The way that "works" are presented in the classroom requires oodles of trays, a plethora of pitchers, a variety of baskets, a bevy of bowls, a multitude of vases......you get the picture. I recently took photos of some of the things we use around here and realized that I had found a lot of my stuff at garage sales, thrift shops and clearance racks. I also developed a sixth sense for re-using empty food containers (to the point of being a little weird about it!)
Here are just a few examples. Beware: it can be addictive to look at the world through "Montessori Eyes" and think about how you might use someone's old junk in your classroom!
The biggest, longest mat was sold in the clearance bin at Pottery Barn as a table runner.
Empty basmati rice containers are great for storing tons of little pieces (in this case, plastic letters).
The cheese eaten long ago, this is currently being used to store treats for potty successes!
The larger brie containers are good for CDs and those discs you put in the Viewmasters.
Platform is from an old sushi set, bowls from a sale.
More thrift store finds!
After trying many different racks for brooms over the years, this garage sale basket works the best.
The "Opening and Closing" work is a no-brainer.
Happy "Sailing"! (**Update 10/15/12: This post has a nice list for you to take with you on your next "hunting" trip: Molly Makes Do)