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In Montessori education, there is usually an introductory geography lesson focused on land, air, and water. In this post I’m sharing how I introduced the concepts of land, air, and water to my kids as part of our preschool geography lessons.
Note: You can find more kid-friendly geography activities on my geography unit study page.
Filling containers with land, air, and water
To introduce this lesson, I put together a tray with the following materials:
- A small globe
- 3 empty glass containers labeled “land,””air,” and “water”
I explained to my children that the earth is made up of land, air, and water. I showed them the labels on the glass containers, and asked them if they would help me fill each container with the item listed on the label.
We went outside to collect dirt for the container labeled “land.”
Air was easy to gather, since it is all around us. 🙂
And we used water from the sink to fill the container labeled “water.”
Then we brought our filled containers together to look at them.
Land, air, and water 3-part cards
My kids also worked to sort a collection of land, air, and water 3-part cards.
The set of cards include one header card plus an additional six cards for each category. My kids sorted the cards under each of our three glass containers.
Read books about land, air, and water
There are also several books you might choose to read with your children as you study air, land, and water. Here are a couple I would recommend:
Air Is All Around You by Franklyn M. Branley.
Dumbo: on Land on Sea in the Air by Jerry Walters – this one is out of print but would be a great read if you can find it.
UPDATE: I’ve created two printables that are perfect for your beginning geography lessons! Grab a copy of my Land, Air, and Water Animals sorting cards and my Land, Air, and Water Transportation sorting cards as a wonderful resource for your lessons.
More geography resources
More geography posts from Gift of Curiosity:
- Books about maps and globes
- Montessori mapping activities
- Montessori directionality activities
- How to make a working compass
- Introduction to land, air, and water
- Montessori continents activities
- Teaching the continents by making a globe
- Montessori animals and their continents
- Montessori landform activities
- Montessori continents and world map printables