The Lock Learning board is a Montessori Practical Life activity. An important aim of the Montessori philosophy is that children have the freedom they need for their own self development in their own time. Practical Life skills include a range of activities designed to develop the child’s independence and self-reliance and represent work that is from real life.
This task is a Montessori Practical Life skill designed to teach the child dexterity, how to use all the fingers working together, independence and to develop hand-eye coordination. While teaching the child how to master the skill of the different locks and latches, tactile sensory and visual refinement is also engaged and developed. By using their hands and handling real objects, instead of looking at pictures, the child is interested and present.
The lock learning board helps to refine and advance the child’s muscular development and fine motor skills as well as his or her visual discrimination. Fine motor skills are important in order for the child to learn to write.
This activity also helps to strengthen the child’s fingers and to develop the pincer grip that is necessary for writing. They learn perseverance in mastering something, as it is an activity that they will have to repeat more than once before they master it. This task gives them a sense of purpose and a feeling of capability. There is also a noise as the locks snap into place which gives the child an added feeling of satisfaction.
The lock learning task teaches logical thinking and decision making skills and gives the child a sense of self confidence when they get it right. It also teaches the child self-correction as they are able to see and hear for themselves when the locks or latches don’t engage correctly.