Array Animal Size-Sorting Kids Activity | Montessori From The Heart

## SafariLtd animal size sorting is an effective Montessori sensorial activity to help children develop spatial awareness, critical reasoning, and problem-solving skills.

Sorting animals by size to practice classifying, soring, discriminating, and grouping is fun an incredibly effective to practice many essential skills. Most importantly, during this Animal Size-Sorting hands-on kids activity, your little one is developing hand-eye coordination, fine motor control, dexterity, spatial awareness, and more! They are also developing their language skills by sorting into large, medium, and small.

## Why Are We Googling ‘kindergarten readiness’?

Why is sorting so important, and why is everyone googling “kindergarten readiness”? Well, with the recent adoption of the Common Core State Standards, your kindergartner must know and do the following:

Analyze and compare two-and three-dimensional shapes, in different size and orientations, using informal language to describe their similarities, differences, parts (e.g., number of sides and vertices/”corners”) and other attributes (e.g., having sides of equal length).

(CCSS.MATH.CONTENT.K.G.B.4.)

Oh wow! That is a lot! But, we can introduce all those skills that must be mastered by the age of five or six by starting with simple concrete invitations to sort early on!

For example, by 16 months, your toddler might be able to sort objects by size, color, or shape, which will help with early maths concepts. And household items or real-life replica figurines of various sizes are great for advancing such a skill.

## Why Sorting Is So Important

When children sort objects, they set them apart according to differences and similarities. For example, when the skill of comparing is triggered, a child has to determine whether an item has more, the same or less of that characteristic. Thus, when children engaged in classifying and sorting activities, they develop a range of reasoning skills while building a strong foundation for later problem-solving and critical thinking.

Besides, sorting is a timeless activity since we sort clothing and laundry, dishes and utensils, groceries and food, etc. But sorting is a learned skill! Although naturally, sorting exercises attract children who have an innate desire to make sense of their world and create order, sorting is still mastered with practice. For example, a Montessori sensorial sorting activity utilizes the abovementioned child’s natural inclination, however, it takes sorting a step further by teaching a child to organize and sort using all of the senses while working on careful discrimination.

So, with these easy-to-set-up animals size sort DIYs, your child will learn that things are similar and different as well as that objects can belong and be organized into specific groups. Besides, your little one can play safely as all of Safari Ltd products are non-toxic and BPA-free! (Hooray to companies that put the environment and our health first!) Most importantly, the setup should be minimal, and you can use items or toys readily available.

## Supplies

##### Here is a list of materials you will need for this Montessori Sensorial Sorting Activity:
1.  *Safari Ltd figurines
2. recycled cardboard
3. a marker

First, offer your child to identify and name each SafariLtd animal while presenting an opportunity to enrich the vocabulary. Thereafter, invite your child to sort by size and place that animal in a correct group (LARGE, MEDIUM, or SMALL) relative to other animals. Size sorting step also promotes fine motor control and spatial awareness. Proceed until all the animals were sorted.

## Skills Mastered By Sorting

### Hand-eye coordination

Hand-eye coordination is the ability to coordinate the information received through the eyes to control, guide, and direct the hands in the accomplishment of a given task.

### Fine motor control

When children practice small muscle hand control by manipulating, tonging, pinching, transferring, threading, etc, they develop the strength, dexterity, and control needed to manipulate many everyday items such as a pencil, spoon, button, scissors, zippers, and more … “He does it with his hands, by experience, first in play and then through work. The hands are the instruments of man’s intelligence.” ~ Dr. Maria Montessori. The Absorbent Mind.

### Dexterity

Children refine dexterity through these exercises, as thet are perfecting skills and ease in using their hands.

### Spatial awareness

(Think of it as a DIY puzzle.) By understanding the positioning of objects in relation to oneself in that given space, children understand the relationship of these objects when there is a change of position.

### Problem-Solving Skills

Problem-solving skills help us think analytically (‘Hmm, where shall I place this item?’), thus advancing a child’s reasoning abilities.

Moreover, though sorting, children are refining matching, sorting and classifying and language development.

## Why Spatial Awareness Is Important

Spatial Awareness is important during early years because our visual and tactile perception consists of understanding how objects are situated in space. Gaining an understanding of the attributes of those objects, such as relative size, which can be a distinguishing characteristic, is a key to mastering this important skill. Classifying objects into categories allows children to mentally and physically organize things in their world.

Please note that you can introduce this activity to a toddler as young as a year-and-a-half since a developmental milestone to learn to CLASSIFY objects emerges at about 18 months when your toddler is using brainpower to sort favorite toys!

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## Safari Ltd Toys That Teach:

Importantly, remember that children are learning by doing! Most importantly, they cannot learn what they have not been given a chance to experience! As such, children need to TOUCH, MANIPULATE, EXPLORE, and INVESTIGATE! And Safari Ltd TOOBs are to the rescue since they are perfect for sorting, classifying and transferring! Besides, these amazingly detailed hand-painted replicas are made from quality phthalates and lead-FREE, safe materials. So, allow your children to SAFELY explore the world’s animals through simple and fun educational invitations to play and learn! And keep in mind, ‘what the hand does, the mind remembers!’ So, provide your child with ample opportunities for fun tactile sensory invitations to play, and offer simultaneous multi-sensorial stimulations to explore and learn to guarantee your child’s brain agility!

With the highest regard, this is a sponsored post with Safari Ltd. All opinions are my own and from the heart! Besides, I am so excited to collaborate with this amazing team that brings Toys That Teach to our children! You can read more about Safari Ltd ’s mission of “educating children about the importance of nature and its conservation through the joy of play” here.