Montessori: The Prepared Child · Montessori: The Prepared Environment

Cubby Baskets

Fostering independence in the 6-9 year old does not happen easily or coincidentally, but rather it is a very purposeful work on the part of the teacher. In our classroom, properly prepared and maintained cubby baskets are part of this purposeful planning.

When I entered my current classroom, our cubby basket system was already in place and oh my! How I thank Cheryl and her colleagues for crafting it! After implementing this system in LE and UE, I am convinced that it may be the best system for maintaining student supplies. After all, if we are working to truly foster independence and responsibility in our children then it must begin with the small things.

This system instills in children an innate responsibility for their supplies and learning tools. Granted, it takes time, and requires much work on the part of the teacher. Instilling independence always does though! ;D But when we foster responsibility and independence in the small things then they will carry over into the big things….and this is one of the many small things.


Each cubby basket holds 2 sharpened pencils, a set of colored pencils that is bound by a rubber band, 1 eraser, 1 glue stick and a pair of scissors. Each item is labelled with the child’s name. That’s right, each item! 😳😉😊 The older children come in with most of this completed on the first day and they help the younger ones label all of their belongs. Some beautiful collaboration and mentoring takes place in a purposefully and organic manner. ❤️

This organizational system ensures that children have what they need to be successful during lessons and work cycles. It also places appropriate responsibility on the child to care for his supplies and learning.


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