Making orange juice without the juicer is a lot of fun and it has plenty of benefits for young kids. The same goes for homemade lemonade or any other kind of juice you would like to make.
Hand squeezing juice is a wonderful Practical Life Activity that is practiced in Montessori classrooms all over the world. This activity is introduced in the Montessori primary years, however it can be done with toddlers, as well.
This can activity can be presented in a proper Montessori fashion or presented in a casual way at home.
How to set up your Montessori hand squeezed juice activity
If you are looking to present this activity as a Montessori Practical Life Activity, here are the steps as well as additional information about the activity.
- vinyl mat
- hand juicer
- glass bowl
- drinking glasses
- small glass pitcher (optional)
- Learn how to use a hand juicer
- orange, lemon, grapefruit, ect.
Presenting your Montessori hand squeezed juice activity
- Invite your child to the activity and introduce it
- Put on your aprons and remind your child always wash their hands before preparing food or drinks
- Have your child carry the mat to the table and you carry the tray
- Put the materials onto the mat in the order which they will be used
- Say, “We are going to make juice”.
- Place the juicer in the glass bowl
- Pick up the fruit by the peel and put it to the top of the hand juicer, cut side down
- Press down on the fruit and twist it from side to side, holding the juicer steady with your non-dominant hand
- Continue this motion until all the juice is gone from the fruit
- Place a drinking glass next to the juicer and slowly pour the juice into the glass (pour into the pitcher if there is more than one child needing to be served)
- Show your child how to wipe any spills that were made and how to place the fruit peels into the compost bin
- After drinking the juice, have your child accompany you to the sink (or their dishwashing station) and wash and dry the supplies used for the Montessori hand squeezed juice activity
- Invite your child to perform the activity themselves and assist as needed
This is such and enjoyable activity for my children. We sometimes even set up an area outside so we can enjoy the sunshine while they make their own juice!
Experiencing making their own drink by hand is a delight for young kids. If you have more than one child at home or if you are presenting this activity in a classroom setting (Montessori or traditional), having children take turns doing the juicing and serving each other from a child-size pitcher provides an extra opportunity for pouring and some wonderful opportunities for Grace and Courtesy lessons!
If you are juicing lemons for lemonade with a preschool or elementary age child, an opportunity for a brief science lesson presents itself when you mix the sugar with some water and lemon juice. (Solution, substance, dissolve, ect.)
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