“I’ve learned that making a living is not the same thing as making a life. I’ve learned that life sometimes gives you a second chance. I’ve learned that you shouldn’t go through life with a catcher’s mitt on both hands; you need to be able to throw some things back. I’ve learned that whenever I decide something with an open heart, I usually make the right decision. I’ve learned that even when I have pains, I don’t have to be one…I’ve learned that I still have a lot to learn. I’ve learned that people will forget what you said, people will forget what you did, but people will never forget how you made them feel.”
- Maya Angelou
This unit study focuses on teaching manners using Montessori Grace and Courtesy activities. This interdisciplinary unit incorporates several subjects while providing practical examples of grace and courtesy.
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Wondering How to Teach Manners to Preschoolers?
We've found that activities such as these Montessori grace and courtesy-themed printables are an excellent way for children to explore actions that are courteous and respectful. This hands-on approach to teaching grace and courtesy incorporates several subjects, so children are able to practice a variety of skills while we are also teaching manners.
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Teaching Manners With Montessori Grace and Courtesy
We choose to participate in some form of homeschooling year-round that conforms to our rhythms and routines. As part of our back-to-school routine, we are participating in a lot of Practical Life works in the form of cleaning our homeschool environment, organizing and arranging materials, donating/removing items we no longer need, and mindfully exercising our various Grace & Courtesy muscles.
At the beginning of last year, I briefly mentioned our Grace & Courtesy shelf work. This year is a great time to share some of what we do to kick off the school year and set the tone for Grace & Courtesy throughout the year.
These works are very flexible and this unit study can be built into various themes throughout the year, including Valentine's Day games.
The printable pack we use is courtesy of Trillium Montessori as part of their Kindness Preschool Pack. It’s very affordable and our kids really enjoy the activities (10 total). Our oldest daughter mastered the various skills associated with this printable pack last year. As a result, she has really enjoyed helping to arrange/introduce them to her younger brother this year while revisiting/flexing her own Grace & Courtesy muscles.
Montessori Grace and Courtesy Shelf Work
Teaching Manners With Sensorial Activities
Our son has a solid understanding of color identification, color matching, and grading shades so these aren’t new concepts for him. However, this sensorial sorting work is a great confidence builder as he starts off the year and makes his way toward less familiar territory. It’s also very visually engaging.
The images depict children carrying out a variety of tasks, including taking out the trash, donating items, feeding pets, etc.
Both our older kids have picked it up off the shelf several times so far this year. They really seem to enjoy talking about what is happening in each picture and our daughter enjoys coming up with stories to go along with some of them.
This shadow-matching activity was a bit more challenging for our son. As a result, he really took his time examining each picture and comparing them with the shadow outlines on his mat. His sister enjoyed showing him how to set up the activity on his mat and how to inspect each picture carefully.
This is a really fun addition to our math shelf for mastering the association of number to quantity. Any invitation to use their art materials is a win in our home. Clothespins are another popular option for use with these number clip card activities.
The Question Game & Following Multi-Step Directions Activity hang out on the top shelf of our Language area in a nifty Command Cards Box. Let me tell you, it’s always a fun experience. The Following Directions activity is also a great way to promote movement.
This is just what a few of these Montessori Grace and Courtesy activities look like in our home as we excitedly begin another school year. We tend to select and rotate works based on interest and associated skill level. Sometimes, we also like to take some liberties with the materials if we feel like they can be used for more than one activity. We tend to display our works in our homeschool environment by subject area (Language, Math, etc.). However, I’ve also seen functional and inviting setups grouped by printable theme.
More Opportunities for Teaching Manners
- Daily Routines – Modeling, Sibling/Parent Interactions, Donation
- Interactions with Friends & Family or in the Community
- Imaginative Play: Dolls & Puppets
Conclusion for Teaching Manners
We hope you've enjoyed seeing how we use several of the activities from the Trillium Montessori Kindness Preschool Pack for teaching manners to our preschooler and kindergartener.
How do you teach manners in your homeschool?
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