Apple serving Montessori Practical Life Activity for preschoolers and kindergartners promotes fine and gross motor control, coordination, and independence.
Practical Life Activities are enjoyed by toddlers, preschoolers, and kindergartners throughout the year. Montessori apple serving activity is a favorite during the entire year and especially during autumn when apples are in abundance. During this work, a child gets to practice gross and fine motor skills, coordination, and problem-solving skills. You would initially show a presentation to a child from the beginning to the end and then invite your child to complete the cycle of the activity. Most importantly, making and serving a snack of fresh apple slices is a fun way to apply new skills and build confidence. “I can do it myself!” says a proud child while serving the snack and utilizing a new Grace and Courtesy lesson.
Montessori Apple Serving Activity
YOU’LL NEED FOR Montessori Apple Serving Activity
- a tray (a mat optional)
- a child apron ~ ours was a custom order (or shop similar HERE)
- apple slicer/corer
- blunt-tipped knife or serrated plastic HERE and serrated steel HERE (see wooden hand knife HERE)
- a plate
- a cutting board
- a towel
- a sponge (optional)
Independence is at the core of Montessori education. A child is invited to complete the entire cycle of activity: from putting on an apron to cleaning up and returning the activity back to the shelf. When choosing an apron, make sure it does not have ties. Do choose an apron with elastic or velcro for easier fastening. We want a child to feel a sense of success when they can put on an apron independently. Please remember that offering tools or materials a child is not yet able to master will only cause frustration and disappointment.
Montessori Nomenclature cards
You can also take this opportunity and discuss the Life Cycle of the Apple with Montessori 3 Part Cards. (Read details HERE on how to introduce Montessori Nomenclature cards.)
After a child matches the picture to a control card, invite your child to match the label. Although Adrain cannot read yet, he can visually match the label to the control card.
Next, invite your child to slice an apple! Please remove the skin of an apple, before offering your child to slice it. Otherwise, hard and slippery skin makes it very hard for a toddler to pierce it. This way, a little wiggling with an apple slicer gets the job of slicing done.
Trust me, even the pickiest eater will gladly try the fruits of his/her labor!
You can also offer a child a hand chopper to cut an apple wedge into smaller pieces.
Finally, invite your child to serve the apple slices. Please remind that if anyone is at the table, a child should offer the first slice to another.
After the activity is complete, invite a child to clean everything up and return the activity back to the shelf.
Montessori Practical Life Activities
PRACTICAL LIFE ACTIVITIES (PLA) include life skills to help develop independence, coordination, concentration, self-control, self-awareness, and confidence, and include:
- care of self (food preparation, dressing, washing)
- care of the environment (cleaning, gardening, care of pets, environmentalism)
- grace and courtesy (greetings, manners, social interactions)
- control of movement (refining movements, walking the line, moving quietly)
Montessori Apple Serving Activity falls under the care of self (food preparation) and grace and courtesy.
Practical Life: The Soul of the Montessori Classroom
Any child who is self-sufficient, who can tie his shoes, dress or undress himself, reflects in his joy and sense of achievement the image of human dignity, which is derived from a sense of independence.—Maria Montessori, The Child in the Family
Maria Montessori observed that children are naturally curious, and they seek to participate in daily life activities they see all around them. Thus, Dr Maria Montessori developed the Practical Life exercises to give children such an opportunity to practice important skills, gain independence, and become fully functional members of their families and community. Practical Life exercises play a very important role in a child’s social, emotional, and academic development, providing a foundation for confidence and success.
Most importantly, PLA help children develop fine and gross motor skills, refining both large and small muscle coordination. A child may repeat a particular exercise over and over, perfecting the movements while developing stamina, patience, and concentration. Pediatric neuropsychologist Steven Hughes found that children’s strongest link to their brains is their hands, noting that repeated motor movements develop the pathways in the brain that help children learn. “What the hand does, the mind remembers!” is a Montessori motto that we shall always remember!
Happy Apple Serving!
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Please, always supervise your child!
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