If I had to pick just one type of work to stock my practical life shelves with, it would be sewing. I am NOT an accomplished sewer. Actually, I think it has been over a year since I pulled out my sewing machine, and then I prefer to make clothing with elasticized waists. But, when it comes to the classroom, I think nothing beats handwork.
Maria Montessori stated that the activities of practical life should be meaningful, looking around my classroom, I wanted to find activities that still had meaning for today’s children. Polishing is great, but how many children really see their parents polishing the silver place settings? Spooning, tonging, pouring and the like are quickly mastered when we leave the lessons simple and isolated on the tray. What materials could we use that would appeal to the 3 year-old and remained enticing through age 6 or beyond? Sewing.