Montessori Sensorial Overview - Scope and Sequence
Overview of the Primary Montessori Sensorial Program
Since a child naturally
uses all his powers of observation during his early years, Dr.
Montessori felt this was the ideal time to give the child equipment
which would sharpen his senses and enable him to understand the many
impressions he receives through them.
The sensorial materials in
the Montessori classroom help the child to become aware of details by
offering her, at first, strongly contrasted sensations such as red and
blue, and then variously graded sensations such as shades of blue.
The material enables her to know what is red and what is blue, then to
understand the abstraction of blueness, and finally the abstraction of
Isolation of Quality
Each of the sensorial materials isolates one
defining quality such as color, weight, shape, texture, size, sound,
smell, etc. The equipment emphasizes this one particular quality by
eliminating or minimizing other differences. Thus, the sound boxes are
all the same size, shape, color, and texture; they differ only in the
sounds made when a child shakes them.
It is possible for
adults, as well as children, to receive any number of sensory
impressions and be none the richer. Sense impressions are not enough by
themselves; the mind needs education and training to be able to
discriminate and appreciate. Montessori materials help the child to
distinguish, to categorize, and to relate new information to what he
already knows. Dr. Montessori believed that this process is the
beginning of conscious knowledge. It is brought about by the
intelligence working in a concentrated way on the impressions given by
Sensorial materials are self-correcting to
allow independent use, they foster muscular development which
lays the foundation for writing skills, and they are produced to precise
metric tolerances. Correct terminology (binomial cube, isosceles
triangle) and mathematically exact relationships enrich the child's
experience so that abstract concepts may attach to familiar reality. (source unknown)
Montessori Sensorial Activities
beginning you must observe the child, know what kind of activities they
are drawn to, what they shy away from, and understand their current
skills and abilities. Not all children will be
capable of each activity in the order it is shown below. The order below
is a guideline only - not a steadfast rule. You might choose to present
a cylinder block, color tablets Box 1, and the touch boards within a
day or two (depending on your classroom situation), then move on to the
pink tower if your child is showing interest. A child may progress more
rapidly through one area of the sensorial materials than the others.
is possible to skip over certain activities as long as the next
activity the child chooses does not require knowledge/skill that the
child does not yet have. The key is to follow the child and offer
appropriate activities according to their abilities. The goal is always
to set the child up for success. That's not to say that the child won't
have to work through an activity and repeat it over and over again
before being successful. The child needs to be adequately prepared for
the activity, physically and mentally.
If you are homeschooling your child and wish to have a little
more theory, direction on the presentation, and suggested age of when to
present the Sensorial materials you can purchase our Sensorial Teaching Manual.