Saturday, 9 July 2011

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Montessori Activity: Self-Service Entrance Station for Toddlers


Our entrance with low hooks for Joshua for hanging jackets and bags

Close up: The floor space below the hooks are designated to place the shoes in a line, when entering the entrance
 
We designated to lowest shoes shelves for Joshua's shoes
Age: From 2 years old

Objective(s):
1. To help the child to develop independence skills and self-confidence.
2. To help the child to develop the good habit of doing things himself.

Items:
1. Low hooks for hanging jackets and bags
2. Low shelf or designated space on the floor for shoes

Additional Information:
Joshua has been trained from day 1 that he has to take of his shoes, before entering the home from the entrance. When he is younger, I used to take off his shoes, but two weeks ago, we began to encourage Joshua (2Y4M) to take off his sandals himself and line it neatly on the floor. Since then, he has been doing this by himself now.

When arriving home, it is our house rule that we first take off our jackets and shoes here. This is different from Danish tradition, where Danes wear their shoes into the home - not home shoes but outdoor shoes. When I first arrived Denmark and visited Florian, I had a rude shock - he wears his out-door shoes at home. So what is the point of cleaning, when the floor, which covers the biggest area at home is always dirty? This is a Danish tradition that I do not understand and I am NOT going to pass down to Joshua. When it comes to shoes, we are following strictly the Asian tradition of no shoes in door. Interestingly, next door neighbour country Sweden does not have such a tradition, and more and more younger generation of Danes are also adopting the policy of no out-door shoes at home. But it can sometimes become a point of tension, when we have Danish guests, to request them to take off their shoes, but we are sticking to our guns. I am a neat and clean freak, and I am just totally distraught when people wear shoes into our home. Similarly, when we visit other Danes, we become the weird guests, as we are the only one that take off our shoes, although the host do not require us to do that.

What about you? How is it like in your country? Do you wear out-door shoes at home too? I know when in Rome, you are supposed to do as the Romans. When it comes to acquiring cross-cultural skills gracefully, this is one of those that I fail terribly. I hope God and the Danes will forgive me.

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