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What Is The Purpose Of Sensorial Area At A Montessori?

The name Sensorial comes from “sense or senses”. These lessons are given to the child to help them figure out different impressions given by the senses. The materials in a sensorial area are specifically designed to help children develop skills for distinction, order and to broaden and refine the senses.

The Sensorial area of the Montessori classrooms at Applebee focus on lessons that help develop the five senses: Seeing, hearing, tasting, touching, and smelling. They also help children learn how to clarify, classify, and understand the world around them.  All the materials have what is called the “control of error” which is built in “feedback” system that allows the child to see what needs to be corrected in their work.  Our guides encourage children to be independent of the oversights in their own work which develops their confidence and provides an incentive to continue to practice and improve their learning. By working with the Sensorial materials, a child develops perceptions that allow him to become capable of comprehending abstract concepts.

The Sensorial area is divided into 8 groups — Visual, Tactile, Baric, Thermic, Auditory, Olfactory and Gustatory & Stereognostic.

The Visual group allows for the child to learn to visually discriminate the differences between similar and differing objects. Lessons in this group include the Pink Tower and Broad Stairs, as well as Knobbed and Knobless cylinders and Red Rods.

Tactile lessons teach the child to learn through their sense of touch. Children mainly will use their fingertips while handling materials in these lessons to allow them to feel objects through a small, concentrated part of their body, limiting distractions.  The materials in these groups include mystery bags and touch boards.

In Baric lessons children learn to feel the difference in pressure or weight of different objects.  Baric Tablets are among the materials found in these lessons.

Thermic materials work to refine a child’s sense of temperature. We do this by introducing the Thermic Bottles and Tablets.

Auditory lessons show children how to discriminate between different sounds by using the Sound Boxes.

Olfactory and Gustatory lessons are simply lessons designed to develop the sense of smell and taste. We introduce Smelling and Tasting jars in this area.  

Finally, we have Stereognostic, this group of lessons allows children to feel objects and make recognitions based on what they feel, also known as muscle memory.

Sensorial lessons can even be found at home, through exploration of the environment. For example, you can accompany your child on walk around the neighborhood as you walk ask them what different shapes and colors they see. Are the objects they are seeing big or small? Do they feel rough or smooth? Do the objects smell good or bad? By continuing to instill Montessori at home you are helping to prepare your child to become a logical, aware, and perceptive individual.


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