FAQs on the Montessori Knobbed Cylinder Blocks for Twos and Threes
I've been looking for some information on when to introduce the pink tower, brown stairs and knobbed cylinders. I have found info on their purposes, but not much on when and how to intro them. I have seen mini versions of these materials (with only half the steps, tower pieces or cylinders) in the toddler section of montessori shops online but they don't have any age suggestions. Can you please suggest a good source for info and activities?
Big Grey Mare / Foter / CC BY-NC-ND
Pink Tower: age 2.5 to 3. They can be hard for a tot to pick up, and the smaller pieces can be a choking hazard. Try stacking cereal boxes or egg cartons under the age of 2 as an indirect preparation for the Pink Tower at age 2 or 3. (Don't by a small Pink Tower, save your money and get the regular one and introduce it age 2.5.)
Brown Stairs are a little more challenging, age 3 and up. Children love to make a tower with the Brown Stairs! Age 3.5 to 4 is a good age for that! (Again, don't buy the short version.)
Knobbed Cylinders: You don't need to buy the mini versions. They come in sets of four. Introduce the first block at age 2 or 2.5. The blocks get harder (so 2 is harder than 1, etc.).
I read somewhere the block 2 should be introduced first?
Do you know where you can buy the cylinders individually?
I used Block One for my son, first, and it was the one we chose to give lessons on to 2.5 to 3-year-olds. But if a parent does not have Block One (same height, differ in width from thick to thin), they can certainly use Block Two.
I could not find them separately when I went to buy them, you'd have to try Ebay or a Facebook group for Montessori materials.
Montessori info on Cylinder Blocks:
Material: Four Wooden Blocks containing ten cylinders each. Each block is different in two, three, or one dimension, this being the order in which the child is to work with them. Presentation of Color Block One: differs in two dimensions, height remains the same; language "thick, thin."
Note: This presentation is given only with Cylinder Block One. Once the child has worked with it sufficiently, he may work through the remaining three without a lesson.
Control of Error: Visual in material.
Direct Aim: Visual discrimination of dimensions.
Indirect Aim: Preparation for writing and mathematics.
Age: Two and one-half to three.
CYLINDER BLOCK ONE
Differs in two dimensions, height remains the same.
Language: Thick, Thin.
CYLINDER BLOCK TWO
All dimensions change from thinnest is tallest, thickest is shortest.
Language: Thin, Tall, Thick, Short, Broad, Narrow.
CYLINDER BLOCK THREE
All dimensions change from thinnest is shortest, thickest is tallest.
Language: Thin, Short, Thick, Tall, Deep, Shallow.
CYLINDER BLOCK FOUR
Only the height changes.
Language: Tall, Short.
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