Montessori's approach to language development is fascinating, intriguing, and, well, effective. If you are looking for insight into Montessori writing development, you have landed in the right place. Welcome.
“Genius is eternal patience.” ~ Michelangelo
This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Montessori Outlet. All opinions are 100% mine.
Montessori metal insets are one of my all-time favorite Montessori materials. They are by far the most effective I have come across in teaching my son hand coordination to prepare him for writing.
The insets come in the shapes of a square, triangle, circle, rectangle, oval, trapezoid, pentagon, curvilinear triangle, and quatrefoil. They present the child with a wide variety of hand movements to enhance work on control and steadiness while writing left to right. The child will also eventually learn to make a continuous stroke.
The best part is that the insets work on a wide variety of skills. This work primarily focuses on the development of Montessori writing skills, of course. In addition to that, art and math skills are also inherent to the metal inserts as children are making designs and patterns with the shapes. By the way, the insets are the same size as the shapes found in the geometric cabinet.
Keep in mind, though, that the work with metal insets should not be rushed by the adult or the child.
Sequence of Montessori Writing Development with Metal Inserts
There are fairly specific presentations with Montessori metal insets. Here is the approach I took with my son, along with some variations.
Introduce the insets
Present each inset to the child, picking up the inset with a three finger grip, tracing the insets with the dominant index finger, then returning the inset to its template. If the child wants to continue that day, great. If not, put the work aside for another presentation.
Trace with a pencil
The next time I brought the insets out, I introduced the tracing paper and colored pencils. We worked slowly together tracing most of the shapes. The work is meant to be done slowly, so when you introduce the work to your child be sure to emphasize that slowness and steadiness. Tracing gives the child an opportunity to learn how to grip and guide a pencil, and feel the pressure on the pencil while writing.
Children can make designs on their own.
Prepare a few simple designs and ask the child to identify the shapes used to make the design.
Prepare a few simple designs and ask the child to reproduce the design.
My favorite part of this work is the use of the insets and colored pencils to create beautiful designs. This part of the work comes after a child has worked with the insets for a bit.
The wait and work is worth it. When my son was 3.5 years old, he was deep into the sensitive period for reading and writing. Observing him was beautiful. Watching him unfold into his magical self has always been inspiring and motivating.
I remember thinking, when he was about 2.5 years old: “I must be doing something wrong,” because he wasn't interested in my presentations or the materials. He needed to be ready. Patience is truly a virtue, my friends, please keep that in mind on your Montessori journey.
Where are your children or students in their Montessori writing development? What do you think of these metal insets?
Thank you for reading today. I hope that you found this post helpful to you in your Montessori journey. Please take the time to visit Montessori Outlet to browse their affordable Montessori products for your school, classroom or home school. I have been extraordinarily pleased with the selection and quality of materials. The customer service is also top notch.
A note about our Sponsor, Montessori Outlet:
Montessori Outlet offers premium quality at outlet prices. Old traditions meet new technology is a key message that resonates with me. They use authentic Nienhuis blueprints to produce affordable Montessori materials for classrooms and home learning environments. I am proud to be partnering with them. Definitely check out their line of Montessori products. They offer great deals on shipping too. You will be happy that you spent the time.