Smart Moves A Book Review Part Two by C Wilhelm of of Montessori on a Budget

Smart Moves: A Book Review Part Two (Chapters 6-12) by C Wilhelm of Montessori on a Budget

This post has a review of Smart Moves: Learning is Not All in Your Head by Carla Hannaford PhD regarding chapters 6-11. This is also for our online book club. It is difficult to break this book into sections, and I really want to post the entire book as it is so enlightening. This book supports the Montessori method in so many ways. *Note:  See also the review of chapters 1-5. Recently there has been a "Prince George" effect causing a surge of interest in Montessori education as Prince George is now attending The Maria Montessori Institute in London. I think there should be a surge of interest from reading Smart Moves, too!

Chapters 6 and 7 are about the importance of movement to the learning process. The author shares many studies and research information to prove the point that movement is not subservient to thought. She cited studies of including a few minutes of controlled movement activities such as Brain Gym, walking, and exercise classes increasing academic test scores. So often it is thought that movement is not helpful for serious learning, but it is according to the author. It is so important two entire chapters full of research and proof are included in the book. 

Smart Moves: A Book Review Part One by Carlyn Wilhelm of Montessori on a Budget

Smart Moves: A Book Review Part One (Chapters 1-5)

The Montessori on a Budget Facebook group has a book club and the January 2016 book is Smart Moves, Why Learning is not all in Your Head by Carla Hannaford. This post has a few of my favorite quotes and thoughts from chapters 1-5, which we discussed online last Friday. Smart Moves was actually first published in 1995, but has since been updated as new research has been made available. It is amazing how well this book fits with Montessori learning! Carla Hannaford has a PhD and has provided facts and details to help everyone understand why "locked ocular" learning (staring) is not actual learning, and why the body much be engaged. This one fact explains why electronics and traditional teaching methods do not provide much learning. Learning needs to be active and hands-on as in the Montessori method.  She recommends children not watch TV until age 8. Children should be active (not passive) participants in their learning. Learning does not happen only in the brain as many people assume. 

Learning does not happen only in the brain

The author explains how the brain develops beginning with birth and presents information about how the senses work together. Adults sleep with their dominant ear down for best sleep unless in an unfamiliar location where they may need to be alert. 

Make Montessori Homemade Valentines with Recycled Children's Artwork

Make Montessori Homemade Valentines with Recycled Children's Artwork

Gather several of your child's paintings to use for making homemade Valentine cards, or ask your child to choose, since the paintings will get cut up into hearts.


First, make a heart out of a cereal or oatmeal box (or any cardboard or old folders). Then cut it out. This is my heart shape you see in the photo. You need a pencil and scissors. Depending on the age and ability of your child, you or your child can begin tracing the cardboard heart on the back of a painting. KEEP READING HERE 

Matching and Graphing Colors and Horses

Matching and Graphing Colors and Horses

This post has an activity using realistic plastic horses as manipulatives for graphing. It also has a free printable to use for tray activities. The color words like red, yellow, and blue are easier to teach as their use is common in the children's experiences. However, the words black, brown, white, gold, and gray are less frequently used and therefore require an intended effort for practice. I realized the Toobs horses by Safari Ltd have exactly the colors children need more time with. I've made a free printable for you to use.  I do think many other little plastic horses might work for this activity, as well. 

First, this is a "color corral" and a paper cube to use as a tray activity.  Either the horse body color, mane color, feet color, or tail colors could be designated as the one to match when the cube is rolled. 

free printable for Matching and Graphing Colors and Horses

Montessori at Home Affordable Online Course for Ages 0-24

Montessori at Home Affordable Online Course for Ages 0-24

Affordable Online Montessori at Home Classes

As I am going to become a grandma this winter, I did some preparation by taking a course by Lisa Nolan about ages 0-24 months.  She has affordable Montessori at home online courses with a wealth of information. For the price of one single toy, you can learn dozens of ideas and how to up-cycle common household items to create a Montessori environment for your child or grandchild. Most of the items can be made at home, saving money and making this wonderful environment affordable and possible. Click here to visit Montessori for the Earth.

The course includes the following and more:

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