Balancing the spectrum of ages and phases within this family of mine is the toughest challenge for me, personally, as a mother and an educator.
In addition to our trusted stand-by's of salt dough, thick Lyra colored pencils, picture books, blocks, train tracks, and simple games, I've been adding in some other simple activities to feed the minds and souls of the littlest members of our family.
Here is a basic Montessori activity involving transferring, that all of my children have simply adored right at about this age (2 1/2 years old) and even younger (and older!). It is stunning how much concentration this activity calls out in a young child and the focused delight of taking care of one's spills is just so satisfying.
Watercolor painting is always a favorite activity, and one that all the children eagerly join in on whenever possible. Our painting boards and sturdy brushes make this experience even that much more functional and beautiful.
It has been such a blessing to have solid blocks of time this weeks when all four of the children have sat and painted together in between lessons.
Making bird feeders was the highlight of our weekend as we put to use the empty rolls of paper products that we had saved and covered them with peanut butter and bird seed. The boys were so delighted to put on their boots and coats, trudge out into the cold, damp night air, and help me hang our feeders on the tree branches!
It has often been said, that if the mother is not happy, then the children are not happy. Personally, in my home, in this moment, I am finding it quite the other way around!