Montessori outdoor activities are my absolute favorite. Dr. Montessori believed that the outdoors is a natural extension of the classroom, that there should be harmony between the indoor and outdoor learning environments. The outdoors is the ideal sensorial experience. A child discovers the world through his senses in the most holistic way. Beyond the organic development through seeing, smelling, hearing, feeling, and, yes, I am going to write it, tasting in the great outdoors, nature brings ripe lessons in botany, zoology, and STEM in the most basic, pure ways.
“Nature study consists of simple, truthful observations that may, like beads on a string, finally be threaded upon the understanding and thus held together as a logical and harmonious whole. “ ~ Anne Botsford Comstock, Handbook of Nature Study
Key Ideas of a Montessori Outdoors Classroom
So, what are the key tenets of a Montessori outdoor education? The same as the key tenets for the indoor classroom! Key tenets include:
- Child Led
- Well Prepared Environment
- Teacher as Guide
- Liberty within wide parameters
- Intrinsic Motivation
- Observe the Child
Presenting Montessori Outdoor Activities
Over a series of Taking Montessori Outside posts, I will do my best to present activities that lend themselves to the Montessori work cycle both indoors and outdoors. My idea of a great activity is not one that can be done in 30 minutes and taped up on the wall. My idea is that children crave more of a rhythm to their learning, that when they go on a Bug Hunt, that it doesn’t stop at examining the bugs in the outdoor habitat, that it goes further, that a child notes the name and continues research in some way at home or in the classroom, at that moment or in a week. The activities cannot all be project based but my goal is that the activities will inspire a desire to learn more and a desire to discover more.
I created a downloadable book with over 40 activities covering the Practical Life, Sensorial, Math, and Language areas of the Montessori classroom. You can purchase Taking Montessori Outside: An Activities Guide for Parents & Teachers from my Teachers Pay Teachers store, or purchase by clicking on the “Buy Now” button below! Enjoy!