Montessori Continent Box Making, Europe

 Montessori Continent Boxes are a well loved highly recognizable part of the Montessori Geography Curriculum.  For those who may not be familiar with Montessori Continent Boxes, they are very simple (or decorative) boxes/containers/bags of your choosing to house objects, cards and materials to represent each Continent.
The best part is that you can make your own!



Ours (like many you will find online) include various cultural objects, animal & landmark figures, and cards depicting daily life/homes/clothing/crafts, musical instruments, foods/crops, flags, animals,  and landmarks. Make these boxes your own - they can look like and contain anything you wish, anything you have.
These boxes can be very simple of quite involved, it just depends on what you are able to put together, and on your child's level of interest.



Our Europe Box Contents. Our card folders are very simple. I used red card stock and simply stapled them. I created our animal bags here.



This is a fantastic collection of early books for exploring our global community.




I personally have found that when my children were quite small their main interest was in various books, the globes, puzzle maps and only a few select materials from the boxes.

Listening to the Continent Song.There are many versions and you can check them out on You tube.


The puzzle maps are wonderful but large and it's expensive to collect them all, we luckily were gifted ours. If I hadn't been able to purchase all of the puzzles I would definitely have purchased the Continents Puzzle Map, Canada (as it is our country), and created pin maps for the rest. The choice is yours. You can print maps anywhere online, just find the ones you like best.
The cards I have included have control sheets of small labeled flags for each continent that are ready to be laminated (if you wish), and cut up to make your tiny flags.
I use long pins for ours, but you could use tooth picks as well.
The maps work better when they are not laminated, and placed over cork or foam mats for pinning the flags.
I have included a free set of flag cards for every continent. I chose to print one set of flag cards for the most part, and use the small sheets of flags as a control for matching.
This saved a TON of ink and printing, but choice again is yours.


There were many materials that I prepared early on not knowing when they would express interest in beyond the initial introductions. I was very excited to put these materials together, but slowly began to realize that following their interest and level of engagement was the most important thing for us, as with all things.
Your children may receive these materials completely differently, and be interested in everything very early on. My children there drawn to a few things (early on) that really grabbed their interest : animal figures and 3 part cards, land mark cards, figures, and family photos.
They loved doing anything crafty, looking at books, watching videos, and of course visiting museums.

Tracing Celtic Stencils



It is fun and interesting to watch Xander introducing Ava to the boxes again. They are having great fun with it. His interest has developed and evolved again as he is a little older now. He is also very focused on watching documentaries. I created many cards for our boxes because I was planning to use them moving forward into elementary, but if that is not your plan than having fantastic simple boxes early on worked so well for us.

Reading a book to Ava about Global Communities


Watching short landmark histories


Our cards also do include all of the landmarks you see above.




We have created a huge Continent Material Package that is available at our Shop that includes everything you will need and so much more! You can check it out here.  Every image and artwork was created or taken during our travels and family vacations thus are solely owned by Making Montessori Ours.



Your boxes/bags can be as large and elaborate as you wish to make them or very simple.  Often the boxes or bags (whatever you like). 







It is nice to have an atlas or a set of kids atlases to go along with the boxes.
You can include stamps and currency from around the world. There are many online and it's easy to print samples.
I was able to use many things from family and our travels, to add some interesting things into the boxes. It’s great if you can add family travel photos, souvenirs and postcards.
I did have many coins but in addition was able to purchase coins from every continent on Ebay, but you can also look at currency and everything imaginable online!

 If you wish to make your cards these images can be  found on Wiki Commons & Wikipedia or other free for personal use sites. These are image sharing sites where you can use images for your own personal use and finish your collection of cards for free! 

Antarctica is fun to do and quite easy to put together. We created a set for our own personal use that is not in our package. Our cards contain transportation, research stations, information cards for each, and animals. I was able to make everything for free from these sources. There are also lots of other free cards to finish your Antarctica box.


If you don't want to spend the money to purchase all of the animals for each continent (as if can get expensive), check out dollar stores for figures and toys you may already have. Perhaps you may only want to purchase a couple sets of animals or even none - just use the 3 part cards if you wish.





Thank you for visiting with us!



CONVERSATION

8 comments:

  1. These are amazing - bless you for sharing!

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    1. Bless you for commenting <3 Elementary Observations is an amazing blog! I look so forward to seeing your work!! Heading over to pin a few things now that I want to save for later and things I would love to share! http://elementaryobservations.blogspot.ca/

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  2. merci pour votre travail

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    Replies
    1. Thank you!! You are most welcome :)

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  3. OMGsh I just LOVE this! Thank you for taking the time to make these and make them available for free. Bless you!

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much for taking the time to comment I appreciate it very much! I hope you can make good use of the files :)

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I greatly appreciate your friendly comments and feedback. I love to see what others are making, so please feel free to include a links and share your site with us!!! If you have any questions regarding any of the materials we have made...I'd love to help!!! Thank you for visiting us:)

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