Disclosure: This post contains affiliate links (at no cost to you).
One of Z’s (3 years old) math work is the Montessori Short Bead Stair work, among other Montessori Math activities.
What is the Montessori Short Bead Stair lesson?
It is one of the earliest lessons in a Montessori math curriculum.
The Montessori math colors are consistent across all work to help the child grasp math concepts, especially in more advanced work later on. In the beginning, he’s not familiar with the colors so he still needs to count carefully.
Here’s a sneak peek of what comes after this work:
- Understanding and building teens (11-19) quantity (using beads)
- Understanding and building teens (11-19) numerals
- Associating the concrete quantity with the numerals
- Squaring and cubing work
- And more …
How to do the Montessori Short Bead Stair work
I started by showing Z the Montessori short beads and counting them together. After we counted them, I showed him how to place it in a triangle formation.
Then we work on quantity and symbol (numeral) correspondence. He lays out the wooden numbers in order, and matches the beads to the numbers.
Here is the written lesson for your reference.
Here’s a video of Z doing the Montessori short bead stair work. (The first half of the video shows him arranging the beads in a triangle formation, the second half shows him matching the bead bars to the numerals.)
Here are the Montessori Short Bead colors:
- 1 – red
- 2 – green
- 3 – pink
- 4 – yellow
- 5 – light blue
- 6 – lavender
- 7 – white
- 8 – brown
- 9 – dark blue
- 10 – gold
How to DIY the Montessori Short Bead:
This is one work that you can easily DIY! Using pony beads aren’t perfect because they aren’t perfectly spherical, but I think they work just as well. The colors aren’t critical as long as you are consistent in all your lessons, but I suggest using the traditional Montessori colors simply because there are a ton of free printable resources out there that use these colors and it will just make your life easier not having to recreate your own.
Where to buy the Montessori Short Bead:
Amazon has one for only $5 at the time of writing, but it only comes with one set.
Here’s the teen bead bar box from Amazon – this can be used for this exercise as well as learning teens (11-19).
Montessori Short Bead Resources & Ideas:
- Printables from Montessori Print Shop
- Math using bead stairs (Pinay Homeschooler)
- Bead activities (Pinay Homeschooler)
I’m definitely going to borrow some of Pinay Homeschooler’s extension ideas, but that is an activity for Z for another day.