KleinKinder and Willow Barn Montessori - where children can just be.... in the countryside!

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Summer's End
Summer holidays
More Spring Activities
Spring activities


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Summer's End

What a wonderful summer it has been too! 
We've spent most days outdoors, the children coming in occasionally to do concentrated work and then out again to absorb the sights and smells of summer. 
We've been able to see a toad, a green woodpecker, the difference between a millipede and a centipede, ladybirds, green shield bugs and we've even managed to have a chat between our soft toy blackbird with a recorded blackbird song and a real blackbird in the garden. That was fun!
We could do lots of our creative ideas outside too-making lavender soap, making pizza for dinner, fennel and lemon balm tea, gingerbread men, making mobiles - the children joining in when they want to and our days have flowed beautifully.

Summer holidays

Well, I have neglected this blog for a while now-in fact most of the summer! 
It's been a wonderful summer full of many outdoor activities.
We've hatched two lots of chicks, watched caterpillars turning to butterflies, hatched our own worms, planted tomatoes, strawberries, potatoes, carrots, spinach and wildflowers. they've compared wild and commercial strawberries.
The children have enjoyed building dens most days, in one location, or another. They've done bubble paintings, painted pasta and made pictures, marble painting.

More Spring Activities

More Spring excitements at KleinKinder! 
The worm eggs arrived, we wet them and immediately, a little worm hatched. The caterpillars are growing fast and we've tried to rescue some frog/toadspawn that we found on the drive. It remains to be seen if we have. The children are enjoying making the bread in the mornings and choosing the extra naturally sweet ingredients to add instead of sugar. Lots of interest in the chicks still and leading to more work on lifecycles. Nothing in the garden has sprouted yet.

Spring activities

We are the proud custodians of two bantam chicks and the children have had so much enjoyment from them. It's been a great way to teach them to hold things gently and for them to learn about instinctive behaviour. These chicks have not seen a mother hen eat or drink and they know exactly what to do. We've enjoyed the process so much that we're incubating another batch from Monica's chickens.
We've also started making our own bread for snack time so this is an activity on the shelf and growing our own sprouting seeds is working well too.


We were all going about our business today when we realised that the egg incubator alarm was going off and the temperature inside the incubator was going down!! My husband, Craig zoomed off around the house to look for spare leads, but no avail, so it was decided that the chicks must be saved and the only way to do this was to keep them warm, in a way that Monica had done before, down her top! This of course created lots of discussions with the children and I left Monica talking biology whilst I shot of to Mole Valley to buy our own incubator.

Nearly Spring!

We're finishing off activities about space for the Mission X project. The last activity were plastic pots with different shades of yellow, from dark to light, which the children had go's at ordering. They enjoyed guessing which the healthy colour for urine was and all were surprised. Hopefully it will help with the 3 year olds who have learned to use a toilet and now don't like going!!
We've been lucky enough to be lent an egg incubator by one of the parents so we're looking forward to seeing eggs hatching around Easter.

Mission X coming to an end and Easter/ Spring on its way!

Mission X project continues to do well-all the children seem to have got something from it, and some children have been really interested. We did some experiments to test how quick the children's reflexes were and I was amazed how quick they are-astronauts need quick reflexes!
The children has done lovely pictures on canvases for their mothers for Mother's day and some lovely cards. We're preparing now for Easter and Spring. We've bought a set to hatch baby caterpillars with and worm eggs to hatch some worms, so we're excited about that and the children have been asking lots of questions about them. We're also going to get hold of an incubator so that the children can watch hens eggs hatch - more excitement! Also my helpful husband has replaced the leaky hens house and built a new one. A really lovely one for only £50. 

Mission X

We are honoured at KleinKinder to have, as one of the parents, a space psychologist, who has introduced us to the Mission X programme of educating children in a fun way as to how to train as an astronaut! The children will be learning about the importance of healthy eating, exercising and what it's like in space in a bid to get 'Astro-Charlie' to the moon. This is a rather prescriptive way of learning, but I shall be adapting it to the Montessori style of teaching and looking at different ways to get all children interested. I have been on a training programme and have been given some wonderful fun materials to work with and lots of interesting anecdotes to tell the children about what it's like for an astronaut in space. One of the tasks next week will be to build a rocket and get the technical side sorted. The children at the moment are still heavily into playing with Nativity costumes and enacting it. We keep trying to move them on to other plays, but they keep coming back to the Nativity! Maria Montessori said, 'Follow the child!' so the Nativity stays for now!


Well, I have good intentions about finding the time to blog, but we shall just have to see if do....!
It's nearly two years ago since I opened in 2011 in which time I have gradually expanded to being a little nursery with children from 8 months to 4 years old. 
I have two members of staff, Megan and Monica-Anne, and at times helped out by my sister, Sue.
I'm so happy about how the free-flow that I'd always wanted to achieve is working so well with the children moving of their own accord between role-play, helping with the animals, academic work and creative work.