In working with the materials, the children take things apart, put them back together, and think about what they do. This gives them practice in the highest thinking skills of analysis, synthesis, and evaluation. It leads to mature questioning, research and true creativity when they put things back together in new ways. The youngest children in the environment catch the enthusiasm of the older ones as they make their discoveries and reach toward the more sophisticated materials, all the while enjoying their own pursuits and “games.”
Children from birth to age six are in their “sensitive period” for exploring the world through their senses. Provide children with many opportunities to make sensorial connections in the classroom or home. By our careful selection of items of different textures, colors, sizes, and geometric shapes, children will discover relationship and exclaim, “This bolt is hexagonal. This button is rough. The cinnamon box smells sweet. The cymbals are loud.” Sensorial experiences indirectly prepare children for future exploration of languages, mathematics, geometry, art, and music.
The Primary aged child possesses a remarkable ability to experience and absorb the world. We believe that the years from three to six are the most critical period for nurturing a child’s natural curiosity and for laying the foundation for all future development.
This series of cubes develops visual discrimination of size in three dimensions. Exploration with this material prepares the child for mathematical concepts in the decimal system, geometry and volume.
“The special importance of the sense of hearing comes from the fact that it is the sense organ connected with speech, therefore, to train the child’s attention to follow sounds and noises which are produced in the environment, to recognize them and to discriminate between them is to prepare his attention to follow more accurately the sounds of articulate language!” M Montessori
Sensorial Materials allow for individual work and repetition, and allows children to classify their sensorial impressions in an organized, orderly, and scientific manner. They have a built in control of error, which builds in the child the habit of working independently, without fear of making mistakes, becoming comfortable in the fact that errors are essential to the process of learning.
Cube of the Trinomial
The Trinomial Cube is a concrete representation of the algebraic formula (a+b+c)3. The factors of the equation are represented by the cubes and prisms. The primary Montessori child explores the Trinomial cube as a sensorial activity of visual discrimination of color and form. This indirect preparation for algebra prepares the child for the elementary Montessori class.
The education of the senses has, as its aim, the refinement of the differential perception of stimuli by means of repeated exercises…”