Montessori materials can be quite expensive to buy, but there are some that you can easily make yourself — for free!
The color tablets are one such material. I’m a bit of a snob, so I did buy Color Boxes 1 and 2 [for matching the colors], but I decided to make Color Box 3 myself from paint chips that I picked up at Lowe’s. [If you’re even snobbier than I am, you can buy the full set here.]
The traditional Color Box 3 includes shades of all of the colors. L is just two and a half, so I decided to start with just one color. Her favorite color is purple, so I picked up a few strips of purple paint chips and cut out each color for this easy DIY Montessori activity.
To present this work, I took all of the tablets out and placed them at random on the table. I pulled out the darkest and lightest tablets and placed them side by side, pointing out the difference. I then put them back with the rest of the tablets. We first searched for the darkest tablet, and placed it to the left. We looked at the pile again, and found the next darkest. We continued in this manner until they were all lined up from left to right [beginning reading skills, by the way!]. This is VERY challenging for a toddler, so L does still get some of the lighter colors mixed up. Color Box 3 is a great sensorial exercise to develop visual discrimination skills and ordering. When L has mastered purple, I’ll move on to another color until she can do all of them.
P.S. Please ignore the baby photobomber. 🙂