No, it’s not just because our dishwasher died and the new one won’t get here until next Wednesday.
My kids really needed to learn this life skill.
After breakfast and lunch, they took their own dishes outside to a dish washing station. It was very basic with warm soapy water, rinse water, and towels for drying. I gave them a scrub brush and a sponge which I had cut in half so it would fit their small hands. They had so much fun that I scored the same points I would have had I taken them to the zoo! Mom bonus: their dishes were clean and put away by the end of this activity. Yay!
Washing dishes is part of Montessori’s Practical Life curriculum. Practical Life simply means giving children the chance to cultivate skills they can use around the house. These skills foster independence, a sense of accomplishment, and competence in everyday life. While children learn these tasks, they also strengthen their finger muscles and gain an eye for detail. The yogurt didn’t disappear off the bowl just by putting it in soapy water. Jack had to actually wipe it off. See how focused they are in the pictures; that shows their full engagement.
Their final task was putting the dishes back where they belong, which teaches responsiblity and sorting skills.
The kids kept begging for more, so I guess we better keep eating. Maybe we don’t need that delivery next Wednesday.
That reminds me of my mom’s favorite joke when I was growing up: Why would I buy I dishwasher when I already have two? (meaning my sister and me).
Moms are so hilarious.