“Let us give the children a vision of the universe.”
Maria Montessori in To Educate the Human Potential.
Update: The Cosmic Nesting Dolls in the video were originally available from Where Am I? but sadly it seems they are no longer making them. If you would like to try your hand at DIYing the dolls, try these blank wooden nesting dolls from Amazon.
Or, you may want to try Etsy for a custom order by LalitaDolls!
“Cosmic Education is intended to help each of us search for our cosmic task as a species and as individuals. To do this, we must understand ourselves in context. It is only against the background of our place in the universe, our relationships with other living organisms, and our understanding of human unity within cultural diversity, that we can attempt to answer the question, “Who am I?” –Michael and D’Neil Duffy
The idea for the nesting dolls was born in a Montessori training class 15 years ago. As Elise Brady watched the teacher use traditional nesting dolls to teach sense of place and perspective, the concept of adding the Montessori maps to the dolls blossomed. Ten years later, Elise shared her idea with a friend, Judy Blahut, who was an artist and former Montessori educator, and the two came together to make the idea a reality.
Elise’s goal is to educate individuals about their place in the universe using educational manipulatives and a children’s book. With an understanding of one’s place geographically and one’s impact on the universe, interconnectivity, peace and caring for others and the environment will naturally evolve.
The smallest doll represents the child and they are nested in a city, then a state, then a country, then a continent, then the world and finally in the universe.
The nesting feature inspires curiosity and wonder resulting in an understanding of one’s impact on the world.These materials will teach children their place in the universe and their ability to change the world, one ripple at a time. The materials inspire further exploration in the subjects of science, geography, social studies, vocabulary and reading.
Seemi holds a Master's degree in education, and an AMS Early Childhood credential. She has twenty years of experience in Montessori as a teacher, school administrator, and school owner. Seemi is the founder of TrilliumMontessori.org.