Captivate your child's attention and imagination!
When I studied the Montessori method I found no mention of 'liquid timers' or 'liquid spirals' in the textbooks. My appreciation of these items came through years of 'on-the-floor' experience in a Montessori classroom. There is something about the smooth, soothing motion of the liquid drops that simply seems to delight and captivate children.
I have found these useful in a multitude of ways. Our prepared classroom environment is dotted with liquid timers and it always interests me to watch how different children interact with these. I find that children who are usually restless or unfocused tend to spend prolonged periods watching the bubbles, almost as though they are hypnotised by the beautiful motions. I notice that tired children use the liquid timers as a self-soothing tool as they relax and rest. Sad or anxious children are often distracted and delighted by the beautiful bubbles. When I worked with a "Toddler Transition" group - where several children at a time would be starting the process of 'separating' from mum or dad to attend Montessori independently - the first thing I would do each morning was to ensure that the liquid timers were within easy access as they had such a wonderfully uplifting effect on the children.
The liquid timers are also useful as a visual representation of a finite period of time. Sometimes there are moments when we simply can't continue following the child's uninterrupted repetitions of activity because there is a transition that needs to be made or an appointment to be kept. If your child, or your class, struggles to accept verbal reminders (such as "we need to go in one minute!" or "one more turn then you need to stop!") then the liquid timer be used as a definitive external reminder - "When the timer runs out it is time to go"!
I have also used the liquid timers to represent a period of time for our 'Silence Game'. This game involves inviting children to create a 'Silence' by ensuring that their voices and bodies make absolutely no sound at all. The period for this game can be defined in a number of ways - for example, I often use my fingers to count out 10 seconds of silence or we switch the lights off at the start of the silence and only turn them back on when the silence is finished. My class has also enjoyed using liquid timers for this game - we create a silence for as long as it takes for the timer to run out!
I have also found the liquid timers to be particularly important to my work with children with additional needs. In particular, children who have sensory processing issues seem to respond well to the predictable, rhythmic and flowing motion and it provides a subtle, engaging opportunity to refine visual-tracking skills.
We offer three different types of liquid timers - please see the gallery images - at $10 each!
Please note: The Spiral Timer comes in 3 different colours (purple, pink,blue) which are picked by 'lucky dip'. If you choose this item and have a specific colour preference please include this in the special comments section of your order and we will attempt to accommodate your choice (stock allowing).