Oliver loves his school so much, he leaps out of bed in the morning to announce emphatically what lesson he hopes to get. When I pick him up in the carpool line at school at 3:30, he is so talkative and excited to tell me about what he accomplished, it’s often a (hilarious) struggle just to get a word in edgewise — and the words are often, “Oliver, I can’t wait to hear all about it, but you need to sit down and get buckled so we can move forward for the next person!”

Enthusiastic about Montessori would be the understatement of the year. I’m pretty sure this kid could be the Montessori spokesperson if anyone asked him. And it’s not just school in general. I think something has clicked with Oliver here — he was born for this type of education. I think he feels at home there in a way that is hard to explain.

The other day, Oliver asked me (quite accusingly, actually) “Mama, why don’t you ever let me wash the floors?” To which I replied, after almost spitting out my coffee, “I just never thought of it, Oliver! That’s a great idea!”


Our floors are often in need of washing because though I do sweep and vacuum a lot, I am not quick to mop. We used an eco-friendly general floor cleaner safe for wood (and little boys), a mixing bowl with warm water, and a cotton cloth (plus two towels for Oliver’s knees of course).


And though I have no idea how they teach the lesson at school, Oliver claims that his favorite “job” at school is table washing, followed by table drying. Similar tasks, I gather, that represent something useful to him right now.

It all got me wondering, why do we often view around-the-house tasks as mundane adult chores when they are often really interesting and important to our little ones? Maybe it’s the Cinderella complex? The thought that our precious littles should never be expected to scrub on hands and knees? But what fun! There is water, there are bubbles! They are contributing and learning and working, and according to Oliver, it’s “awesome.”

DSC_0047DSC_0054Happy Thursday. Our floors are clean.

9 thoughts on “Montessori-Inspired”
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  1. My own mother’s perfectionist cleaning tendencies meant that we pretty much never had chores because she needed things done her way. (It’s funny because I just wrote about that idea earlier this week.) Anyhow, we had a neighbor who would let me and my little sister come clean her floors and it felt like I was the real life incarnation of Pippi Longstockings.

  2. My oldest loves to clean floors! Especially our tile floors. We use this soft brush with a handle that makes a nice sound and satisfying amount of bubbles. When it’s time to clean the bathroom she always asks me to call her for floor duty when I’m done. Both girls also love doing the hardwood floors, but it’s a little easier with a spray cleaner and soft mop!

    I think floor duty (and dusting baseboards) are good kid tasks. Plus they can get down to that level -and back up-much easier.

    Clean floors in the winter is like the simplest luxury!

  3. I love this and yes that’s a great question, why don’t we do that?! I will try this with my boys this weekend, I bet it will be a big hit.


  4. I just have to say I love what you said about Montessori. I wanted to be a Montessori teacher many years ago, as I am a hands on learner. What a great way to learn, but to dig in and try something. I home schooled my children when they were younger and baking always took longer, because we would talk about fractions and chemistry and the art of following a recipe. Someone told me the other day that it took them forever to put together a Lego set for their children Christmas Eve. What fun is that? Aren’t Legos for the kids to put together? Follow instructions? Anyway, it looks like Oliver is having a blast cleaning the floors. Wonder what he will come up with next? Cleaning out the refrigerator? or helping with the closets? Can you send him my way to help me? hahaha. Just kidding.

  5. This is awesome! Growing up one of my little cousin’s favorite things in the world was to sweep. He loved to mop as well. My brother and I thought it was weird, but our favorite thing was math quizzes, which my mom would only play with us as a reward. ha!

  6. That is great! Sometimes it is just the simplest things that make kids happy. They really want to contribute and take pride in their work when doing so.

    When my niece visited over Thanksgiving, she helped me make the whipped cream and boy was she proud!

  7. I love this! And I love Oliver’s joy and enthusiasm. Montessori does seem fitting for him. Grahm is much the same way as far as enthusiasm is concerned. My mother in law got us a book, “Clark the Shark.” It’s more or less about loving life (oh, and knowing when to tone it down). You should check it out!

  8. Our kids love sweeping, but we’ve never had them actually wash the floors. It looks like such fun, maybe a good chore for one of these many snow days!

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