Friday, April 1, 2011

Dressing Frames ~ Sort of...

When youngest dd was about 2 I thought I would be able to make the wonderful Montessori boards such as these in this picture over at Montessori N' Such.  It didn't take long for me to see that THAT wasn't going to happen!  What DID happen was this:

We used real clothes on stuffed animals and dolls.  I made a purposeful effort to offer a variety of closures on the clothes.  They learned it more through play than 'school time' or 'shelf work time' in our natural learning environment.  However, there was one activity bear that I had found at a discount store when the olders were tiny.  It was similar to this(although not quite) and had it all on one item which was nice.  They used this before and during the stage when we put real clothes on the bear/dolls because they don't need to skills to put on the clothes yet - it is JUST the closures.  There are more activity dolls below.  Such a variety of attractive choices  these days!

Maybe if I am ever a grandmother I'll invest in some Melissa and Doug boards.  They are very well-made, attractive to little ones, and isolate skills even though there is more than one skill on a board (does that make sense?).  They also have good resale value :).  Here are some favorites for dressing skills:  Basic skills board (with bear); Basic skills board (with clothes); Lacing Sneaker.  They also have a latches board

There is also a Learn to Dress series here and here and here and here and here and here.  Very cute :).

This is a cool buckle-only item: Buckle Puzzle Jr.

Here are some traditional Montessori dressing frames but I've seen them cheaper somewhere - I just can't remember where!


  1. A couple decades ago, I was a primary Montessori teacher. I decided to make a set of true Montessori dressing frames. I used the stretcher frames for stretching canvas and painting. Later, I went to WMI and took Elementary Montessori training. I gave the dressing frames to a start-up charter school that was scrambling for materials. I can tell you, they took some time and work, but thery were sturdy.

  2. Rita,
    Thanks for the comment! That's a great idea to use those stretcher frames. I initially tried it with photo frames and it didn't work for me.

  3. Here are some vests from Oriental Trading. They would've been perfect for the oversized bear that we used: