Sometimes we get in a rut around here. You know those days (weeks) where you are doing a less than stellar job of really paying attention, really observing? I’m lucky enough to have a small group of local friends who inspire me to be the best version of myself during those times, and our play date over at Anna’s house was just what I needed after Christmas to help me get over my holiday mental block. It was at our friends house, in all of it’s Montessori glory, that I was inspired to delve deeper into my son’s apparent interest in exploring, cracking, and eating nuts.
Enter project-based learning: NUTS!
We purchased a Wood Mushroom Nutcracker, bought a bag of mixed nuts, and began our journey. After some initial cracking and eating, my son and I did some research on each nut, and printed out the pictures he found. My plan was to cut everything out and laminate them, but HIS plan was to put them all out on the table to sort and match…..and crack and eat….immediately.
EVEN DADDY PLAYED/LEARNED
MATCHING THE NUTS TO THEIR PICTURES
A few days and an impromptu mini-vacation to Sea World later, our learning through play continued. I took the pictures that my son printed out and laminated them. Each bundle has the name of the nut along with a picture of the tree it comes from, the leaves of the tree, the nut in it’s shell, and the nut out of it’s shell. I used ring binders to hold each bundle together.
INVITATION TO PLAY/LEARN
ALMONDS ARE HIS FAVORITE
I asked him if he would like to use some sheets to practice his writing and answer these questions. He said “yes, when Daddy goes back to work”. Apparently there is a no writing rule on Daddy’s days off.
We even used our digital microscope to look at the nuts. So cool!!
MAGNIFIED ALMOND SHELL
I’m confident this project is not over, so stay tuned for more.
~ AK (MESE, MECD)