Saturday 28 July 2012


Montessori Activity: Home-Made Trilingual Cards with Real Objects

Age: From 3 years old

Duration: 5 - 15 minutes

1. To provide a concrete way to teach language

1. Wheat
2. 3 pieces of unwanted name cards.
3. 1 marker pen
4. 1 tray

1. Write the name of the object, e.g. wheat in each language (for us, it is English, Chinese and Danish)

2. Put the object (wheat) on top, and the name cards below the object.

3. Teach using the Montessori 3 Period Lesson method:
  • Step 1: Point to the wheat and the English word and read it to your child. For example, say "This is wheat."

  • Step 2: Say the English word, "wheat" and ask your child to point it out. Example, "Show me wheat."

  • Step 3: Point to the English word and ask him what it is. For example, ask "What is this?" Your child should say 'wheat'.
3. Repeat the step 1 - 3 with the other two languages.


Take a picture of your presentation. Print it and collate your own sets of trilingual cards for future use in games such as matching. Here is a trilingual card we have made from this lesson. You can also print this card for your use (if you don't mind having the Danish word for wheat in it):

Additional Information:
A child learns best by seeing, touching and manupulating an object. Match words with experience and experience with words. Yesterday we passed by a wheat field and gathered a couple of wheat stalks. I am using wheat to illustrate the 3-period lesson on language. This is an attempt to let Joshua get to know wheat personally, by touching and exploring it by for example, removing the corn, turn it into flour by grinding it in a blender, and then make into bread, etc.

If you live in Singapore and does not have wheat field, you can still use real objects to teach word and vocabulary, instead of simply showing picture. You can teach the word rice by letting your child (who are no longer mouthing) to play with rice, pouring rice, etc.

Keep things simple and economical. It doesn't matter if you don't have unwanted namecards, just write the word on a piece of paper and show it to your child together with the real object.

Happy playing and learning languages!


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