Montessori Ideas: Embracing the Nature Museum

I have found myself very open to the new ideas that I have discovered through Montessori. One concept, however, has taken me nearly a year to embrace. It is the idea of creating a nature museum in your home. I first read about it in “How to Raise an Amazing Child (The Montessori Way)”. Author Tim Seldon defines this idea as “a nature area in your child’s room can be anything from a simple table of “finds” to aquariums and terrariums housing bugs, beetles, frogs, turtles, and other small animals he has found and invited back for a short stay.” When I first read about this idea I said a nice, “thanks but no thanks”. I just didn’t want the kids bringing things from the outside into our home. My Type A self just wasn’t having it. What I quickly realized was that although we did not have a space for nature, nature was still finding its way into my home. I found rocks, pine cones,  leaves, flowers, and more squirreled away in drawers or pockets. My kids were already collecting and by not providing a space for it I was creating the mess I was so scared of to begin with.

I have officially given in to the idea and we now have our very own nature museum that lives in my oldest’s room. It cost zero dollars. I found an old display bowl that has been used for various things throughout the years, but was currently collecting dust in a cabinet. My daughter and I then put all of the nature we found hidden around her room on the bowl. That’s it! Easy and effective. My son found a feather outside our front door and immediately took it to the museum to be displayed.

Rocks and feathers currently make up most of our museum, oh and a chunk of concrete because sometimes city kids can't tell the difference between part of a street and precious minerals.

Rocks and feathers currently make up most of our museum, oh and a chunk of concrete because sometimes city kids can’t tell the difference between a part of the street and precious minerals.

I am excited to see what kinds of things they add to their museum. I am also reminded that even things that don’t make sense to me but excite my kids should be given their fair chance.

My daughter investigating a shell she found on the way to the park.

My daughter investigating a shell she found on the way to the park.

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