EPL
Zip Dressing Frames
Description of Materials
Wooden frame on which are pinned two flaps of cloth with a zip sewn in the middle between the flaps, holding them together.
Objectives
Direct Aims
 To teach a child how to zip and unzip.
Indirect Aims
 To develop the child’s eyehand coordination
 To develop the child’s fine motor control
 To develop the child’s concentration
 To develop the child’s independence
 To satisfy the child’s need for order
Control of Error
The zip are attached.
Language
The presentation is given in silence.The names are given later if the child enquires and the language is extended with any appropriate words to describe the activity.Appropriate words can be – pull.
Approximate age
From 2 ½ years onwards.
Presentation
 This is an individual presentation.
 Teacher invites the child to the dressing frame stand and introduce the particular dressing frame, saying “This is the zip dressing frame”.
 Teacher show the child how to carry the dressing frame to the selected work area on the table. Teacher place the dressing frame on the table in front of the child.
 Teacher shows the child how to unzip. Place the left hand on the left side of the flap. Pull the zip head down with the thumb and index finger of the right hand right to the end.
 Then teacher shows the child how to zip up. Place the left hand right at the bottom of the zip, holding both the flaps down. Pull the zip head with the thumb and index finger of the right hand all the way up.
 When exercise is completed, teacher shows the child how to take the frame and place it back on the dressing frame stand. Explain to the child that he needs to return the frame back to its place so that others can work on it. He may work on the materials anytime he wishes to, on his own.
Sensorial
Pink Tower
Description of Materials
 Ten pink wooden cubes varying in size from one cubic centimetre to one cubic decimetre
 A floor mat
Objectives
 To develop the child’s visual and muscular perception of dimension in judging sizes
 To develop the child’s coordination of movement and fine motor control
 To prepare the child, indirectly, for mathematics by giving the child experiences in comparison, grading and seriation with the cube
 To give the child basic language important in mathematics
Control of Error
If the tower is incorrectly built it may fall down and this will act as control of error. However, if the child makes only a slight error, the teacher should not intervene, but wait for the child to correct his error. It may be necessary for the teacher to present the material again at a later stage.
Language
 Large, small
 Large, larger, largest
 Small, smaller, smallest
 Larger than, smaller than
 As large as, as small as
 Big, little,etc.
Approximate Age
From 2 ½ years onwards.
Presentation 1
 This is an individual exercise which is done on the floor on a floor mat. (Note : Work cycle to be observed)
 The teacher first shows the child how to carry the cubes to the floor mat :
 For the first four cubes starting from the smallest, we use the first 3 fingers to grasp each cube over the top and place it randomly on the floor mat.
 From the 4th cube to the 7th cube, we may use one whole hand to bring each cube to the mat.
 As for the last three cubes, if it is too big for the child to hold with one whole hand, then they may use both hands to carry it to the mat, by balancing the bottom of the cube with the palm of the other hand.
 All the cubes are placed at random on the floor mat.
 Teacher then shows how to build a tower :
 Starts with the largest cube and place the next largest cube centrally on the previous one. Teacher may show how to build the first 3 cubes and then select the next largest cube and invites the child to place that cube on the previous one.
 Allow the child to do the last piece of cube by himself.
 When the tower is completed, invites the child to view it from the top.
 When the presentation is completed, teacher then shows how to remove the cubes, starting from the cube at the top and placing it on the mat.
 Teacher shows for the first two cubes and then invites the child to remove the rest.
 To place the cubes back to its shelves, we begin by taking the largest cube.
Exercise 1
The child may choose to build the Pink Tower.
Note:
 The cubes have the advantage that any two successive cubes vary in three dimensions, length, width and height, thus making their difference in size reasonably obvious to children. Easy beginnings are never a waste of time when they help to establish basic ideas and here it may be useful to build a tower from :
 The three or four smallest cubes.
 The three largest cubes.
 The three successive cubes from the middle.
 With slow or special needs children, five cubes can be used, made up of every other cube.
 The most difficult of the blocks to place in position is the smallest, which is 3/8″ on each side. The child’s arm has to be quite steady to place this small object on the center of the next largest block and requires close attention and obvious efforts in performing this task
 By holding the first few cubes with the thumb, index and middle fingers , i.e. the ‘pincer grip’ will prepare the child for holding the pencil later when learning how to write.
 After making repeated use of the cubes, a child’s hand finally adopts automatically the precise position necessary to cover the top dimension of the cube. In other words, a child develops a muscular memory for define graduations of space.
Presentation 2
When the child is ready, i.e. the child is competent at building the complete tower by placing one cube centrally on another, we then tells the child, “We are going to build the tower in a slightly different way”
 Teacher shows how to build the complete tower which has two flat walls all the way up.
 When the tower is completed, teacher takes the smallest piece of cube and says, “Now we are going to slide the smallest cube along the side”. Teacher then slides the smallest cube along the steps of the tower from the bottom to the top and finally placing that piece of cube on the top.
 Teacher may do the Three Period Lesson with the biggest and smallest cube – “This is big” ; “This is small”
Notes:
 By building the tower in the way shown in the second presentation allows the child to see that the smallest cube has some relationship to the others as it will “fit” anywhere on any of the steps of the tower when we slide the cube along the steps of the tower from the bottom to the top.
 Another aspect of the material is that the smallest cube is the centimeter cube, or cubic centimeter, and the largest contains a thousand of these (the litre). The child will meet these ideas very much later, but handling the cubes at this present stage should contribute to a most useful experimental foundation.
Extension
 Instead of building it vertically up, we may build it horizontally, laying the cubes on the floor mat. Teacher may show how to build the first 3 cubes and then allow the child to proceed with the rest of the cubes.
 Play a game with the children. This can be done in a group. Select 3 different sized cubes and lay them on the table. Teacher make a request, for e.g. ‘Bring me the largest cube’, ‘Bring me the smallest cube’ or the teacher selects a cube and then says ‘Bring me a larger cube than this’,…etc. The child will have to bring the cube required to the teacher.
 May also be built as a spiral.
 Invite the child to make a two dimensional representations of the tower. Firstly, prepare some ready cut squares from pink paper or card which matches the dimension of the cubes. Place these in a basket. Invite the child to first build the pink tower and then make a picture of the tower by gluing the squares onto a piece of paper.
Language
Insets For Design
Description of Materials
 10 geometric shapes in plastic or metal. They each have a frame.
 Squares of different coloured papers which are exactly the same size as the frame.
 A set of good quality coloured pencils.
Objectives
 To develop the child’s muscles for holding a pencil correctly.
 To develop control and precision of movement with flexibility.
 To give the experience in anticlockwise (counterclockwise) movements, parallel straight lines when filling in shapes, downward and lefttoright strokes.
 Indirect preparation for art development of pattern and use of colour.
Control of Error
 The frame and inset control the figure or design.
 If the child’s parallel lines go beyond the figure the error will be apparent.
Language
 Insets, frame, curved lines, horizontal lines, vertical lines, diagonal lines, patterns, and designs.
Approximate Age
3 to 4 years
Presentation 1
 The teacher invites the child to work with the material. She invites the child to the shelf, shows him the material and names it, “These are Insets for Design”.
 The teacher chooses a simple frame of a curved figure, takes a sheet of inset paper and two different coloured pencils.
 The teacher then invites the child to choose a place to work on the table. She shows the child how to carry the materials to the chosen spot.
 The teacher sits next to the child, wherever the child has the fullest view, taking into consideration the teacher herself and the child being right or lefthanded.
 Teacher places the material in front of the child and then shows how to work with the material :
1st. stage :The teacher shows the child how to cover the sheet of inset paper with the frame. She then takes one of the coloured pencils, holding it with proper pencil grip and draws slowly around the inside of the frame in an anticlockwise direction. Then, she invites the child to try tracing the outline of the frame like she did. If the child is able to do it, then proceed on with the next stage.
2nd. Stage :
The teacher then shows the child how to fill the inside of the figure with controlled straight lines close together, from left to right or downward from top to bottom side of the outline to the other with the other coloured pencil.
When the child understands the activity, encourage the child to do the exercise.
 When the presentation is completed, teacher then shows how to place the materials back to the shelf. Explain to the child that he may work on the materials anytime he wishes on his own and that the materials have to be returned to its place when completed for others to use.
Note:

Children normally find difficulty in the beginning but will improve with practice. Encourage the child to practice often. Pay special attention to the child’s writing position and pencil grip to ensure the development of good writing habits.

These exercises are presented over a period of time as the child’s control of the pencil increases.

These drawings perfect a child’s skill in that they oblige him to draw lines of different lengths and make him ever more skilful and sure in the use of this hands… I do not believe that any means could be found more efficacious in gaining such a victory in less time and which could afford so much amusement to a child. ” Discovery of the Child, Maria Montessori, Chapter 15.
Exercise 1
The child repeats the exercise. Encourage the child to practice often.
Exercise 2
A Symmetric Design

 The teacher chooses one simple frame of an inset design, a sheet of inset paper and two different coloured pencils.
 The teacher covers the inset paper with the frame and invites the child to choose one coloured pencil. Teacher takes the coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame in an anticlockwise direction. Then she lifts up the frame and turns it 45 degrees, use the other coloured pencil and draw the inside of the frame again so that it overlapped.
 The areas of the design are then filled with controlled straight lines close together vertically, diagonally, horizontally or with downward strokes, from left to right using two coloured pencils.
 Encourage the child to do the exercise using all of the geometric figures.
Exercise 3
Outlining the Inset

 The teacher chooses one simple frame of an inset design, the inset, a sheet of inset paper and three different coloured pencils.
 The teacher covers the inset paper with the frame, takes one of the coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame anticlockwise direction. Then she removes the frame.
 She then holds the inset over the outline and draw round the figure using a different coloured pencil. The figure will be doubly outlined on the paper in two colours.
 Invite the child to fill in the figures with controlled straight lines close together in any direction from left to right or top to bottom with any one coloured pencil. Using another contrasting coloured pencil, he fills in the narrow outer gap of the figure.
 Encourage the child to do the exercise using all of the geometric figures.
Exercise 4
A Geometric Design

 The teacher chooses two different frames of two insets design, a sheet of inset paper and four different coloured pencils.
 The teacher covers the inset paper with one of the frame, takes one of the coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame anticlockwise direction. Then she removes the frame.
 She then covers the inset paper with the other frame and draws the inside of the frame with a different coloured pencil. In this way, the teacher shows how to create a design.
 She then invites the child to fill in the gaps with controlled straight lines close together in any direction from left to right or top to bottom with different coloured pencils.
 Encourage the child to do the exercise using different geometric figures and a variety of coloured pencils.
Exercise 5
A Geometric Design

 The teacher chooses two different frames of two insets design, a sheet of inset paper and four different coloured pencils.
 The teacher covers the inset paper with one of the frame, takes one of the coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame anticlockwise direction. Then she removes the frame.
 She then covers the inset paper with the other frame and draws the inside of the frame with a different coloured pencil. In this way, the teacher shows how to create a design.
 She then invites the child to fill in the gaps with controlled straight lines close together in any direction from left to right or top to bottom with different coloured pencils.
 Encourage the child to do the exercise using different geometric figures and a variety of coloured pencils.
Exercise 6
Complex Design

 The teacher chooses three simple frames of three insets design, a sheet of inset paper and several different colour pencils.
 The teacher covers the inset paper with the frame, takes one of the coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame anticlockwise direction. Then she removes the frame.
 The teacher then uses another frame and covers the inset paper, takes another coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame anticlockwise. Then she removes the frame.
 She repeats the above for the third frame.
 Invite the child to fill in the gaps by drawing controlled straight lines close together in any direction from left to right or top to bottom with different coloured pencil.
 Encourage the child to do the exercise using as many figures and as many coloured pencils he like.
Exercise 7
A frieze Design

 The teacher chooses one simple frame of an inset design, a sheet of A4 size paper and several different coloured pencils.
 The teacher takes the frame, covers it on one side of the A4 size paper, takes one of the coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame anticlockwise direction.
 Then she removes the frame and repeats the design over and over again without having any gaps connecting the designs together.
 Invite the child to fill in the figures with controlled straight lines close together in any direction from left to right or top to bottom using different coloured pencils.
 Encourage the child to do the exercise using all of the geometric figures.
Exercise 8
Larger Scale Design

 This is to show the child how to create a geometric design using a larger piece of paper.
 The teacher chooses several frames of several inset designs, a sheet of A4 size paper and several different coloured pencils.
 The teacher takes one frame, covers it on one side of the A4 size paper, takes one of the coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame anticlockwise direction. Then she removes the frame.
 She takes another frame(overlaos the first outline drawn) and places it on the A4 sized paper. She takes another coloured pencil and draws the inside of the frame anticlockwise direction.
 She repeats the above exercise with different frames and different coloured pencils till the whole A4 sized paper is filled with designs.
 Invites the child to fill in the figures with controlled straight lines close together in any direction from left to right or top to bottom using different coloured pencils.
 Encourage the child to do the exercise using all of the geometric figures.
 This is to show the child how to create a geometric design using a larger piece of paper.
Mathematics
Number Rods
Description of Materials
 Montessori Number Rods.
 Large felt mat for floor exercise.
Objectives
 To introduce the child to fix quantity.
 To introduce the child to counting from 1 to 10 using whole quantities, e.g. 2 as a whole.
 To make the child aware of the sequence of numbers 1 to 10.
 To make the child aware of the quantitative relationship between numbers, e.g. 2 is more than 1 and 3 is more than 2, etc.
 To make the child aware of the concept of numbers as an aggregate of 1’s (e.g. the child can check this by counting the rods)
 To introduce the verbal number names and their quantity from 110.
Control of Error
 If the stair is correctly built the child will be able to name the rods from one to ten in the correct order. If the stair is built incorrectly, the stair will not be a smooth ascending stair, so visually, the child could see that it was not built correctly.
Language
 One, two, three to ten.
Approximate age
3 and above.
Presentation 1
 Teacher invites the child to the shelf and introduces her to the Number Rods. Teacher invites the child to select a working place on the floor and then show the child how to bring the materials to the working place.
 Teacher shows how to lay out the floor mat.
 Teacher places the rods at random on the mat.
 Teacher shows the child how to build the stairs with the first three rods. Then she invites the child to continue building the rest.
 When completed, teacher takes the first 3 rods and go through “The Three Period Lesson” and introduces the names “one, two, three” in association with the quantities one, two, three.
The First Period
She points to the first rod and say ,”This is one. (The teacher encourages the child to repeat the name after her and says, ‘Can you say one?“) She then points to the second rod and say, “This is two.” And then to the third rod and say “This is three”
The Second Period
Teacher then says to the child “Show me 1” and the child will probably point to the first rod. “Show me 2” and so on.
The Third Period
Teacher jumbles up the rods and place at random on the table. She then points to any one rods and say ‘What is this?” and the child answer. She repeats for the other two rods.
 When exercise is completed, the teacher shows the child how to place the Number Rods back to its original place on the shelf and explain to the child that the materials must be returned to its place so that others may work on it. He may work on the material anytime he wishes to on his own.
Additional Note:
 Gradually, the child will learn up to 10 with the introduction of three rods at a time with one rod from the previous lesson and two new ones, for e.g. One, two, three in the first lesson and then three, four, five in the second lesson and so on till ten. If the child forgets some of them, use the Three Period Lesson to teach him again. Remember to count slowly.
Individual Exercise
The child can take the number rods anytime he wishes to build and count the rods up to ten.
Extension
 Instead of building the stair the method shown above, we can also build them in a graph format as shown in fig. 1.5.
 Play a game. Ask the child to close their eyes. Teacher takes away one rod. Ask child to open their eyes and find which is missing
The Spindle Box
Description of Materials
 A wooden box with ten compartments. The numerals 0 to 9 written at the back of the box.
 45spindles
Note : The difference between the Number Rods and the Spindle Box is
 With the Number Rods, the quantity is fixed and the numerals are loose
 With the Spindle Box, the numerals are fixed and the quantities are loose.
 Zero is introduced.
Objectives
 To give the child further practice in associating each numeral with the right number situation.
 To introduce the number and concept of 0.
Control of Error
 There are exactly 45 spindles for the box. The child places the number of spindles associated with the numerals at the back of the box and when he reaches 9, if he finds too many or too few spindles to be placed into the compartment, then he will know that he had make a mistake and he can check his work and correct his error.
Language
0, 1 to 9
Approximate Age
3 and above.
Presentation
 Teacher invites the child to the shelf and introduces her to the Spindle box. Teacher invites the child to select a working place on the table and then shows the child how to carry the materials to the selected working place.
 Teacher place the materials on the table. Teacher points and read the numbers at the back on the box, starting from 0 to 9 and the child repeats after her.
 Teacher and child remove all the spindles from the compartment and place them in front of the box on the table.
 Teacher takes one spindle, grab hold of it in the left hand and say “1”. Then, she places it in the compartment numbered 1. She repeats the same for 2 and 3.
 Teacher encourages the child to carry on with the rest of the spindles
 When child finishes, the teacher points to the compartment numbered 0 and say “0 means nothing, so we do not place any spindles in this compartment.”
 When the exercise is completed, teacher shows the child how to place the materials back to its original place on the shelf. Teacher explains to the child that the materials must be returned to its place so that others may work on it and that he may work on the materials anytime he wishes to, on his own.
Extension
 Place all the spindles correctly in the Spindle Box except perhaps 2 compartments. Invite the child to spot the mistake. The child will have to count and check each compartment to find the mistake.
 Invite the child to close their eyes. Place a bundle of spindles in their hand. They may use both hands. Ask them to feel and count the spindles and to tell you how many they have in their hands. By closing their eyes and depending on just their feeling of the spindles, it gives them a better feel of the quantity they have in their hand as the number increased.
Variation
To give the child further practice in associating each numeral with the right number situations and to reinforce the concept of zero.
 “Can you clap for me 5 times? “
 “Can you come to me 0 times ?”
 “Can you stamp your feet 3 times ?”