Practical Life

Practical Life activities are those that the child has observed through daily living. The practical life area of the classroom provides a link to the child’s home environment and thus is an extension of the child’s developmental process. The exercises or activities found here are familiar to the children as many of them have been observed at home. Pouring, polishing, dusting, and sweeping provide the child with a link to home.


The child’s first introduction to numbers is made with a set of red and blue rods representing the quantities one through then. The sanpaper numbers are then presented at the same time and when both are known well the association between the two is made. Various materials help the child to internalize the concept of one to ten. Next the decimal systems is presented to the child using the Golden Beads: units, tens, hundreds, and thousands.


Children live in a world of senses. Through the senses the child gains knowledge, becomes more aware of his environment and grows in consciousness. The aim of the Sensorial materials, which are scientific and exact are to refine rather than develop the senses. The child is able to bring order and system to the impressions he/she has already gathered. Materials refine the child’s motor coordination, help visual discrimination, refine the senses, and deepen concentration


In the Montessori environment the child “meets” the alphabet through the sandpaper letters. The child traces the letter and learns the sound, giving a muscular impression, through recital and repetition the child fixes the path of the letters in his memory.