Montessori Elementary Homeschool Blog - with documentation of our infant Montessori, toddler Montessori, and primary Montessori experiences; as well as preparation for the upcoming adolescent Montessori homeschool years.

Friday, July 20, 2012

Montessori and Life of Fred

We have not yet read through *all* the Life of Fred books, but here is what I can say for the ones that we have used and where they fit into our AMI Montessori albums:

(Updates have been made 9/11/15)

Fred = silly; this picture = silly;
so does Fred = this picture?
a = c; b = c;
so does a really = b ??? ;) 
Elementary series of 10 books:
  • Beginning in 1st grade, they can be used sequentially. 
  • Beginning in 2nd-4th grade, still use them sequentially, but you might move through them faster. 
  • 5th/6th grade: intend for them to be funny stories with light review, but there won't necessarily be anything "new" - still very funny, interesting, connects the various subjects in a fully interactive manner inviting a personal response of the child (cosmic education!)
  • ADDing: There are an additional 3 books in an "intermediate" series between elementary and actual readiness for Fractions (which is FAR more than just fractions and starts the "Before High School" series).
Interestingly enough, these sets, along with the Fractions and Decimals/Percents books fill in just about all the "missing" mathematics components listed in state standards but not emphasized in Montessori. 

  • If you've been following the Montessori albums pretty closely, Fractions can start in 3rd or 4th year of Montessori elementary - OR whenever the child is ready and wanting. The author prefers children wait until 5th grade at least; and has authored 3 additional elementary books (deemed "Intermediate") to emphasize this position. The skills the author notes on the information page for use in fractions are learned by all lower elementary Montessori students following AMI albums.
  • Decimals & Percents is solidly an upper elementary Montessori book. 
  • Elementary Physics (or Pre-Algebra 0 with Physics, depending on the time of publicatino) AND Pre-Algebra with Biology would be ideal for a 11-13 year old in a Montessori setting. 
  • Pre-Algebra with Economics would be ideal for a 12-14 year old in a Montessori setting. 

I can't yet speak for the high school texts. We will likely acquire them in a few years when my son is older, but not quite ready for them, to have time to peruse them at that time :) 
ETA2: We do have some of the high school books now. It will be interesting to see where they fit in with this Montessori child ;)
As a 3rd year elementary student, Legoboy really gets a lot out of Fractions but is not quite there with Decimals & Percents - he is only just now starting the decimal fraction Montessori material. Once he gets that under his belt, I think Decimals & Percents will take off.
With that said, he LOVES to read the high school books for the story line; the math does trickle in a bit even though he's not "there" yet with Calculus ;) 

ETA: I should point out for anyone for whom Life of Fred is a new idea: the books are silly beyond belief! The subtitle for the Fractions book is "As Serious As It Needs to Be" - and in this case, means hardly at all. It turns out math can be silly and fun and STILL be educational!

9/11/15 UPDATE: Now that Legoboy is a 6th year elementary student, he is on par with the above recommendations, he has completed Decimals & Percents and he will begin Pre-Algbra with Physics in the near future (he has other subjects to focus on just now).



  1. Hi Jessica!

    Just a tip from another blogger...I would love to pin this post on my pinterest...but there is no image. That's an argument for finding an image for every post no matter what. If a blogger doesn't put an image in the post I'll usually pull the blog header image or SOMETHING, but you have no header. In fact there was literally nothing I could pin besides the "we're on the fence" button, "flag counter" from the bottom of your blog or astronomy pix.

    Anyway, just a little selfish advice so that I can pin your stuff more easily :)

    1. Just for your MBT ;)

      (I think I've read a little too much Fred of late....)

  2. hehe! Good point! I try to do that, but sometimes I type too fast ;)

    One time I needed an image that came from this site, and I added the image of the universe off to the side as a generic image for the site.

    Of course, now I'm seeing some weird highlighting in the post - off to fix that part at least! I'll see if I can add an image too ;)

  3. Ha! I see now that you are poking fun at me :) If it got me what I wanted I'm game :)

    Here's one for you: picture=pin; pin=blog traffic; picture=blog traffic

    LOL! Now off to pin this post!