Tuesday, May 19, 2009

As happy as a 3 - 6 year old!

Yippee! I got my pesky hands on Colour Box #3 when I had the opportunity to do Journey and Discovery at a Montessori school a few weeks back. I had actually done J+D with them a year or more ago but wanted T to come along & get a better feel for why I'm so obsessed (really?!) with Montessori.

This was my first opportunity to use any of the colour boxes. I was as happy as a pig in mud - or, a 3-6 year old :) After looking at them/reading about them etc. etc. for so long it was just so cool.

I was particularly amazed at how close some of the shades are & that certain colours were trickier than others for me. The school principal agreed on that point though interestingly the colours he found hardest weren't mine.

Btw, Journey and Discovery is a 2-part parents event. It's a program designed by an American woman called Barbara Gordon & is run at many schools around the world. The first part of the program, which is called Journey, starts the evening prior to the 'Discovery' day.

During Journey, after an introduction & discussion you are invited to walk *silently* through each of the different-age learning environments. You are asked to observe consider the differences and similarities of each classroom, noting the materials, layouts and sequences. This is a truly *sensorial* experience with no need for conversation or discussion. The evening concludes with a final group discussion.

The second part of the program is called Discovery and takes place the next morning. You are invited to work with a selection of materials from each environment, which have been specially set up in one classroom. Instructions for the use of each activity are printed out & placed by the work so that all of the parents can immediately sit down & start working without any introduction (unlike the children).  During this time, the teachers will guide you just as they would  guide the child/ren in class. This is designed to recreate for the adult the experience of being a Montessori child.

This time was particularly fun as we were invited to a presentation! It was on using the Fraction Skittles in long division. Fun. Fun. Fun. :)

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Comments :


  1. That's the kind of experience I would love to have to learn about Montessori! Sounds great!

    About arranging hues... I have a background in art and design and didn't realise how differently people (without any kind of colour blindness) saw colours until me and some of my freinds did a similar hue test online. It was this one, and although I saw no difficulty in it and got a full score without having to put much effort in, lots of people did and with specific different colours. My husband struggled with the green/blues.

    Really interesting! Is it just down to the biology of the arrangement and proportions of the different cones in an individual's eyes, or is it partly down to the brain having had practice being used a lot for this sort of task?

  2. I've never heard of that program and will be checking to see if it's something our school does. If not, thanks for sharing- sounds very beneficial to get parents more engaged.

  3. Alycia - It really is a wonderful experience (can you tell i like it?! lol :) and at the school i went to *both* parents *must* take the class at some stage - i think that you have to agree to it when you enroll your child. I love that they think it's that important. Plus, they were generous enough to let us (as potential future parents at the school) come along to!

    Kitten Muffin - I was wondering about what it is too... is it nature or nurture?

    My background is in design too (maybe that's why I love your blog so much!) & had never noticed this before, I so love the idea of children as young as 3 learning to differentiate these subtleties. How lucky for them!

  4. How do you think this would work in a school with only one age group? Sounds like a wonderful idea!!

  5. wow! that sounds amazing. Ill have to see if they have any down here in the South of Oz.

    Yes - Im obsessed too. LOL!!!


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