Sharpening Pencils For A Sharper Child
Pencils are a great instrument for your child to express themselves creatively, while their hands are what Maria Montessori once described as “the tools of intelligence.”
All the more reason to provide your child with a traditional metal blade sharpener over an electric or battery-operated one, where they might miss out on some valuable growth opportunities.
The physical act of twisting the pencil while holding the blade steady exercises a child’s fine motors skills and strengthens their finger muscles to further allow their creative exploration.
Watching the blade slice the pencil into a fine point, meanwhile, demonstrates the power of sharp objects and offers a natural lesson in handling these items cautiously — this foundational knowledge will be applicable in many future scenarios.
The child also learns how to care for their home environment. Finding the shavings left behind provides a reminder about cleaning up after we make a mess.
Best of all, this activity is also a great moment for parents to model gratitude and appreciation for the things we have — you can teach them that rather than throwing away a pencil with a dull tip, we can simply sharpen it to prolong its life. They’ll begin to understand how we maintain our possessions to keep them working properly!
There’s something magical about the old-fashioned act of sharpening a pencil with a traditional metal blade sharpener. The child not only finds the process fascinating but also has much to gain from the experience.
For more tips on how to introduce Montessori activities, read The Nine Key Points to Sharing a New Activity with Your Child.