Thursday, October 13, 2011

Geometric Solids

This week we began the study of our Geometric Solids which is another Montessori material.  This is part of the Sensorial training.  The particular sense trained with these materials is the stereognostic sense.  About this sense, Montessori stated (Dr. Montessori's Own Handbook, 2005, pp. 104-105), "Many psychologists have spoken of the stereognostic sense, that is the capacity of recognising forms by the movement of the muscles of the hand as it follows the outlines of solid objects.  The sense does not only consist of the sense of touch, because the tactile sensation is only that by which we perceive the differences in quality of surfaces, rough or smooth.  Perception of form comes from the combination of two sensations, tactile and muscular."  She went on to develop these geometric solids as a way for a child to get this muscular impression.   We began with three solids:  cone, cylinder and cube.  Even our youngest could remember the names after we presented the solids. 
"Little children, in fact, touch everything they see, thus obtaining a double image (visual and muscular) of the countless different objects which they encounter in their environment."  - Dr. Montessori (Discovery of the Child, 1988 pg. 119)

To increase comprehension, the children colored a small paper with the objects to take home.
The children were then able to match objects in the environment to pictures of the solids. 

If you see objects in the environment with the shape of a cylinder, cone or cube, point it out to your child.  They will enjoy transferring their knowledge learned in school to their own world. 

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