Year: 2017

Modesty, Comfort, Elegance and Breastfeeding with Tasnim Collections

The beautiful weather is back, Ramadan is coming very soon inshaAllah and I do believe that adequate clothing is a necessity. I leave and breathe abayas. I am a dress lady as I love feeling comfortable. I received last year from Tasnim Collections the “Sarah” abaya with the extra large Shayla both in light weight. I fell in love instantly but had to wait the beautiful days to wear them (quite cold here but now you can have them in Heavy weight!). I can now enjoy these well made piece of clothing. Mashallah, I love how the design is simple yet clever with a front zip for breastfeeding. I love the large not to say huge choice of colours and the quality of the fabric, very breathable! I love the elasticated sleeves so much that i need to thank Tasnim Collection to think about the mums out there who run after children, do crafts or are busy with some mechanics. The Shayla is now my favourite hijab, it falls beautifully and is very large so …

Montessori for Infants and toddlers: Object Permanence Skills and Imbucare Box

When you look for Montessori materials for infants and Toddlers , the most well known are the Object permanence Boxes and Imbucare Boxes. But what is it and what does it refer to?  The object permanence boxes – whether it is wooden or an empty tissue box – is referred to as “imbucare” which is Italian for “post”, as in post a letter in a mailbox. When you put something INSIDE of something (ball in box, shell in drawer), that is imbucare. Any activity where the child uses his hands to put something ONTO something (“infilare”) or INTO something (“imbucare”), it aids in the development of the hand which ultimately aids in the development of the brain and the flourish of neural connections. Posting objects into boxes is a natural inclination for young children. This activity gives the child practice with hand-eye co-ordination as the soft ball is pushed through the hole. The shape is then retrieved from the front of the box in the drawer to repeat the activity over and over. The Skill involved in these activities is the Object …

Montessori activities: Learning the months with a Slovak Fairy tale “The Twelve Months”

 ONCE upon a time, there lived a mother who had two daughters. One was her own child, the other her stepdaughter. She was very fond of her own daughter, but she would not so much as look at her step-daughter. The only reason was that Marusa, the stepdaughter, was prettier than her own daughter, Holena. The gentle-hearted Marusa did not know how beautiful she was, and so she could never make out why her mother was so cross with her whenever she looked at her. She had to do all the housework, tidying up the cottage, cooking, washing, and sewing, and then she had to take the hay to the cow and look after her. She did all this work alone, while Holena spent the time adorning herself and lazing about. But Marusa liked work, for she was a patient girl, and when her mother scolded and rated her, she bore it like a lamb. It was no good, however, for they grew crueller and crueller every day, only because Marusa was growing prettier and …

Circular Calendar, a Waldorf way for teaching the seasons, the months and the year {Grapat Toys}

Few months ago, we started a new routine in our house to help to give rhythm to our days. Every morning with #1 before the school run we set the date, we check the seasons, revise the months and days of the week. I was looking for a fabric calendar for months and we finally got our hand in one while we were in Holidays in France. This calendar is really well made and it is a lovely educative room/playroom decoration. We love it a lot. But little by little,  I noticed that #1 was struggling a bit with the concept of year, months and seasons. We have talked about the solar system trying to help with the cycle concept. This is when I realised that our fabric calendar was not helping. I then thought that a circular one will be more helpful and realistic. Why a circle? We usually think of the passing of time as linear, with one event following another in sequence by day, by month, by year. But placing events in a circular or wheel shape …

Let’s celebrate Piccolo First Birthday {Classic Victoria sponge Cream Recipe}

Good Morning! Today we are happy to take part to the Piccolo First Birthday. I cannot believe that Piccolo has been launched just last year. I do remember when I first purchased them as I was desperately looking for a vegan/vegetarian baby food option for my girls. And when I first found about Piccolo last year, I had no idea of how “new” they were in the market place but I did notice that they were not available before. We have enjoyed lots of Piccolo Goodness this year and we have been delighted by the new flavours that they have introduced too. Now “My Little Piccolo” is like part of our family as it is the only “Baby food” in our home, in our cupboards otherwise I cook everything. They are seen like a special treat, and it is a healthy one :). So definitely, we naturally joined in the fun! We have tried to create a birthday cake recipe adding some Piccolo pouches in it. My daughters favourite flavour is the Raspberry and apple …

Montessori inspired Toys or traditional materials for home? Introduction to Grapat Toys

When we decided to switch and totally commit to Montessori pedagogy, we also decided to change our way to play. We use the Montessori materials to work and we make things clear for our daughters that they are not toys but we also wanted to keep a specific space at home for free play. But what about the toys we wanted ? It is quite an important question if you want to settle a Montessori environment at home. You do not need Montessori materials but you might be willing to use Montessori inspired toys, but what to choose? Clearly, we wanted some toys that will enhance the teaching and be in the continuity with the Montessori materials. One of the hallmarks of Montessori is the use of natural materials and colours that are not over stimulating. Natural materials are more beautiful and offer the child the understanding of the true weight of an object, helping them learn how much strength is needed to lift or move something. So through that lens, even if bright colours are not really Montessori …

Welcoming Spring with Geggamoja

Yesterday was the first day of spring and we could feel the warmth coming back. The sunny days are back and we can see green leaves and beautiful daffodils everywhere. But spring is also coming with rain showers so let’s get ourselves ready for it! Spring has always been our favourite season with the girls as you can do so many activities and enjoy to go out. We have been really busy last week planting our potatoes from the #growyourownpotatoes project and sowing some tree seeds from The woodland trust. It so exciting to see the natural cycles of life and gardening is a beautiful, engaging and quiet activity to do with young children. So as beautiful days are coming back, I thought it was the time to use again some bright and lightweight clothes to accommodate the new climat. So today baby is wearing a Geggamoja outfit from the Spring/Summer 2017 Collection. Do you remember? I wrote a review last year about this wonderful Scandinavian brand, click here if you would like to know more. …

The specificity of Montessori Materials

Montessori materials are quite unique and once you discover all of them, I promise you that you are going to be fascinated and never look back again. All of them are linked together while having a specific goal. Montessori materials invite activity. Each of the Montessori apparatus brings you to explore by the forms, colours and engage all the senses to help learn. The specificity of Montessori materials are that each of them isolates one quality. For example, the pink tower is made up of ten pink cubes of varying sizes. The child constructs a tower with the largest cube on the bottom and the smallest on top. This material isolates the concept of dimensions. The cubes are all the same colour and texture; the only difference is their size. The aim of this apparatus is to help the child feel with all his senses the variation in size by the weight, length, etc. Other materials isolate different concepts for example, the colour tablets for the colours, the geometry materials for forms, and so on. Moreover, all Montessori materials are …

Eight months update: Baby’s milestones – From Babies With Love Whale Baby grow

Recently, Baby turned up seven months old. I cannot believe how fast she has grown but that’s it: she is not my little newborn anymore. We have started weaning at six and a half months even if she was showing lots of readiness signs but she has been poorly in January and I thought we’d rather delay a bit. Because baby is still toothless I started with purees and it worked for approximately two weeks. Then, little by little, she started refusing spoon feeding and willing to feed herself. How can a baby with only gums eat a cucumber? I have no idea but she is managing! She is not a tummy baby. As soon as I put her on her tummy, she turns back. But recently, not to say few days ago, she eventually decided to sit unsupported! What a joy! Never compare babies are they all reach their milestones at their own pace. So let’s see together what we might expect from an 8 months old baby based on Bounty. Dropping and throwing They say: …

Montessori for Infants: Heuristic play and Treasure Baskets

Recently, treasure baskets have been really all over the places and I am sure you have crossed them or at least heard these words somewhere. They are selling as a set or you can buy parts to make your own. This is how you might have heard about them. But at the end, what is it all about? Where does it come from? And what does it stand for? Treasure Baskets are an extension of a concept developed in the early 1980’s by Elinor Goldschmied and Sonia Jackson in their book, People under Three, called HEURISTIC PLAY. What does Heuristic play means? Heuristic play is rooted in young children’s natural curiosity. As babies grow, they move beyond being content to simply feel and ponder objects, to wanting to find out what can be done with them. Toddlers have an urge to handle things: to gather, fill, dump, stack, knock down, select and manipulate in other ways. Household or kitchen utensils offer this kind of activity as every parent knows, and can occupy a child for surprising stretches …