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What are Montessori Sensorial Thermic Bottles and How Can They Benefit Your Students?


In Montessori sensorial education, thermic bottles are a material designed to help children explore the concept of temperature and develop their thermic sense. Thermic bottles consist of a set of glass or metal bottles filled with different materials, such as hot water, cold water, room temperature water, sand, or oil. The bottles are labeled with temperature indicators to guide the child’s exploration.

The purpose of thermic bottles in Montessori education is to assist children in refining their ability to perceive and discriminate between different temperatures.

Through hands-on interaction with the bottles, children develop their thermic sense, which is their capacity to discern differences in temperature and understand the concept of hot and cold.

Montessori Thermic Bottles are a Sensorial material that defines the child’s haptic sense. Children truly enjoy this work.


“These are the thermic bottles.  Can you say ‘thermic’? If you would like to help me fill them up I can show you how to do some work with them.”


Fill up the bottles. You can do this part ahead of time.


After filling up the bottles, carry them to the work area and place it down on the mat

The Thermic Bottles Lesson: Presentation I

  • Pick up a bottle with a 3-finger grip and remove it from the basket.
  • Place it on the table to the left. Continue removing the bottles one by one and arrange them in a horizontal line in front of you.
  • “Now let’s feel the thermic bottles.
  • Place the upper half of the inside of the fingers of both hands against either side of the bottle lightly.
  • Feel each bottle in a similar manner, pausing between each one.
  • Let the child feel the bottles.
  • Now let’s see if we can find a pair. Let’s find a match for this one.” Isolate the first bottle below.
  • Feel the control, then feel each of the bottles. Pause and bring hands together after feeling each one.
  • Move the matching pair slightly out of line.
  • Feel the control again, then the matching bottle: “These two match, these are a pair.”
  • Move the pair to the left side and isolate a new control.
  • Randomize the bottles and then offer the child a turn.

The Thermic Bottles Lesson: Presentation II

Complete Presentation I blindfolded or add an additional pair of bottles.

The Thermic Bottles Lesson: Presentation III

  • After sorting the bottles into pairs as in the other Presentations, say to the child: “Let’s find which pair is the coolest. This pair is the coolest.”  Feel each pair and moves the coolest pair to the far left.
  • “Now which pair is the hottest? This pair is the hottest.” Feel each pair and move the hottest pair to the far right.
  • “This pair is warm.”  Move the remaining pair between the first two. Feel each again to check the order. Offer the child a turn.

Through the exploration of thermic bottles, children engage their senses and develop a more refined understanding of temperature differences. They learn to identify and discriminate between hot and cold, understand the concept of degrees of warmth or coolness, and develop their thermic sense.

By providing hands-on experiences with concrete materials like thermic bottles, the Montessori approach promotes sensory exploration, observation, and critical thinking. Children develop their fine motor skills, sensory discrimination, and an appreciation for the natural world and its various qualities.


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