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How to Engage Your Kids with the Vibrant Montessori Color Tablets Lesson


Montessori Color Tablets are a sensorial material used in Montessori education to help children develop their visual discrimination and color recognition skills.

The Color Tablets consist of a set of wooden or plastic tablets, each in a different color. The purpose of the Color Tablets is to assist children in refining their ability to perceive and differentiate between various colors, as well as to develop their vocabulary related to colors.

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Montessori Sensorial gives an order to a child’s environment. The materials isolate a specific quality and guide the child to better understand the world by “organizing” all that he is soaking up in his environment.

I have written on Montessori Sensorial philosophy in the past. I hope you take the time to read up on Dr. Montessori’s thoughts. Below is a lesson on the Montessori Color Tablets.

Color Tablets - Montessori Sensorial Lesson

What are Montessori Color Tablets?

The Color Tablets are the 6th material in the sequence following Knobbed Cylinders, the Pink Tower, the Broad Stair, the Red Rods, and the Knobless Cylinders, each building upon developing the child’s Visual Sense.

The material included three boxes with lids containing color tablets:

Box 1 consists of six tablets, a pair of each primary color (red, yellow, blue). These are the most sharply contrasting colors.

Box 2 includes twenty-two tablets, a pair of each of the primary colors, the secondary colors (green, orange, purple), and also pink, brown, black, white, and grey.

Box 3 includes sixty-three tablets; 7 shades of 9 colors: red, yellow, blue, green, orange, purple, brown, pink, and grey.

How do you teach Montessori color tablets?

The Montessori Color Tablets Lesson

Color Tablets - Montessori Sensorial Lesson

Say to the child: “We hold the color tablets by the handles so the colors won’t get dirty.”

  • Carry the box with both hands on each side of the box. Place it in the center of the mat.
  • Use the 3-finger-grip of the left hand on the left corner and the 3-finger-grip of the right hand on the right corner.
  • Lift each tablet from the box and arrange it randomly on the work mat. Once empty, place the box on top of the lid.
Montessori Sensorial - Color Tablets Lesson

Color Tablets Presentation I: Matching the Color Tablets

Color Tablets - Montessori Sensorial Lesson
  • Study the tablets. Move the matching tablet about ¼ inch to the right of the first one.
  • Continue until all pairs have been matched. Check work. Offer the child a turn.
  • Return tablets to the box in pairs, or move on to Presentation II.

Presentation II: Naming the Color Tablets

  • Use the 3-period lesson 
  • “This is red. Can you say red? This is blue. Can you say blue?”
  • Which one is red? Which one is blue?
  • What is this?” Point at red. “What is this?” Then point at blue.
  • Mix them up again. Add the yellow tablets.
  • “This is red. This is blue. This is yellow.”
  • “Can you show me the…?”
  • “What is this? What is this? What is this?”
  • Return tablets to the box.

The Montessori Color Tablets lesson encourages children to engage their senses and refine their visual perception skills. By exploring the tablets and engaging in various activities, children develop their ability to recognize and differentiate colors, appreciate subtle variations, and build a foundation for later exploration in art, design, and color theory.

Through the use of concrete materials like the Color Tablets, the Montessori approach provides children with hands-on learning experiences that promote independent thinking, fine motor skills, and the development of a keen sense of observation.

More Sensorial Lessons


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