Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Tree Activities for Tots & Preschoolers w/ Free Printables

This post contains affiliate links.

Activities about trees were not in our plans for the Fall, but when the child leads, the teacher follows.  This is how it works in the Montessori world anyways.  So I bring you our tree activities!

T is for Tree
Sunshine has LOVED this letter activity.  She's enjoyed rolling out the play dough and placing the roll of play dough where it belongs on the T.  Her favorite part is placing the button leaves on her "tree."

I printed out the "T is for TREE" play dough mat, laminated it, and the activity was ready.  Play dough used in this activity is part of our homemade play dough collection.  The brown play dough is chocolate scented.  Even with the scent, Sunshine was very quick and pleased with herself to declare that the brown play dough roll looked just like poop the first time we completed the activity.  I admit I had the same thought.  Thankfully she moved on and hasn't mentioned it again.

It has been so exciting to finally see Sunshine learning her letters.  Tonight while a commercial was on TV she yelled,

"Look!  It's T for TREE!"  She was so excited.  This is the second incident this week that she's noticed the letter T while doing another activity.  She also remembers M for moon.  Hooray for progress!

Source:  I created the printable for this activity as part of my Tree Activities Printable Pack 1. For your free copy, click on the link at the bottom of this post.

Counting Trees
Sunshine can count to 6 finally!  This week we move on to numbers 7-10.  In this activity Sunshine will select a Montessori Sandpaper Number card, identify the number, trace it, and then count out the number of Safari Ltd Trees to match the number on the card.

Four Seasons Match Up
Trees are a fabulous way to learn about the four seasons.  In this activity Sunshine will match up tree cards to clothing cards. I have written the names of each season on both sets of cards as a control.

Source:  I created the printable for this activity as part of my Tree Activities Printable Pack 1. For your free copy. click on the link at the bottom of this post.

Leaf Match Up w/ Clothespins
Over the years we have built up quite a collection of artificial leaves.  Unlike the other kiddos, Sunshine hasn't had much of a chance to work with them.  In this activity Sunshine will find the matching leaves.  She will need to study both the color and shape.  Once she finds a match she will use the clothespins provided to keep them together.  Sunshine loves working with Clothespins.  I love the fine motor practice they provide.

Life Cycle of a Plant
Sunshine isn't quite ready to understand the vocabulary surrounding the life cycle of a plant, but she is ready to sequence plants according to size.  That's exactly what she's doing this week, practicing the vocabulary words small, big, bigger, and biggest.  She is delighted when she puts them in order and can see that she's right.

The life cycle of a plant manipulatives in the activity above were sent to me as part of the Shouts and Sprouts Kit from Montessori By Mom.  
Now, before I even go into my review of this fabulous kit, I want to be honest with you.  Montessori By Mom Kits are all over the Montessori blog world right now and have been for quite some time.  When I first saw a kit on another blog and went to the site, I was shocked at how expensive these kits were.  I knew there was no way I would purchase one, because I don't have extra money floating around each month to make such a purchase.  Last month I was approached by someone who promotes Montessori By Mom kits.  She offered me a free kit in exchange for a review.  I definitely wasn't going to turn down a free kit, so I agreed.  At the time I figured it would be a one time thing and I'd be done.  I really wanted the tree puzzle in the kit, so I figured it would be worth it.

My Montessori By Mom Shoots & Sprouts Kit arrived faster than I could have ever expected.  As I opened the box, I couldn't have been more impressed with the professionalism of the company.  The kit came with pamphlets.  The Montessori By Mom logo was clearly visible on all packaging etc.  Everything was organized in the packaging. The only complaint I have is that the contents of the sensory bag were not in individual bags and therefore crumbled a bit rubbing against each other during shipping.  Still the products were in great shape.

As I examined all of the materials in the kit, I realized there was ABSOLUTELY NO WAY I could have purchased everything for even double the price of what each kit costs.  I shop on Amazon and at local craft stores all the time.  To purchase all the items separately I'd be paying well over $100 and have a ton of left over sensory bags, moss, etc. that I'd have no need for.

The quality of the Montessori By Mom products is top notch.  Dinomite is in love with the magnifying glass, commenting it's the best one we've ever had.  (We've definitely gone through a few over the years.)  All of the kiddos are in love with the tree puzzle and the natural sensory items in the kit.  I can't wait to grow our plants and use the sensory items that came with the bag in the Spring, during a unit we have planned for that time.  Meanwhile I've used the bag and magnifying glass provided in the kit for other units already.

For a person who was initially very skeptical of Montessori By Mom, I have now fallen in love with the company and their products.  I will definitely be budgeting money for new kits.  There are a few that I think would make perfect gifts for the kiddos.  Not only will I be purchasing items, but I've decided to become an affiliate for the company.  I love it that much!  Not convinced yet?  Take a look at Sunshine's last activity.

 Parts of a Tree
Sunshine isn't quite ready to put this tree puzzle together by herself, but she is ready to learn about the parts of the tree.  For this activity she will remove pieces from the puzzle and sort them by part.
When finished, she is welcome to help Mommy or Daddy put the puzzle back together.  She has enjoyed helping everyday and loves the teamwork aspect of putting her work away.

Source: The free printable for this activity can be found at Trillium Montessori.  As mentioned above, the puzzle for this activity is part of the Shoots & Sprouts Kit from Montessori By Mom.

The Montessori tree puzzle is fabulous work for little ones and the whole reason I requested the kit I did for this review.  There are so many variations to the activity to keep it in use for years to come.  If you feel you're not clever enough to come up with ideas on your own, Montessori By Mom provides video tutorials for each kit and item included.  They are amazing!  Seriously, this company provides you with everything you need to provide a fabulous Montessori education to your children at home or school.

To celebrate my new found love, I'd like to offer $10 off every subscription purchased through Every Star Is Different for four days only!  Starting today, Wednesday, October 7, 2015 through Saturday, October 10, 2015, enter this code:  AFFEVST when you purchase your subscription from Montessori By Mom.  I promise it's worth it!  My children second that.  They've already picked out kits to put on their wish lists.  Lol.  Now, it's time for me to choose which kit I'd like next...  There are so many to choose from!

For those interested in the free printables for activities included in this post, click on the link below:

I hope everyone has a fabulous week!


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