Practical Life: Care of plants

At St Andrew’s Montessori we take great pleasure in teaching children how to care for the environment. We incorporate a child’s innate desire to help and feel purposeful into many of our practical life activities, to both inspire them and guide the learning process.

Caring for plants is something we do at school but is also an activity that can transition into your home context. Watering a plant might sound like something incredibly simple…and it is but it is also an amazing opportunity for conversation and learning – as demonstrated in the below tutorial by My Montessori Works:

To initiate spontaneity and independence in this particular activity, children are provided with a tray prepared with a child-sized watering can and a sponge (encouraging responsibility for cleaning up after watering the plant). You might like to include a spray bottle for misting plants as well as any other elements necessary for your plant care routine at home. In the tutorial, little signs saying “I have been watered” are included on the tray, to be placed into the plant so that you will know what plants have been watered – a great idea! The tray should also be easily accessible.

One of the hindrances to allowing our children to water plants at home is the mess! I am sure many of us envision water and soil all over the place. And truthfully, this might happen but allowing them the space to make a mistake and learn from it is precious. Do a demonstration for them – use only some of the water in the can and show them how the plant/soil absorbs the water. And here’s where the lesson comes in: explain that every living thing needs water but not too much. In this instance, too much water will hurt the plant. Then once the plant has had enough water, clean up the drips and put in your ‘watered’ sign.

Your children will copy what you have shown them and will enjoy doing their small part to look after our earth.
If you’d like further information about this tutorial, feel free to contact us at info@saintandrewsmontessori.com. We’re happy to answer any questions.

Image by Littletigergrowingup.blogspot.com