Practical Life

Practical Life is an important component of the Montessori curriculum. Students learn skills centered around caring for oneself, for others, and for their environment. Activities include purposeful work, tasks that children see as daily routine in their home. Children are also introduced to “grace and courtesy”. The goals of practical life lessons are to gain independence, coordination, concentration and a sense of order.

In the early years, the practical life curriculum includes a wide variety of activities: caring for plants and class pets, washing dishes, rolling up the work rug, preparing a snack, using a mortar and pestle, and more. (Read our blog post about making Stone Soup)

As they get older, students develop socially and emotionally through working in a group and managing time. Practical life is important for adolescents as well as they need real life skills to develop into independent adults.

Making applesauce provides so many opportunities to practice tasks: peeling, cutting, stirring, measuring and serving.

The younger students did a great job sewing mittens and enjoyed wearing them on cold mornings.

Flower arranging is part of the practical life curriculum.

During a middle school cooking elective kids learned to make and serve a charcuterie board.

Setting a table is an important life skill.

Making scented sachet bags was a fun activity that was part of our Little House in the Big Woods unit.

The middle school students participated in the “real life challenge”.