How to Present Montessori Red Rod To Young Learners?

red rod

In the Montessori setting, there is one thing you will notice right away: there are no worksheets. Instead, Montessori children work with a variety of materials that teach kids skills in mathematics, science, and language arts–among others–while developing their interest in the world around them. One of the most popular materials is known as The Red Rod.

The Montessori Red Rod are comprised of ten wooden rods, differing in one dimension, length. The smallest rod is ten cm long, and the largest is one hundred cm. Each rod increases by increments of ten cm in length. The Red Rod are classified as a Montessori sensorial material

The Montessori Red Rod are used to introduce the young learner to important mathematical concepts such as length, counting, and addition to the decimal system.

The Purpose of The Montessori Red Rod

red rod

The Red Rod aim to help the young learner develop greater visual discrimination. 

Why Visual discrimination Is Important?:

  • Visual discrimination helps the young learner to mentally organize concepts and to comprehend their surroundings better. 
  • Visual discrimination is necessary for the young learner to recognize and appreciate a visual stimulus. (For example, when we see a tree, we visually discriminate it from other plants, as well as from nonliving objects.) 
  • Visual discrimination will help the child to understand such things as length, height, and volume.

Another purpose of this sensorial material is to develop the young learner’s coordination of movement, assisting with concentration and balance, and providing the young learner with the basic language of Math.

Through repetition with this Sensorial Material, the young learner will learn to discriminate between short and long, assemble the rods in a stair-step pattern, and recognize disharmony when incorrectly constructing the rods.

What Age Can You Introduce the Montessori Red Rods?

The Montessori Red Rods are introduced to kids from 2 and a half to 6 years of age. This is often after they have operated on preliminary sensorial materials, like the Montessori Pink Tower, Brown Stairs, and Knobbed Cylinders.

How to Present the Montessori Red Rods

montessori red rod

Whether introducing the Red Rods to children for the first time or merely refreshing them after a long summer break, you must provide both hands-on and visual interaction.

  1. Invite the young learner to collect 2 mats for this fun activity, collecting and unrolling one mat at a time.
  2. Demonstrate to young learners how to hold the shortest red rod by griping over the top of the center part of the rod with the right thumb and fingers.
  3. Slide the red rod off the shelves until it is fully out, and grip the red rod with the left hand below the right hand.
  4. Carry the Red Rod to the first mat.
  5. Have the young learner carry the remaining red rods one at a time and put them randomly on the mat.
  6. When assembled, ask the child to stand to your left.
  7. Pick up the longest Red Rod and put it horizontally near the back of the other mat.
  8. Let the child know you need the next longest rod.
  9. Pick the second longest rod and put it under the longest Red Rod of the other mat, then align the left edges.
  10. Once the rod has been placed, ensure proper alignment by sliding the hand along the left edge of the two red rods.
  11. Continue in this manner until all Red Rods are placed in the proper order. You’ll notice the red rods coming closer and closer to you as each red rod is placed.
  12. Randomly order the Montessori Red Rods.
  13. Encourage the young learner to construct the Montessori Red Rods. To extend help, ask kids which one they are going, to begin with. Only provide guidance if the young learner requires assistance.
  14. When the kid is done working with the Red Rods, show him how to return the rods to where they are kept.
  15. Let young learners know they can now work with Red Rods whenever they choose!

What if a Young Kid Makes a Mistake When Lining Up the Montessori Red Rods?

Control of error is crucial to the child’s development and learning. In this case, the young learner needs to realize and recognize that his wrongdoing makes an incorrect line and that he needs to correct his mistake. The child can try again when ready.

If the kid lines up the Rods incorrectly, do not correct him, as this can damage self-esteem and be counterproductive. If he asks for help, gently guide him to the correct spot and provide positive reinforcement.


red rod

There are a number of Montessori Red Rods extensions that help further develop what the young learner has developed so far.

  • Maze – This is the most popular extension of the Red Rods. The great thing about this extension is it becomes a lesson in coordination and balance and constructing something as complex as a maze.
  • Stair Formation – The Red Rods can be arranged vertically, like a staircase. This will help the child to associate the Red Rods with a real-life environment, such as buildings and stairways.
  • Zig Zag – The Red Rods can be arranged in a zigzag pattern to create an interesting geometric shape. This extension helps develop the child’s ability to visualize shapes and create three-dimensional forms.
  • Stereognostic Exercise – This can be performed by placing a few Rods behind the kid’s back and having him construct a stair without looking.

Are the Montessori Red Rods a Math Material?

These materials are classified as sensorial materials. This is due to the visual aspect of the Montessori Red Rod activities. However, the link between mathematical concepts and many sensorial materials is quite clear.

The Montessori Red Rods have the little one work with dimensions, patterns, and weight and prepare the kid for future work with the decimal system.

DIY Montessori Red Rod

DIY montessori red rod

Montessori education is a unique and effective approach to learning. One of the key aspects of Montessori education is the use of Montessori materials.

Red rods are one of the most popular Montessori materials. They are used to teach a variety of concepts, including early math and language.

Making your own Montessori red rods is a great way to save money and get exactly what you want. With a few simple supplies, you can make your own Montessori red rods that are perfect for your child. You can use some lumber, red paint, and a table saw. Just be sure to be precise in the measurements. Making Montessori Ours provides guidelines and instructions for making your own Montessori Red Rods.

However, if you don’t have the time or don’t have enough skills to make your own set of Montessori red rods, then there is nothing wrong with purchasing a set if the prices are reasonable. There are many resources available to look for online to purchase a Montessori Red Rods set.

Final Thoughts

When presenting Montessori red rods to young learners, it is important to be patient, use clear and concise language, and provide plenty of opportunities for practice. With a little bit of time and effort, your young learners will be able to master this material and develop a strong foundation for future learning.

Montessori Academy provides a safe, supportive environment for your child to explore and learn. We use a wide range of Montessori materials, including Red Rods, to help your child develop a strong foundation for learning. By providing children with the opportunity to explore and discover, we help them to develop confidence in their own abilities and provide them with the skills needed for life-long learning. If you are new to the Montessori Method or have questions about how it works, don’t hesitate to contact us today! You may contact us at (323) 795-0200 for West Adams or (310) 215 -3388 for Culver City.


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