The thing about cleaning out materials is that your children rediscover them. This is what happened a few days ago, when I pulled out the homemade landforms. J-jo wanted to know what the plasticene was doing in the containers. It was past bedtime so I promised I would set it up on a mat for him in the schoolroom for the next morning.
Our landforms are not pretty, but the kids don’t seem to mind. I would much prefer owning these:
but these are what we have:
I introduced them all at once, although, per Montessori, I should have just done one pair. However, he retained their names fairly well (second part of a three part lesson – recognizing the landform if I called out its name), and tomorrow I plan on letting him choose only one pair to play with and learn.
The boats help. They are two tiny pieces of craft foam hot-glued together, with part of a toothpick with a triangular piece of paper as the sail. The landform cards are half upside down because J-jo kept walking all around the mat and I kept trying to turn the cards so they would be right-side up for him. Finally I just gave up.
J-jo liked pouring the water into the landforms and sailing his boat “around the cape,” or “in the lake” and so on. I think this is why he learned all the names so quickly. “Isthmus” sure is a mouthful to say.