I LOVE Montessori land and water forms! But there are a few problems when it comes to acquiring them for homeschools and even many schools … they’re expensive, take up quite a bit of space, and aren’t the easiest materials to make. Fortunately, there are some very simple, inexpensive, and fun alternatives to traditional land and water forms.
Montessori Land and Water Forms
Nataša from Leptir has great photos and descriptions of the Montessori land and water forms as used in a Montessori school. Her post is helpful regardless of what type of land and water forms you choose.
Easy DIY Land and Water Forms
Some of the easiest land and water forms to prepare are ones that only require containers, sand, water, optional blue food coloring for the water, and whatever objects you’d like to add.
Montessori Nature also has land and water formations at the beach.
You don’t need to go to the beach, though. OurMontessoriHome.Wordpress.com has a similar type of activity that can be created using simple plastic containers with sand and water.
Three Little Rascals made land and water forms using instant mashed potatoes.
Discovery Moments created a simple version of DIY landforms using rocks and blue water.
Our Montessori Home also had DIY landforms using rocks and water. They had salt dough land and water forms as well.
Teach Beside Me made playdough landforms.
Read About Reading has affordable land and water forms using salt dough, paint, and paper plates.
The Land, Water, Air Toolbox from Montessori By Mom also has an easy-to-prepare sandpaper landform activity.
All of the activities are most effective with some sort of land and water form cards to use as models. You’ll find links to printables in an earlier roundup post of mine: Montessori-Inspired Fun with Land and Water Forms. You’ll also find links to other tutorials for DIY land and water forms if you’d like to make more traditional models. Those are wonderful if you have the space and would enjoy preparing them.
In the same post, you’ll find a recipe for land and water form snacks based on an activity I found online from Ashland Montessori School. It’s a fun extension to use with land and water form cards.
For a homeschool (and many school situations), I really like the idea of using outdoor land and water forms. If you’ve been following my blog, you know that I love outdoor environments for learning, and this is a great activity for an outdoor classroom.
And for a thorough description of how to introduce land and water forms and activities to extend the study of land and water forms, sign up for my mailing list (in my blog’s right sidebar) to receive the free American Montessori Society Geography Album by Karen Tyler. It’s a 177-page album covering Montessori geography activities for ages 2½-6!
I’d love to hear about your activities with land and water forms! 🙂
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