There are a few Montessori presentations for which random small objects are great for. Typically, these are in the language area --- and depending on the "style" you follow, you may need more or you may need less. The Keys of the World (AMI-style) require fewer.
In our home we didn't buy any - except one batch of tiny flower pots with flowers, on Ebay. Why? I don't know, but they sure are cute!
We could have totally done without them.
The thing is - each object has far more than just one name. And you can describe it.
So a "pig", depending on the details shown you could use: pig, sow, boar, swine, pink, large (other sizes), piglet, animal, mammal --- and even look at their parts that can be seen: snout, eyes, hooves. etc. Or what they provide: pork, bacon, ribs.
Cows are also bovine.
Horses are equine.
If you want to buy some objects - go for it! Just don't dismiss the idea that you have 100% of what you need in your home already. What you don't have in small objects doesn't have to done with small objects - "I hear the sound in "mmmm" in something in this room - who could it be? OH! It is Emma!!!"
Posted this on Facebook:
Some assurance that you don't "need" to buy small objects (if you "want" to - have fun! but those feeling the pinch? ***Look around your house***)
This stuff was gathered one day, several years ago. We sometimes pull additional things (like jumpdrive, necklace, lego pieces (Legos are great for miniatures!), other toy pieces, etc. It is AMAZING what we have in our homes, when we actually look. Got a junk drawer? A random art pieces junk drawer? Sewing? Hardware? Legos or other play sets? Oh! We did a tealight candle in this set for a while - then we decided to use it wink emoticon
I met a homeschool mom about 2 years ago, who insisted up and down "we just don't have small objects - which ones should I buy? and we are on a TIGHT budget."
I told her
- You have more than you think you do.
- You don't NEED all those cutesy objects other people have. Use the large objects around you if needed; use words in the child's mind. Use the kitchen cupboard contents, or the trees/objects in the backyard. Sounds are all around you.
- She was still in a quandary (amazing how we moms like to work ourselves up into these). I was coming to visit anyway and I asked for permission to find small objects all over her house, requesting permission (or boundaries) of where I could look.
Here is a basic run-down of our "tiny objects" in our Montessori homeschool and co-op:
Toob animals (I don't even know what all we have here!)
Lego pieces (amazing what can be pulled from Lego sets)
More hardware pieces
#6 from our fridge magnets (to have an "x" when animals are not present)
flower from my bouquet from my mom/stepdad's wedding
set of three tinier keys - on a key ring
plastic keys from a Wendy's kids meal game (like pick up sticks)
big green button from an old coat
plastic pacifiers from a baby shower
tiny flower pots with flowers - different colors
white gift bow
red gift bow/rose
hexagonal box with two lids
bunny in egg
tongue depressor (popsicle stick, craft stick)
empty jar of paint (clear, jar, cap, lid, glass, metal, white, empty)
rug from a doll-house
egg-shaped stone - looks like the universe
brown jars with white lids
bunch of flowers
tiny wood cube
Christmas wreath pin
white cup hook
two sizes of paperclips
suction cup hanger
gold ribbon bow
gold cap for lightbulb
table-leg foot prop (we used these for polishing dishes years ago)
NOW **THINK** - for each of those objects are words for all of the following:
colors, sizes, textures, composition, style, other appearance, weight, multiple names....
Tell me you can't do all the sound games and the Mystery Bag with this set?