Sunday 1 April 2012


Montessori Activity: Transferring Beans by Tweezers

Age: From 3 years old

Activity Duration: 5-15 minutes

Preparation Time: 3 minutes


1. To refine the child’s fine motor skills with precision training.
2. To teach the concept of squeeze and release.
3. To teach sorting.
4. To teach the concept of more or less
5. To teach counting.
6. To develop the child's patience, perseverance and concentration skills


1. 1 plate containing a handful of three different types of beans such as black beans, mung beans and soy beans

2. 3 different color containers for sorting the black beans, mung beans and soy beans

3. 1 pair of tweezers

4. 1 Tray


1. Demonstrate by transferring the bean one-by-one from the plate into the respective container.

2. Encourage your child to try.

3. During the activity, take the opportunity to talk about the colors of the beans, the size of the beans, count the beans as they are being placed in the container, talk about which container contains the most beans.

Additional Information:

J (3Y0M27D) tried this activity for the first time this evening 1 April 2012. I wasn't sure if he was ready for such work in precision. J was attracted to the cute containers that I bought, and asked to put things inside it. I took the opportunity to try out this activity. He could do it well. It was also training his patience. It took a long time, as there were so many beans. The next time we do this activity, I should not put so many beans on the plate/cover. J did well in terms of perseverance, but he could do better. He completed all the black beans, because he wanted me to use it to make him black bean soup, which I promised him. It was a long time ago, since I made black bean soup. The last time was when he was 1.5 or 2 years old. I am touched that he could remember it and asked for it.

For precision training, use adult tweezers. Introduce this activity when your child has tried transferring bigger items and with easier equipment such as tongs. This activity is very good for training patience, perseverance and concentration skills, all of which are qualities required to get your child ready for school.

This activity would also be suitable to train and improve concentration skills in children with ADHD, because it is very structured, simple and not overwhelming and requires concentration from the child. But take it slowly and don't give up. Day-by-day, physical concentration activities would slowly develop the underdeveloped part of the brain of children with ADHD, helping it to be more and more developed. I wished wished wished I had tried this my nephew 10 years ago, sigh with sadness.

Although I am using cute containers here, it is not necessary to get fanciful containers, and don't let it prevent you from introducing this activity, if you don't have them. You can still be very effective at introducing this activity with free materials such as saving the take-away containers the next time you eat out at food courts, food containers, bowls, plates, etc. house hold items easily found at home. You can also substitute the tweezers with chopsticks, eyebrow tweezers, etc. from your home. This activity can be as cheap or as expensive as you make it out to be. However, if you are like me, who has a soft spot for cute Japanese containers, and don't know where to find them, you can get them from Amazon's links below. You can also get the adult tweezers from Amazon:

1 comment:

  1. Thank you so much for sharing everything, you are such a role model!


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