Many of us like to limit the time toddlers and preschoolers spend on technology. So when we travel, go to restaurants, or spend time in waiting rooms, it’s nice to have some fun, hands-on activities to entertain young children … and ideally give them learning opportunities at the same time. Activity bags are a perfect way to take Montessori on the go.
Easy-to Prepare Activity Bags
I have a “grandma bag” I like to take on family gatherings. It’s actually a large camera bag that’s designed to be a purse as well. I like to bring my DSLR camera on family outings. (I am the family paparazzi, after all!) I like to bring a number of activity bags with me as well. Here’s my granddaughter, Zoey, working with some at Sunday brunches. She always enjoys the activity bags!
Materials Used in the Pictured Restaurant Activity Bags + More
- Pencil Pouches (These are awesome because they’re attractive, durable, lightweight, and uniform in size. The rings make it easy to add a binder ring to hold them together. They’re stackable, so they’re perfect for a tote bag.)
- 1½” binder ring for fastening pencil pouches together (I often use these for making homemade books as well.)
- Stitching Block from Montessori Services
- Safari Ltd. TOOB figures (Insect TOOB and Dino Babies TOOB)
- Insect TOOB key and Dino Babies TOOB key for printing (Any of the Safari Ltd. TOOBS with TOOB keys work well.)
- Cardstock for printing (I don’t laminate these because they’re easier to fold when they’re not laminated. You can just fold an 8½x11″ page in half, and it’ll fit in the pencil pouch. You can laminate the printables if you wish, but I personally don’t bother with lamination for activity bags.)
- In the fourth activity bag in my grandma bag, I typically have miniature children’s books or handmade books.
- I sometimes have an activity bag with crayon rocks and some paper.
Adding Activity Bags to a Parent Bag, Grandma Bag, or Nanny Bag
This is my grandma bag, which I am totally in love with! It’s a camera bag/purse that can carry a camera, laptop, and almost anything else. I don’t use it as a laptop bag because I carry activity bags in that section (although you can move the dividers around as needed). I love that it protects my camera and is the perfect bag for plane trips as well as family outings. Update: The one I have is no longer available, but you can find a variety of ideas and prices of multi-compartment camera bags here.
If you don’t need to protect a laptop or camera, there are lots of inexpensive but cool-looking diaper bags that work great for toddler and preschooler activities on the go.
More Montessori-Inspired Activity Bags
Free Travel Printables and Montessori-Inspired Travel Activities (free printables for making a variety of activity bags for travel)
Traveling with Kids – Montessori-Inspired Activities (roundup with lots of Montessori-inspired activity bags and other transportable activities)
Learn more about my eBook Montessori at Home or School: How to. Teach Grace and Courtesy!
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