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Transfer of Dry Goods Montessori Practical Life Lesson


One of the first lessons in Montessori Early Childhood (3-6 years old) is the Transfer of Dry Goods. This Montessori practical life lesson is easy and inexpensive to put together in the classroom. It’s also a great example of a Practical Life that’s easy to replicate at home.

Montessori Practical Life Lesson - Transferring Dry Goods

Montessori Practical Life Lesson of Transferring Dry Goods

To set up this lesson, you want to use identical bowls and all like goods. This allows you to isolate the quality and difficulty of the activity for the child.

Possible dry goods to use with the lesson:

  • stones
  • pasta
  • beans
  • coins
  • beads
  • pom poms
  • corn kernels
  • pumpkin seeds

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Transferring Dry Goods Approach

Invite the child to the work: “Today we’re going to learn something new!” Take tray with bowls from shelf with both hands, lift so arms are even with waist and slowly carry to table and gently place down.

Trace surface area of each bowl saying, “This is a large dish and this is a large dish. This one is empty. This one is full.”

With dominant hand, slowly pick up a handful of objects from left bowl and transfer to empty bowl on the right.  Continue until all objects are transferred and end with, “now this bowl is empty and this bowl is full.”

Repeat, moving objects back to original bowl. Then ask the child, “Would you like a turn?”

Pick up tray and return to shelf.

Aims include concentration, coordination, hand eye coordination and preparation to pour liquids.

Learn more on the Practical Life Philosophy here

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