Monday, 20 October 2014

DIY Montessori Sound Cylinders

When I first embarked on my journey into Montessori learning, I was a little overwhelmed at the range - and price- of the 'essential' equipment required.

The more I read and explored, the more I discovered other parents who, like me, were keen on implementing Montessori approaches in their home and were finding ways to do it without spending a lot of money. And there are a lot of good ideas out there!

Another Montessori activity that I've DIYed are these sound cylinders.
A traditional sound cylinder is wooden or opaque and filled with a substance that makes a sound when shaken. They are presented in pairs (for example, a set of six pairs) that contain the same substances but the cylinders are marked with different colour.

The purpose of the activity is to shake a cylinder of one colour, then shake the cylinders of the other colour until you've found the two cylinders that make the same sound.

When I first set this activity up (it was a while ago too- how little does Rohan look in these photos?), the only containers I could find with tight fitting lids were clear. These are Decor brand mini-snack containers from the grocery store.

I do intend, at some stage, to make them opaque but for now they are working really well.

I have filled each pair with the following - pasta, popping corn, rice, dried beans, barley and sand.
Early on (these photos were taken last October when Rohan was 22 months old) we'd shake and match using the materials inside to help us talk about the sound and what was making it.
Now that he's older (2 years and 10 months), I hide one set of containers behind my back and shake one at a time. He then tries to match them by shaking the second set in front of him. When he thinks he's got it, I show him the cylinder and he can use the visual clue to self-correct his answer.

I think I'll look at concealing the insides the next time I present them. Any ideas on painting/covering these containers?

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