Wheaton Montessori News
The Pink Tower is one of the iconic Montessori lessons; it’s one of the first lessons tackled by the youngest students in a Primary class. It calls to them as a familiar play activity – blocks! Understanding that children love to challenge themselves while they play, Dr. Montessori incorporated this childhood favorite in the form of The Pink Tower as a way to teach children a variety of concepts.
While building the Pink Tower, young students learn words such as “large” and “small,” and assign the words to the concept and size using a concrete material (the blocks). They go on to learn superlatives: small, smaller, smallest and large, larger, largest. They learn order, balance, and patience as they stack the cubes from largest to smallest (or smallest to largest for a big challenge!). The learn patience and precision as they work to build the Tower in a particularly order. Remember – Montessori materials are made to provide feedback without a teacher’s intervention. A child can practice over and over without interruption until – aha! – he’s done it!
And when a child has mastered the Pink Tower, it can continue to provide lessons to older children. Blindfolded, the rely entirely on their tactile senses while concentrating on the earlier learned concepts: Which block feels larger? Which block is smaller? Have I balanced the next block so that the tower won’t fall? Am I being careful? See Micky in the pictures below; take a look at his face in these images: total concentration as he feels for the next block, comparing it to the other choices left.
After carefully feeling across his work rug, Micky attempts to carefully continue building the tower:
Students will also use the Broad Stair and the Cylinder Blocks blindfolded, further exploring their tactile senses and building up their perseverance.