I have been putting some effort into updating my art area of the classroom. Although I have seen numerous examples of art shelves and art materials in the course of my training and previous employment, I wasn't quite satisfied with the quality of my materials- many of which were made of plastic (which I try to avoid using whenever possible) or not as aesthetically pleasing as possible.
One example was the pasting lesson/collage tray that I have been using. The paper bits were stored in a plastic bin that I had purchased at a hardware store (for lack of something nicer) and the paste was stored in tupperware containers with slits in the plastic lids, as I had seen in my training. Montessori schools generally make a point of having children apply paste with brushes or small spreaders (as opposed to glue sticks or glue bottles) because it serves as one more opportunity for the child to develop their fine motor skills/pincer grasp for handwriting.
So, when I discovered this beautiful birch alternative- with a nice little wooden brush and a nice little glass jar (with a lid that they can screw and unscrew), I had to have it. So far, the lesson has been a big hit in the classroom- it is generally one of the first lessons off the shelf in the morning (and when someone dropped it while carrying it back to the shelf, it became a very nice sorting lesson).