One of my favorite games to play in the Montessori setting is the Silence Game.  This activity, while promoting a child’s awareness of the sounds around them, also cultivates an inner sense of peace and quiet.  As a Montessori educator, I feel it is critical to provide children with opportunities to simply ‘be,’ without interruption, and give them a chance to know ‘quiet.’  For a detailed description of the Silence Game, read THIS POST from Montessori Print Shop.  Be sure to follow the link at the bottom and read what Maria Montessori herself had to say about the Silence Game.

In our classroom, we have enjoyed playing this game as a group.  The sense of intrigue and awe is evident each time no matter how many times we play.  I always begin the activity by asking the children what the word ‘silence’ means.  Then I bring our special “Silence” frame, reserved only for this purpose, to a mat along with the Silence Game candle.  The candle is lit and and we begin the game.  Usually, the children choose to close their eyes.

The Silence Game

After the last time we played this game, one of the children enthusiastically shared, “Ms. Sasha!  We should have the Silence Game set up as a work!”  What a perfect idea – and to make it even more perfect, this child had recently given me a sea-glass decorated photo frame which I could use in putting the lesson together for an individual activity:

Individual Silence Game set up.

The items for our individual Silence Game include the sea glass frame with the word ‘silence,’ battery-powered tea light candle, a copy of Jennifer Howard’s book When I Make Silence, and a three-minute egg timer.  Some children might find  the “quiet” by simply watching the sand move through the timer!  The blue mat not only coordinates with the other items, but it’s color also designates the mat’s only purpose for use with the individual Silence Game.  Additionally, it is the only blue mat in the classroom, so I imagine that its significance will become a major point of interest for the children in our class.

It has been a pleasure watching the children take this activity out and actually use it!  They close their eyes, take deep breaths, and simply enjoy the silence.

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