Mortar and Pestle is an excellent addition to your Early Years classroom environment. There are many materials that can be added to mortar and pestle play for learning, discovery and all the sensory fun the children can imagine. I will link other posts I’ve done with mortar and pestle (coming soon).
For this activity the children used green tomatoes. We had a bounty crop of tomatoes in our front, side and backyard. The children love picking the tomatoes even when told to get the red ones, they would pick the green ones. Salsa verde yeahhh!
Some children may not know what or how to beat down with the pestle. It takes time for them to get the concept that – the pestle will crush / grind the contents in the mortar, however force is needed to hammer it down THAT IS LEARNING. That skill will be developed over time and it won’t be a one and done situation. Using a mortar and pestle helps with hand and eye coordination. The children will learn how to place their hands around the pestle and ways to avoid getting hurt from pestle connecting with the the mortar. The learning opportunities are many when using real home pieces – practical life skill at it’s BEST.
Here we see a child examining the contents of the tomatoes after it was crushed. Sensory, discovery and LEARNING
Mortars that are a little deeper may hold the contents without them jumping out.
I hope you will bring one of these to your learning environment – please note it is better to have a drop cloth under the mortar and pestle, it makes clean up faster and easier.
May your children have fun crushing, grinding, pulping – working those muscles while using a mortar and pestle.
xoxo – Miss Sue