Sand Tray Prewriting
Lesson plan developed by Ms. Erika Geelhoed, BA Ed
* Lesson plan objective and assessment can be adapted to use this activity with school-age children.
*Note: This lesson is designed to be used many times and can be a helpful classroom tool for many adapted lesson plans and work.
d) Materials are organized and accessible to children throughout the day
To create the materials:
For the lesson:
- Pour the sand in the tray or box
- Create cards with thick wavy lines, shapes, or letters on thick white cardstock.
- Laminating the cards is advisable.
- Place the sand tray and cards in a larger tray and place on a low shelf in the classroom.
For the lesson:
- Give the children a brief demonstration on how to use the sand tray responsibly.
- Children should carefully use their fingers to trace the shapes, lines or letters on the cards into the sand.
- To “erase” they can gently shake the tray.
- Be sure to explain to students the purpose of this lesson which is to practice and apply their prewriting skills.
- Observe and record the children’s sand tray writing. Assess their ability to create specific lines and shapes to imitate the card lines and shapes.
- When the children are able to copy the cards easily, replace the cards with letters, short words, numbers, simple addition problems, etc. This lesson can also be used for teaching cursive writing for school-age children.
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Independence in the Montessori Classroom
Children are often capable of more than they are allowed. Certain preconceived notions may inhibit a teacher’s comfort level with independence for the children in his or her care. One of the simplest ways to incorporate Montessori elements in program planning is to first begin with setting children up for success with independent habits.