Being a Montessori mom, I tried to delay fairy tales as long as I could. Research shows that most children before the age of five are unable to differentiate between real and fictitious characters and situations, which is why talking animals and fairy tales are not found in a Montessori classroom. "Children develop their imaginative and creative powers through hands-on experiences in the real world."
The reality is...princess stuff has crept into our world through gifts, hand-me-downs, and even items I've purchased. In the spirit of finding balance between fantasy and reality, I offer a blend....
|A fairy tale|
|A fairy tale brought to life|
A Cinderella sensory bin that appeals to all five senses:
Cyndi-ella Sensory Poem:
I hear the Cinderella tale
I feel the glass slipper on my foot
I see the tale come to life
I smell my princess perfume
I taste my Cinderella Pez candy
|ella grace perfume made with essential oils on a cotton ball and sprinkled with fairy dust|
Like Maria Montessori, I believe it's important to "Follow the child."
I also believe it's important to incorporate the wonder and awe of the natural world in whatever philosophy you follow.
Update: Troy put Ella to bed tonight. She wasn't asleep when he left the room, so he left the door slightly ajar. When he went back in later to check on her, she had retrieved her Cinderella book and flashlight from her book shelf across the room--and fell asleep in the glow of "happily ever after."