Thank You's for August 2012
Montessori-Inspired Music Appreciation: Swan Lake

DIY Spindle Boxes

I thought today would be a good day for a DIY Montessori project … it is Labor Day after all! ;) Spindle boxes are part of the Montessori math curriculum, but they’re a material homeschoolers will often be much happier making than buying. While the spindle boxes are important in Montessori schools, they typically aren’t a popular material.

Spindle boxes were one of the least-used materials when I had a Montessori school. They were rarely used except for the times when I introduced them to a child or asked a child to work with me on the spindle boxes.

The spindle boxes have important purposes of reinforcing the idea that the symbols represent certain quantities of separate objects, introducing the concept of zero and its symbol, and reinforcing the sequence of the numerals. They’re also an indirect preparation of the concept that only the only numerals used in our system of math are 0-9.

The traditional spindle boxes are two boxes divided into five compartments each. One box has the numerals 0-4 at the back of the compartments; the other box has the numerals 5-9 at the back of the compartments. There are also 45 spindles in a basket or box and 9 ties or elastics. Today, many spindle boxes consist of just one box with the numerals 0-9.

Purchased Spindle Box for a Montessori School (Photo from Leptir)

Purchased Spindle Box for a Montessori School (Photo from Leptir)

You can buy or make the set of 2 spindle boxes or one spindle box for the numerals 0-9. Here are some ideas for making your own spindle box(es):

DIY Montessori Spindle Boxes

Maybe Montessori made a spindle box for $2.54 by using an unpainted wood tray, wooden slats, stick-on numbers, and wooden dowels.

DIY Spindle Boxes (Photo from Making Montessori Ours)

DIY Spindle Boxes (Photo from Making Montessori Ours)

Making Montessori Ours made spindle boxes from dollar store boxes, paint stir stick dividers, vinyl numerals, and cut-down chopsticks.

Spindle Box (Photo from What DID We Do All Day?)

Spindle Box (Photo from What DID We Do All Day?)

What DID We Do All Day? made spindle boxes from photo boxes, balsa wood dividers, stick-on numerals, and Popsicle sticks.

My Little Princess World made spindle boxes from an ice stick tray, stickers with handwritten numerals, and bamboo skewers.

Montessori on a Budget made a spindle box from toilet paper rolls, board, handwritten numerals, and sticks.

Montessori Mum made a spindle box from a mooncake box, recycled cardboard partitions, stick-on numerals, and straws.

DIY Spindle Boxes (Photo from Mi Escuelita Montessori)

DIY Spindle Boxes (Photo from Mi Escuelita Montessori)

Mi Escuelita Montessori made spindle boxes from inexpensive plastic baskets, computer-generated numerals, and straws.

The Free Child made spindle boxes from stackable boxes, wooden dividers, chipboard numerals, and wooden dowels.

Pyjama School made spindle boxes from divided plastic boxes from the craft store, computer-generated numerals, and wooden dowels.

Mama Jenn used water bottle ice trays, a labeler machine to make numerals, and Q-tips.

Create made a portable spindle “box” made with felt and wooden spindles.

54 Stitches made a fabric spindle “box” made with fabric and wooden spindles.

Handmade Montessori has “stick pockets” made with fabric and wooden spindles.

Montessori By Hand has a tutorial for spindle box ties.

Claudia Porta used wooden sticks, a piece of paper divided into sections for 0-9, and rubber bands.

Spindle Box Presentation

YouTube Preview Image

Montessori Primary Guide has a spindle box presentation (and the above video).

Spindle Box Presentation (Photo from Leptir)

Spindle Box Presentation (Photo from Leptir)

Leptir has a detailed spindle box presentation and photos.

Montessori Monday Link-Up

Montessori MondayIf you have some Montessori activity trays/lessons to share, please link up below. It’s fine to link up a post from your archives – and you may link up anytime during the week! Your post may be any Montessori-inspired activity or idea. It doesn’t need to be related to my Montessori Monday post.

Link up your exact post URL so that we can find your activity if we return to the linky at a later date (which I often do when I’m looking for activities for a roundup post). I publish the Montessori Monday post and linky at 6:00 a.m. EST each Monday and keep the linky open throughout the week.

Please place the Montessori Monday button (using the code from the right sidebar) in your post or put a link back to this post. Let’s use Montessori Monday to gain inspiration/ideas and to encourage each other! If you would leave an encouraging comment on the post linked up ahead of you (along with any other posts you’re drawn to), that would be awesome! Thanks for participating!

Note: If you have a giveaway on your blog, please add it to my Family-Friendly Giveaway Linky Page! If you enjoy entering giveaways, you’ll always find some great giveaways there. And don’t miss the Montessori music materials giveaway sponsored by Montessori Print Shop – 2 Winners – 9 Music Materials from Montessori Print Shop Store! Giveaway ends Thursday, September 6, at 10:01pm MST, open worldwide, Rafflecopter.

Also, if you’ve ever been linked to in one of my roundup posts, please feel free to grab the “Featured on” badge.



Linked to Tuesday Tots, The Mommy Club Resources and Solutions at Milk and Cuddles and Crystal & Co. , The Weekly Kid’s Co-op, Living Life Intentionally Linky Party, Preschool Corner, Saturday Show & Tell, Show-and-Share Saturday, The Sunday Showcase, and Link & Learn.

Vote For Us @ Top Mommy Blogs

Thank You's for August 2012
Montessori-Inspired Music Appreciation: Swan Lake
Latest Comments
  1. Randalin ( from HarvestingKale)
  2. DianeMargaret
    • DianeMargaret
      • Deb
        Twitter:

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

CommentLuv badge

This blog uses premium CommentLuv which allows you to put your keywords with your name if you have had 2 approved comments. Use your real name and then @ your keywords (maximum of 3)