Montessori - Practical Life I - Spooning pasta

Quite a few people have asked me lately about teaching a preschooler at home - how do I do it?
I decided to share a series of short posts about the first steps in homeschooling a 3-year-old.
It is a third child of this age that I will be teaching at home and by now I have most of the materials already prepared. This makes a big difference as I don't have to spend much time searching, printing, writing, cutting and laminating many of the materials I need to use, I just take them out of the storage, find a place on a shelf and voila! the material is ready.

First Practical Life exercise I want to show you is
spooning pasta

  • tray
  • two identical bowls
  • spoon
  • fine uncooked pasta
The objective of this work is to simply spoon the pasta from one bowl to the other (place the bowl with pasta on the right side for a right handed child and on the left for left handed). It sounds easy, right? Well it usually takes a few tries for the little hands to get it right. You may want to start with larger pasta and a bigger spoon and then change it to smaller pasta - rice - sand/salt.
Remember to tell your child that he is not supposed to eat the 'work'! Ania kept repeating to herself:麵還沒有煮好 - pasta is not cooked.

Carrying the work to the table is not an easy task
(as you will see later).

Tilting the bowl a bit to get all the pasta into the spoon...

... or simply pouring the last bits of pasta from one bowl to the other.

Oh-oh! The tray tipped over and ... all the pasta spilled on the floor.
Now it's time to clean it all up.