Practical Life activities teach children how to respect themselves, each other, and their environment.
Practical Life Activities in Preschool/Kindergarten
A three year old learns to push in her chair and scrub her table after lunch while a Kindergartener uses her reading skills to bake a cake in class with a friend.
These activities meet a child’s desire to feel competent, to be independent, and to belong.
Practical Life activities also help children develop a sense of order and sequence, increase coordination, and enable children to do meaningful things during their time at school.
- Care of the Person: Routines such as hand washing, dressing, and personal hygiene.
- Care of the Environment: Activities such as washing chairs, sweeping, dusting, cooking, feeding animals, watering plants, composting, and recycling promote the beginnings of community awareness and an ecological ethic.
- Social Relations: Maria Montessori called these exercises Grace and Courtesy. They include developing skills in greeting visitors, participating in a conversation, self-assertion, resolving conflicts, initiating, and maintaining friendships.
- Coordination of Movement: This includes many exercises involving hand/eye coordination, carrying objects, and self-expression through movement, as well as initiating and inhibiting actions and impulses.