Sunday, April 13, 2008

Carrot Work - Washing, Peeling, Cutting and Serving

This is the time of the year that I present carrot work as it is the golden bead work of the Practical Life area. By this I mean that many of the Practical Life skills aquired throughout the year are required to achieve this singular work: washing, peeling, cutting and serving.

I had placed the tray used with this work on the shelf about a month ago but not the materials. I do this sometimes to signify that the place is being held for future work. I also do it as a preliminary exercise in place holding - the tray has nothing on it but it is holding a place . Does this sound familiar? It is what zero does. Zero is nothing, but it holds a place. The empty tray is representative of this mathematical concept.

Two weeks ago, I gave the carrot work presentation. There are many steps. Overall, the children have followed each of them with only a few reminders of what comes next. I put images of two childrens work together to give a fuller account of the work and that is why there are two different placemats.

Starting at the middle and working down, the child scrubs the carrot; then the other half.

The children love to see how dirty the water gets.

They now return the bowl, after emptying the water, the pitcher and the vegetable scrubber to the tray so as to make room on the table for the small plate for peels and the serving dish. Note: I have the children rinse the vegetable scrubber and place it on the tray with the brushes up so as to dry more efficiently.

The child begins peeling at the middle of the carrot and peels away from their hand. This is very important as they are never to draw the peeler up towards their hand as it may result in an injury. After the child has peeled the lower half of the carrot, they filp the carrot and peel that half.

The child then cuts the carrot after removing the peels and placing them in a small dish which will be emptied into the trash or into a compost pile.

The child then serves the other children who are not participating in a group or individual lesson.

1 comment:

Deb Chitwood said...

I love your description of carrot work as "the golden bead work of the Practical Life area"! And I love your photos and detailed description of the activity. I featured your post and carrot peeling photo in my Montessori-Inspired Food Preparation post at