The shopping season is upon us!
On this site, I will only share with you the companies I find the most useful. I’m a very particular person; I don’t like wasting time or resources on frivolous purchases! Today I want to tell you about a company I have been a happy customer of for many years: Montessori Services.
Setting up a Montessori school-room used to be a ton of work. Today, it a whole lot easier. In recent years, a few companies have realized the importance of making the necessary (and desirable) materials readily available. Not only do the schools benefit, but all homes with young children can have improved environments with these hard-to-find materials now accessible with just a few clicks on the internet!
One of the very first of these companies was founded in Pennsylvania by Jane Mills Campbell, an AMI-trained Primary Montessori teacher. The original Montessori Services School Catalog was created with a simple goal: make it easy and cost-effective to find the specialized items used in the Montessori classroom. Jane’s “kitchen table” business grew steadily, moving cross-country by school bus (yes, by school bus) to the Campbell’s California garage, from the garage to a small storefront. They are new in their fourth location near downtown Santa Rosa, about one hour north of the Golden Gate Bridge.
Originally the company provided materials for Montessori schools, but the teachers began requesting more materials for the parents to purchase and use in the home environment. These requests led to the production of a catalog called For Small Hands:
For Small Hands gives parents access to many of the same child-size items children use at school, enabling children to participate in the home environment with the same ease and success they enjoy in the [Montessori] classroom. We strive to delight young children with real tools that let them handle real tasks “all by myself!” Our hard-to-find, child-size items allow them to pour their own juice or rake leaves by your side, purposeful “work” that supports self-confidence and independence. From a pitcher to fit small hands to open-ended games, toys, and crafts that call on spatial, motor, or problem-solving skills, we make sure every item provides an enriching opportunity.
Montessori Services now has 16 staff members working together to help you find just the right materials for your child’s home environment. They sell individual items as well complete activity sets, as shown in these images. Enjoy looking through one of their free catalogs, not just during this current shopping season, but all year long!