Caring for your environment is essential in a Montessori home. We as humans, benefit vastly from the resources around us and it only makes sense for us look after these resources in any way we can to ensure a sustainable and beneficial environment for our entire household.
I’ve been enlightened to this principle through the Montessori way as it was not something that I learnt through my childhood and I’m keen to pass this onto my daughter. Admittedly my husband, Tyrone is much better at this than I am so I’m taking a leaf out of his book in many ways.
One of the ways we practice caring for the environment in our home is by looking after the plants in our play space. We have a lucky bamboo and orchids on top of our cube shelf setup. I picked these plants for their hardiness and ease in care. When picking out plants it’s best to go for those that won’t be easily damaged by a toddler. Succulents are great for this and if you have a toddler that still mouths, herbs are a great alternative.
The plants not only add beauty to the space but are also a great learning tool for Havvie to understand the lifecycle of flowers as well as what it means to take care of a natural resource. She’s been using a small pitcher to pour water for almost a year, so this was a great opportunity to extend on these skills by also watering our plants.
The setup I used was quite simple. I placed the plant on the floor with a drainage tray underneath to ensure overwatering didn’t occur and to contain any spills. I placed the pitcher with the jug right next to the plant. She’s watched me water these plants a few times before, so she got right to it when I laid out the materials for her in this way.
After she finished, I explained to her why it’s important to water the bamboo and how the whole household gets to enjoy the beauty of these plants through her work. The only thing I would change about the setup next time is to include a small washcloth near the plant so she can wipe up any spills. Here’s a video of her completing her work.