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Daily Routine of a Montessori Toddler At Home

Daily routine of a Montessori toddler

Daily Routine of a Montessori Toddler At Home

I often get people asking what the daily routine of a Montessori kid looks like for us, but usually by people who have younger children. I was looking through my personal blog for something the other day and found a post about our typical day. This was before Ebi-kun has started kindy, so he would be 3 years old….
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We try to have Montessori mornings three times a week, usually Monday, Wednesday and Friday. By Montessori mornings, I mean we specifically work with the Montessori materials and try and get into that 3 hour cycle. Our Montessori shelves are set up upstairs. Recently we haven’t been doing it up there because it is too cold so we now go up and choose which thing he wants to work with and will help him bring it downstairs, it is a bit of a faff but is working OK.

Heads up – there are a couple of affiliate links included in the post, that means if you buy something through the link I will get a small percentage of the sale, at no cost to you.
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This is what the daily routine of a Montessori toddler looks like for us…

What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod

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6.20am

We get up. Have breakfast, get washed and dressed and do the house jobs (Ebi-kun helps with the dishwasher and the laundry).

One of the handiest things I have bought is a dual height step like this one, it’s light enough to be picked up and moved around and will grow with him. (I even use it myself because I’m not very tall and can’t reach the top shelves!). This is hands down one of the easiest ways to help the child become independent. We have one in the kitchen and in the bathroom.

dual height step | montessori home | equipment for a montessori home | how to make your home child friendly #montessori #followthechild

7.30am
I check my email and Etsy shop orders and Ebi-kun watches NHK educational programs for a while. (For those who are new to the blog, we are in Japan). This is usually the only TV he watches, many of the kids in the park sing the songs and talk about these programs so I let him watch so he doesn’t feel excluded. English is our home language but I feel it’s important for him to be able to integrate easily. The other show he likes is Curious George but we watch that in English.

Once the program has finished he decides what to play with, sometimes it’s  game involving jumping off the sofa! But more often he will sit and ‘read’ this boy loves his books! You can follow more about his story to becoming a fluent reader in this podcast.
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9.00am
Start the 3-hour cycle. This is different each time, I documented what we did this day…


First, he got out the weighing scales. I picked these up a while ago at a bargain price of 500 yen, since they are wood I was very chuffed but they didn’t come with weights so I made some out of salt dough, they are not accurate but work well enough. At the Montessori Farm School we had a set like this beam weighing scale which was lovely and much better!

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This is the first time he has worked with this set and I don’t think he really got the concept of weights so I just stuck with heavy, light and the same. He got that and spent some time experimenting with the scales – as well as trying to pull them apart to see how they work!

He also tried putting other things on the scales too, he was occupied with these for almost an hour.
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using the scales montessori. What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod

.9.55am

Tidy up the scales work then prepared and ate his snack. This morning it was sliced banana and milk to drink. He does everything himself and has a shelf with all that he needs for snack time including chopping board and cutlery/plates etc. I love this part of the 3 hour period, not only is he learning to be independent but also the important aspect of cleaning up after a meal!

I bought all his equipment for the ¥100 store Daiso (like the dollar store). They have a great selection of small plates, his cup is an espresso cup.

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10.15am

Clean up. Tidy everything away and wipe down the table. He puts his dirty dishes either in the dishwasher or next to the sink the kitchen isn’t big enough for a learning tower. He is getting quite good at loading the dishwasher, remembering to put things in the right place rather than haphazard and upside down.
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Preparing his own snack. What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod

10.30am

Took out the sound pouches and worked through about 15 of them then he decided he had enough. I have a tutorial on how I made these HERE. He was matching the objects with the Sandpaper Letters (Tutorial on how to make them HERE and how to present them HERE). He is very much in a language phase at the moment, he is already reading 3 letter words but still love the sound pouch work too.

Next time I will introduce the moveable alphabet with some of the sound pouch objects, the ones that are simple phonic words.

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Montessori sound pouches What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod

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11.05am 

Put the sound pouches away and got out the balance game, this is not strictly Montessori but is great for dexterity and pincer muscle exercise. He was much better at taking turns today and got excited when one of us was “champion” he had to do a dance no matter who won.

He really got into it and played with this for a long time, he went mad when I had to get up to go to the toilet hahaha. For those who have asked, I got this in Muji but I don’t think it’s available anymore but there are similar ones available on Amazon.

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balance game. What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod

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11.45am

Put the balance game away and got out metal insets. He worked with this by himself whilst I started to prepare lunch. He finished up for lunch about 12.15pm.

This activity is clearly a favourite at the moment, he gets it out almost every day and we get through a LOT of paper.

Top Tip – origami paper is the perfect size for this and here it is cheap, I usually get this one from Daiso so win-win. The metal insets we have are these ones, this is one of the pieces of equipment that I am happy to have invested in.

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Montessori metal insets. What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod

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12.30pm
Lunch. He helps set the table whilst I prepared the food.
Sometimes he will help prepare the food too but today he was engrossed in his work so I left him to it. Lunch tends to be a relaxed affair and I will listen to a podcast or two over lunch.

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1.30pm
After lunch he takes a nap, and is currently curled up on the sofa, he looks so cosy and warm, I am half tempted to go and join him but this is my time to do some work. I have some sewing to do and take some product photos whilst the sun is out.

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 3.00pm
After his nap, we usually go outside, either for a walk or down to the park. At the moment he likes to collect petals, leaves and stones. I seem to have an endless collection of them in the bottom of my bag.

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5.00pm
He is ready for his dinner, Ebi-kun is an incredibly slow eater, seriously, I have never met a child that eats so slowly. This is great when we go out for lunch, it’s always a nice relaxed affair, no having to try and keep him entertained whilst I wolf down my food! What this does mean is that I need to have his dinner ready early or he falls asleep when he is eating!

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6.00pm
Time to wind things down, we clean up, and then read some books and talk to my mom on Skype (she is in the UK so it is morning for her). We have books out all the time so often he will just pick one up and start reading. He LOVES books. I read to him in English and daddy reads to him in Japanese.

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 7.00pm
Start the bed and bath routine. It is the Japanese way to have a bath every night and I find it helps the body relax before going to sleep. That said, it sometimes has the opposite effect and ends up in silly water fight madness. He doesn’t like having his hair washed so that is often a bit of a battle but he is getting better, we are practising put his face in the water each day, it’s water on his face that he really hates.

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7.30pm
Story and lights out, he likes to listen to 
Natalie Merchant’s Leave Your Sleep CD as he goes to sleep. It’s a lovely double album, kids music you can actually listen to without going insane.
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Then it is my turn for the bath and to eat dinner. Depending on when my husband is planning on getting home I will either wait for him and eat together or I will eat first. I also have a bath and sneak a couple more hours of work in. Working at night doesn’t suit me, I’m a morning person but sometimes need must, and it won’t be for forever!
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That wraps it up!

This was a pretty typical day up until he started kindergarten when he was 4.  We would stick to this routine during the kindergarten holidays or on random days off unless we had plans to go out. Ebi-kun is now 12 and looking back I can say that although it was hard work being consistent and making sure the work cycle was complete, it was absolutely worth it.

He now puts things away without me asking, will prepare lunch for both of us, cooks meals independently and he has a great study ethic. I never had to bug him to do his homework and rarely have to tell him to tidy his room, so if you are wondering if this Montessori thing is worth the effort, it is, 100% worth it!
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I’m not sure how close our mornings were to a work cycle in a large Montessori school, or how long, on average a child will work with one piece of equipment, each child is different. Somedays he will sit for well over an hour with the same thing, the next day he will get it out for 5 minutes and put it away again. Although I taught for a while at a Montessori school, it was a small class with just 8 kids, one of which was my son, so I have no way to compare with a class of say 30 kids.

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FAQ’s I have added these because this is what I get asked about a lot…
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How long should a child work on one thing?
I think that as long as he/she completes the cycle of returning the equipment to the shelf when he/she has had enough you don’t worry about how long they work with it. I feel sometimes they are just not in the mood or can’t find what they really want to do. (Us adults do that too!)
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Why Not Tuesday and Thursdays?
On Thursday we would go to the bilingual playgroup, it was 40 minutes by train so took up a good chunk of the day. Usually, we would make a full day of it, it was a good chance for me to catch up with other English speaking parents too. And Tuesdays we would often meet friends for a playdate, so we might do some Montessori work and the shelves are open for him to use at any time but we didn’t do the 3-hour cycle.
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Looking for more help with Montessori?

Check out the FREE Montessori Demystified Workshop, which gives you the basics of what Montessori is all about.
I also run Montessori Crash Course with Deb Chitwood (Living Montessori Now) – an online program for parents who want to use Montessori at home but are feeling confused, overwhelmed or just need some extra help.

And if you just want a handy reference for activities to pull together quickly but use the Montessori principles, get a copy of Montessori Inspired Activities For Pre-Schoolers.

What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod“>
What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod“>
What does the daily routine for a Montessori toddler look like? | montessori | 3 hour work cycle | 3 hour work period | Montessori at home | montessori inspired #montessori #montessori home #kaizen #kaizenforkids #3hourworkperiod“>

 

 

Montessori Demystified FREE Workshop

Interested in Montessori but overwhelmed and don’t know where to start?
Started but you are stuck, something isn’t quite right?
Just want to learn more about Montessori to see if it is right for you?

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typical day for a montessori toddler ¥ What does a Montessori child do all day at home? #montessori #dayinthelife #montessoriathome

typical day for a montessori toddler | What does a Montessori child do all day at home? #montessori #dayinthelife #montessoriathome“>
Daily Routine of a Montessori Toddler At Home | montessori | wardolf | homeschooler | toddler | #montessori #homeschool #kaizen“>
Daily Routine of a Montessori Toddler At Home | montessori | wardolf | homeschooler | toddler | #montessori #homeschool #kaizen“>
One Response to "Daily Routine of a Montessori Toddler At Home"
  1. Sarah B says:

    You have no idea how useful this post is for me!
    I have been learning about the Montessori classroom but it feels different at home, I’m never sure if we are doing too much or not enough. I never thought of including snack time in the 3 hour work cycle.
    Thank you again Jo for everything you share and making it all so easy to understand.

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