When you find yourself applying the Montessori principles at your home, it inevitably influences every room and the kitchen is no exception here.
In this article, we’ll talk about what it means to arrange a Montessori kitchen, what could be the best food-related activities you can do together with your child, and the best products Montessori families use and absolutely love in their kitchen.
What is a Montessori kitchen?
A Montessori kitchen is one that is designed to be both functional and beautiful. It should be a place where the family can gather to cook, eat, and socialize. The kitchen should be arranged in a way that is both aesthetically pleasing and makes it easy to prepare meals.
A Montessori-friendly kitchen is a space where children are invited to take part in real-life activities like cookingor participating in the clean-up. It should encourage the kids to move freely, encourage independence, and teach manners while dining.
A Montessori kitchen should be designed to encourage the child's natural love of movement. It should be a place where they can freely explore and experiment. The kitchen should also be a place where the child can learn to be independent and to take care of themselves. One of the best things you can do to inspire your child’s love of cooking is to involve them in the kitchen as much as possible.
Finally, a Montessori kitchen should be where the child can learn good manners while dining. The child shouldlearn how to set the table, how to serve food, and how to clean up after themselves. By teaching the childthese things, they will be prepared to take their place in the world as confident and capable adults.
Exploring and experimenting
One of the basic principles of the Montessori method is giving a child the freedom of movement. There is a whole world around them that they need to explore and learn through experience.
This doesn't mean that you are letting your child on their own unguarded to face the drawer full of pretty dangerous kitchen utensils especially when they don't know how to use them. But by giving your child the freedom to explore, you are helping them to develop their independence and learn new skills.
One and the most efficient way to encourage this is to create a friendly and safe environment for your little one to experience the world of cooking together with you.
Taking care of themselves
Kids in kitchens usually spend only the minimum time possible or else there is a danger that they can break something or even hurt themselves. However, from a Montessori perspective, every kitchen is a place that provides opportunities for a toddler to learn new skills and take an active part in everyday activities.
Toddlers are naturally curious and want to explore their environment. The kitchen is full of interesting objects and activities that can capture their attention. With a little guidance from an adult, toddlers can safely participate in simple kitchen tasks.
Allowing toddlers to help with meal preparation can be a great way for them to learn about food and nutrition. They can also learn about measurement, sequencing, and other important concepts. Plus, it's a greatopportunity for them to bond with the adults in their lives.
So next time you're in the kitchen, consider inviting your toddler to help out.
The importance of grace and courtesy in kids' life cannot be underestimated. Good table manners are a key part of being a well-mannered individual and can instill important values in kids from a young age.
Table manners can teach kids basic etiquette, like how to properly set a table or wash their hands before eating. They can also learn how to use the right utensils, and to say “thank you” or “yes, please” when appropriate.
Good table manners are an essential part of being a well-rounded individual. By teaching kids the importance of grace and courtesy, you’re setting them up for success in all areas of their life.
How to create a Montessori kitchen?
A Montessori kitchen should be arranged so that everything is within reach of the child, and all surfaces are safe for them to use. Here are some tips on how to set up a Montessori kitchen for kids:
1 Provide the child access to the counter height
A Montessori kitchen cannot exist without a learning tower. They are tall, stable platforms that allow children to safely participate in activities at counter height. It is an essential part of any Montessori kitchen because this tower provides a safe and convenient way for children to participate in cooking activities. Without a learningtower, children would have to stand on unstable chairs or stools to reach the counter, which could lead to accidents. Learning towers also make it easier for children to see and reach what they need while cooking, and they can be used as a step stool when needed.
Many kids are being impatient and sometimes even annoyed just because they’re simply curious and want to know what’s going on up there. But once your little one gets on a learning tower to the same level as you, they can engage in endless kitchen activities while being in a Montessori-friendly space.
2 Make easy access to everything
Using small cupboards, low shelves, or bottom drawers to store everything your child needs is an easy and effective way to keep everything organized and within reach. This way, they can easily grab what they need without having to ask for help.
You can pick a place, for example, on a shelf that will serve as a place for healthy snacks and some water or juice. This will help to ensure that your child is getting the nutrients they need and staying hydrated throughout the day while encouraging independence and healthy eating habits.
3 Use real cutlery
When you feel that your child is ready, instead of plastic cups, forks, or plates, try introducing them to using child-sized versions of real items. Of course, there is a much higher chance to break something, but it also builds up a child's responsibility.
But for younger kids, it is fine to use steel cups and wooden knives just to keep them safe enough and everything will be just fine.
4 Provide them with cleaning accessories
The Montessori approach is all about using play in order to teach children to be independent and to take care of their environment. A big part of this is teaching them how to do things like sweep and wipe up spills, being a guide for them into adult-like activities.
Providing the right tools is a key – a child-sized dustpan, brush, and cloth will do the trick. With these tools, your little one will be able to take care of the messes around the house. Cleaning is a great way to teach themresponsibility and help them develop a sense of pride in their work.