We typically begin each year thoroughly reviewing and studying common land and water forms using Montessori materials. One Fun Friday in October, the students explored these land and water forms using a variety of different materials to stimulate multiple senses. According to the Montessori philosophy, when children are exposed to a variety of sensorial experiences, the intellectual senses are developed encouraging the child's ability to observe and compare with precision. In small groups, students rotated through Centers to observe, match, sketch and label the basic opposing land/water forms using the "3D" Landforms. We then mixed ingredients in small groups to make blue and brown Salt Dough which later became a texture for building "land" and "water" on our own Earth Plate. The students designed their own plate using several of the land or water forms studied in class. Through all of this work, our hope is that the children are building upon their environmental awareness to develop an appreciation for the beautiful world that is around all around us!
Scroll down for more photos and a DIY Salt Dough Recipe!
DIY: Make Salt Dough AT HOME!
Below is the recipe used in school. We started with a 1:1 ratio of Salt to Flour. There are other variations found on the Web. You may find that you need to add more or less of each ingredient to find the perfect, non-stick consistency. Good luck!
Ingredients and Materials Needed:
1 cup Salt
1 cup Flour
1 cup Warm Water
Several drops of Food Coloring (Optional)
Spoon for mixing
1. Add drops of food coloring to the warm water to your liking.
2. Pour the warm water into the large bowl.
3. Slowly stir in the salt.
4. Slowly stir in the flour. Once the flour is all poured in, notice the consistency. If it is too watery, add more flour.
5. Use your hands to knead the dough. Keep adding flour until the dough is dry enough to the touch.
6. Build. Explore. Play. Most importantly, have fun!
7. P.S. Don't forget to help Moms and Dads with clean up!
It's a simple, easy craft for a rainy weekend or a possibly snow day this upcoming winter. Parents, please comment on our blog and share photos if you try at home!
Here are a few snapshots of an afternoon on the rug exploring Alphabetical Order, Word Building and the reinforcement of Letter/Sound Connections!