We’ve also created a detailed Montessori material list to help you set up and use the pink tower in your own Montessori-prepared environment at home.
I hope this article helps to improve your knowledge about the pink tower and related Montessori activities as a parent.
What is the Pink tower?
The pink tower is a sensorial material designed by Maria Montessori herself, at the Casa dei Bambini where she began teaching children in Rome.
It’s made up of a set of light pink, wooden Montessori blocks. Its welcoming color and structure have led to it being known as the “symbol of Montessori”.
Its color and structure are designed to be more than just welcoming! The design of the pink tower is very considered to best help your child’s development. The blocks are all the same shape and color as this isolates your child’s attention onto the size of the blocks and the order of the tower, rather than distracting them with other details.
In Montessori, the pink tower is used during the first plane of development to teach children about order and precision. It also helps children learn to count from one to ten.
Furthermore, the pink tower is key to refining your child’s senses during the first plane of development.
The blocks in the tower are each at a scaled proportion, decreasing in size with every block. The blocks are small enough for a child as young as three years old to carry independently.
What age should I introduce the Montessori pink tower?
Pink tower activities range in difficulty and complexity as your child develops an understanding of how to construct them. The pink tower is most suitably used between the ages of two and three years old, while your child is developing his or her pincer grip and gross motor coordination.
How do I use the pink tower at home?
There are so many activities your child can engage with when using the pink tower. Next, we will provide some easy-to-follow steps to help you get started!
The Montessori work mat
Before the pink tower is placed out on the floor for construction, your child should roll out a mat to construct the tower on. The mat keeps the floor and the materials safe from scratching or wear and tear. This is an important step, as it teaches your child about respecting our belongings and environment.
Carrying the Montessori blocks
Next, your child learns how to walk while carrying the Montessori blocks, placing the pink tower blocks carefully onto the mat before construction. This activity refines gross motor coordination and can be practiced in both the Montessori home and the Montessori classroom.
Pink tower construction: activity 1
In the first presentation or activity, your child builds the pink tower from largest to smallest blocks, making a vertical tower. Your child will use both hands for the larger Montessori blocks and one hand for the smaller Montessori blocks. There is also a wooden stand your child can use to build the tower.
Pink tower construction: activity 2
The second presentation, taught as an extension activity, involves constructing the pink tower horizontally from largest to smallest. This activity prepares your child for working with the brown stair.
Following these presentations, there are many extension activities that your child can learn by using the pink tower.
Introduce the brown stair
Once your child has mastered the first two activities, you may like to introduce the brown stair. This is the next sensorial sequencing activity of blocks that your child can work with. Your child can build the blocks on top of the brown stair, placing the smallest block on the lowest stair, and the largest block on the highest stair. There are many different builds that will teach your child about size and thickness of objects. Grab a set of extension cards and explore all the different builds!
Use tower matching cards
Matching the pink tower to pink tower cards is also fun for your child to explore! This teaches your child to discern size, while being an interesting and challenging activity.
Introduce control pattern cards
Once your child has become competent at matching the pink tower to cards, you can also provide your child with control pattern cards to copy from as well. This is important for developing visual tracking skills in our children, and to develop concentration, large and fine motor skills while completing this activity.
What Montessori materials can support pink tower learning activities?
While you don’t need a lot of materials to successfully use the pink tower, there are a few Montessori materials we recommend. These items will help you in completing the pink tower learning activities at home.
These materials include the following:
This set of brown stairs is perfect for use in extension activities with the pink tower, to practice comparative and more complicated sequences and structures. This prepares your child’s mind for comparative and mathematical thinking.
These patterning cards are perfect for matching extension activities with the pink tower and the brown stair. Matching cards can also be bought for the individual pink tower blocks. Matching develops your child’s discernment and visual tracking skills.
There is a wide variety of activities and materials your child can use while practicing sensorially with the pink tower and related Montessori materials in the prepared environment.
As a Montessori parent, you may also be able to make some materials yourself, like matching cards.
Other materials that are needed for purchase, on the other hand, are important to have a reference for, as included in this article.
It is in this way that we as adults can ensure that we are preparing our children properly in their education, including while learning and developing skills through the pink tower.