The children have been very busy working with the Montessori materials, in particular with materials from one area - the sensorial activities.
First and foremost the sensorial materials are vital in meeting the child's inner sensitivity for the refinement of the,senses, as well as the,senses of movement and order.
Montessori has addresses the five senses, with which are all familiar - visual, auditory, olfactory, gustatory and factual - as well as the baric, thermic, chromatic, kinaesthetic and stereognostic senses. Montessori said the,hand is the pathway to the brain - the impressions formed by the hand through manipulation enable the hand to build a mental image of the object or shape. This manipulation will, in time, enable the child to understand a geometric term, and relate it to objects in his /her environment. This is what Montessori called materialised abstraction. What is concretely manipulated builds abstract understanding.
We build our knowledge and understanding of the world by using the senses. This is a slow process that goes on throughout childhood and into adulthood.
The sensorial apparatus provides the child with sensorial-motor activities which gave been systematically planned for all the senses and so permit the child to form new concepts through experience, exploration and repetition.
Each sense is isolated to provide an intense experience and most of the activities are designed for individual use because each child is at a different level of development and progresses at a different rate.
Hope this puts a bit more light on the importance of the sensorial materials in a Montessori classroom and how they apply to the Montessori curriculum.