Thursday, January 19, 2012

Folding Cloths

Have you ever heard of "folding cloths"? I hadn’t.
It’s not a new thing, but it is new to me.

My sister recently incorporated a Laundromat dramatic play unit with her kindergarten class and she told me how she incorporated a folding cloth activity which is apparently based on a Montessori activity.  She showed me these as an example.  I thought I would try to make my own. 

Lily has been very interested in having a list of specific defined chores (where my approach was less defined, just help). I think Lily became interested in “chores” from the Little House stories.  
One of her “chores” is to help fold the laundered kitchen linens, as well as face cloths.  She was having great difficulty, but after trying the folds on these gridded cloths, she improved.   The cloths are really easy to make especially if you find some thrifted linen serviettes.  Just stitch folding grid lines with contrasting thread. 
She tested the activity.
After some mastery, I gave her a basket of laundered tea towels.
IMG_1934 She is trying to judge where fold line would be.
It took some time, but the load was folded.
It would have been much faster for me to just do it myself, but I must remind myself to forget about the time and provide the opportunity.  I went to a parenting workshop last week. Although I didn’t agree with everything, there were some very good reminders for me - about remembering not rob a child of a learning opportunity, in particular life lessons and these sorts of things. 
Since Deborah is having a “every day dramatic play” link up this week, I thought I would also share the photos from my sister’s Laundromat dramatic play unit.
Objective: Students are learning through play to match pairs, sort hot and cold types of clothing, master folding techniques, pretend washing and hanging clothes to dry
Suggested Items:
1. Laundromat sign
2. Washer and dryer
3. Suggested Reading: A pair of Socks by Stuart J. Murphy (which emphasizes matching)
4. laundry care signs and laundry soap
5. Mini laundry baskets holding socks and clothes provide useful sorting activities, such as matching socks / lights and darks /hot and cold.  Include a clothesline and clothes pins.
laundromat1 IMG_3840 IMG_3842 IMG_3846
6. An ironing board  and a  folding activity (such as the “folding cloths” mentioned above) are also fun additions
7. Math pattern activity: Students created their own math patterns using blank copies of socks and creating patterns.
The students really enjoyed this dramatic play unit.  Who knew doing laundry could be so much fun?  This post is linked to Teach Preschool Have a lovely day,



  1. I always enjoy getting a sneak peek of your sister's dramatic play areas. What a fun center. You bring up a very good point about remembering not rob a child of a learning opportunity. Too often, I find myself just wanting to "do it" for them. I'm having to just learn to sit on my hands more often. Smile.

  2. I'm with Kim. I do the same thing and must really stop myself! Otherwise, before you know it, he'll be a man but he won't know how to do anything.

    Thanks for the reminder. :)

  3. I am with Kim and Michele. Learning to let them do is hard, but I have been trying to take time to teach so that they can learn and know how when they are on their own. Thanks for the tips!

    Your sister rocks in the kindergarten curriculum department!

    Have a great evening with those beautiful girls!

  4. the Sunday School program at my church is Montessori based & there are folding clothes (although they don't have the lines sewn in ~ that's a good idea for dramatic play at home).

    I couldn't agree with you more that doing it yourself would be done faster, not to mention better, but taking the time to teach them is so important. A skill my oldest son has to have is how to bake GF, as he is GF & will need that skill for his whole life.

    I'm reading a really good book that I highly recommend: Children Who Do Too Little, Why Your Kids Need to Work Around The House (and How to Get Them to Do It) by Patricia Sprinkle ~ as you can imagine these types of things are covered in the book.

  5. That looks great fun and Lily did an excellent job with her folding. You are more than welcome to send over here for some extra work experience!
    Kate x

  6. Eva is excellent at folding things (clothes) and learned from the master (me!) I just must say it is the greatest of help a child can offer.. oh and washing dishes...and ironing...(sometimes I have to iron them again, but the effort is the one that counts, eh?).


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