Practical Life Exercises

The purpose and aim of Practical Life is to help the child gain control in the coordination of his movement, and help the child to gain independence and adapt to his society.

It is therefore important to “Teach by teaching, not correcting” (Montessori) in order to allow the child to be a fully functional member in his own society. Practical Life Exercises also aid the growth and development of the child’s intellect and concentration and will in turn also help the child develop an orderly way of thinking.


The exercises of practical life are classified into four groups:

  1. Elementary Movements: They involve simple movements like carrying a jug, carrying a tray etc. which later form a part of complicated exercises.
  2. Care of Person: These exercises teach child to take care of himself like washing hands, polishing shoes, dressing frames etc.
  3. Care of Environment: The child is shown how to take care of his environment with exercises like sweeping, dusting, watering plants etc.
  4. Grace and Courtesy: These exercises help the child learn social behavior. These exercises include passing of pointed objects, carrying a book, opening and shutting door etc.