Sunday, June 5, 2011

Floor Scrubbing 101 (Montessori Style)

I am very much enjoying the review of Care of Environment lessons as I prepare for my Oral Examinations at the end of June.  While the children in my class have been introduced to Table and Chair Washing, Window Cleaning and Washing the Easel, they have not been introduced to the formal lesson of Floor Scrubbing.  The main reason being is that our classroom floor is all hardwood and does not include tile - anywhere.  Enter my kitchen floor at home!

I really wanted to put together this lesson for several reasons.  Firstly, I wanted to practice the sequence of steps of the presentation of the lesson in preparation for the exam.  Secondly, I wanted to see if plain baking soda could really clean the grime on my floor.  Thirdly, what a great way to have my own kids help out at home!

Here are the materials I assembled on a tray with a mat underneath:
On the tray: electrical tape, scissors, glass bowl with baking soda-filled shaker placed inside, sponge in small dish, scrub brush, small towel.  Underneath:  mat on which to place materials in use.

To begin, the child uses the tape and scissors to mark off one square on the tile...

...like this.  The laying of the tape provides a meaningful point of interest for the child.  Once this is done, the child then places the items on the mat from left to right:  bowl, jar with baking soda, sponge, brush, and towel.  (This picture does not show the brush and towel on the mat...)

Once the child fills the bowl with water, he then wets the sponge and wipes the surface of the squared-off tile using a top-bottom, left-right motion.  Then, baking soda is sprinkled onto the square.


Next, the child scrubs with the brush in a circular motion moving from top-bottom, left-right.

Scrubbing complete - Can't you already see the difference?


Now the child wets the sponge and wipes the square clean, re-wetting as necessary, using the same movement as before with sponge.

The square is dried with small towel...

...Clean tile revealed! 
Proof that plain baking soda and a good scrub works best!  Now, there are only about 699 tiles left...

In all seriousness, this is yet another Montessori Practical Life lesson which not only builds concentration, coordination, independence and order, but it also trains the eye in movement from left to right in preparation for reading and writing.  Additionally, the lesson promotes the use of both fine and gross motor skills.

Now that the materials are set up, they have a designated shelf in my pantry at home. When I get a few minutes here or there, all I have to do is grab the tray and do a few tiles at a time.  The boys added it to their list of  "Saturday Chores" and have agreed to complete a few tiles at time as well!  Our kitchen floor will finally get the scrub-down its needed for along time...

12 comments:

  1. Your description is so inviting that the first thing when I turn off my computer will be to go and prepare this marvelous tray. My kitchen floor will be delighted :-) Thank you for sharing.
    Ewa

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  2. Hi Ewa! Thank you - I'm so glad to hear that this post has been useful to you. Beware that the scrubbing can become very addicting. Once you complete one tile, you won't be able to stop!
    Sasha

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  3. I love this. What is the mat made out of?

    Melanie

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    1. Hi Melaine,
      Thanks! The mat is made of a kitchen "cutting board," the kind that is sold in the kitchen supplies... I simply cut it in half and lined the edges with colored tape. Hope this helps!

      Sasha

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  4. When I read your article and saw how you’ve arranged all the things you needed, I was like, “Is that really necessary if you’re cleaning your floor tiles?” But yeah, I’m pleased with the results as much as you are. Although doing it manually would require a lot of time, I’m pretty sure it’s all worth it once you finish all 700 tiles. Good luck!

    Kylee Groves

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  5. That looks challenging. Haha! I would really just like to commend anyone, and I mean anyone, who would even dare contemplate a brush as a means of scrubbing a floor. I take a look at one, and I'm taken aback already. Maybe because I would rather get a good scrubber to finish up huge areas quick. But that's just me.

    MinuteManIntl.com

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  6. What a fabulous idea! I will be adding this in the classroom.
    What kind of tape did you use; I'm concerned about the sticky mess left behind? Theire is reposition all tape and painters tape available.

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  7. No sticky mess - just lots of children wanting to use the tape...! :-) I happen to use colored electrical tape because I had some left over from another project. I'm sure the painters tape would be fine as well. I also recommend something cheap because the children go through it very quickly.

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  8. It's a bit embarrassing to admit, but I used to think that the electric tape is used to peel off some of the grimes stuck in between the tiles. Haha! The purpose of creating a point of interest for a child seems legit though. Good thing your tiles are large or else taping the sides would tire you, even before you started scrubbing. :D

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    Replies
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  10. Can I ask where do you put the white chopping board when its on the workshelf

    ReplyDelete