took these pictures that there is a penguin called a “jackass penguin“. Oh my! Poor little penguins!

Screenshot courtesy Google Earth.

Screenshot courtesy Google Earth.

I have Google Earth installed so Jax I I can explore the earth. It is great! If you’d like to load a special Antarctica map with all sorts of points already saved, visit this site. Make sure you have Google Earth installed already!

Animals of Antarctica for the Montessori Wall Map & Quietbook with Printables

I hope you are enjoying this project as much as I am! I’ve gotten see the maps a few of you have started! If you are sewing along, stop by my Instagram @iolstephanie and leave a comment on one of my photos (I can’t see your photo if it you are private, but I can request to follow you temporarily if you leave a comment about it) or share photos on Facebook. You can also email me.

It’s not even slightly Montessori Monday still, but I hope you’ll check out the other great links!

Montessori Monday

Montessori CVC Word Match Printables

Montessori CVC Word Match Printables

Today I am sharing a little word game I made for Jax’s Montessori language lessons. We have been working on “pink series” words – CVC (consonant-vowel-consonant) that can be read phonetically with soft vowels. (There are some exceptions, like egg and ant, but the pink series sticks to the soft vowel sounds as a start.)

Montessori CVC Word Match Printables  Montessori CVC Word Match Printables

As we’ve been working on these kind of words for a little while, Jax could sight read at least a third. Little smarty pants! But the rest he sounded out, and I helped him blend the sounds.

Montessori CVC Word Match Printables

The free printable includes: 20 word cards to match a Montessori movable alphabet set (we have this one), 20 illustrations drawn by me, and 20 word cards in D’nealian handwriting font (they have a set like that too.) So far, I have printed and assembled the pictures and colored text cards. I’ll be adding the handwriting cards soon.

This is Jax's movable alphabet set.

This is Jax’s movable alphabet set.

Montessori CVC Word Match Printables  Montessori CVC Word Match Printables

To make these cards, I printed and cut them out. I cut 2″ squares of pink construction paper and used a dab of glue stick to attach them. Then I ran them through my laminator and cut them out. Make sure to trim our corners if you laminate – they get sharp!

Jax paused to tell me "w" looks like an upside-down "m"...

Jax paused to tell me “w” looks like an upside-down “m”…

Jax was so excited to play this “game” that he couldn’t sit still! I had him choose a word card, then read it and choose the matching picture. (If you want to add a control of error – self-correction – you could make your picture cards double-sided.) He then chose to use his movable alphabet to copy the word.

When he got to the word “cup”, he realized I drew the tiny cup he has in his current language object basket (tiny objects used to represent words in our language studies.) He then changed the game to include finding the right objects.

A quick update! Later in the day we played outside with chalk. I wrote all the words for him to hop on and read as a review. Before bed, we played the game again, this time, spinning the basket to pick a word!

Montessori CVC Word Match Printables

Montessori CVC Word Match Printables

I’ll need to get more miniatures, but we had a lot of them!

IMontessori CVC Word Match Printables

Please enjoy this free printable! I plan to add more language materials to share as Jax needs them.

Montessori CVC Word Match Printables

Please check out Montessori Monday for more fresh homeschool ideas! Link & Learn is great too!

Montessori Monday