Did you know there actually isn't such a thing as a ‘Montessori toy’, but in fact it is more that the toys that have been designed with the Montessori principles in mind instead?
History of Montessori Toys Method
The founder of the Montessori Method, Maria Montessori discovered children learn more successfully via self-guided experimentation and she was a big believer in empowering children to contribute.
Some of the key features for toys to be considered “Montessori” are firstly that it doesn’t have flashing lights and lots of pop-ups.
The reason behind this is you want your child's brain to make the connection between an action and consequence and this is taken away when a child presses a button, music blares out and random items pop up all over the place. Not only that, noisy and flashing toys can be overstimulating too.
Next up they should made from natural materials. Wood, rubber, steel etc. all make great materials as they are all different textures, temperatures, and weight, making them sensory rich for your little ones.
Montessori Toys for Infants and Toddlers
Our wooden balance board fits perfectly into this bracket, as not only is it wooden, but it is also curved and smooth, making for an all-over sensory experience.
The toys should promote STEM learning. STEM stands for science, technology, engineering, and mathematics. Your child develops an understanding of all of these through playing with Montessori aligned toys.
Puzzle toys are really good for encouraging problem solving, showing cause and effect and spatial awareness.
Finally, they should encourage independence. We should always be nurturing our children to be a capable member of the household.
This can be done by providing them with child sized alternatives to what we use. So, for example a small brush to help clean or a mini watering can to help with the gardening.
Our learning tower is also a good one for this, as it helps to promote independence with tasks in the kitchen and wherever else your little one wants to help out.
Let’s not forget our pikler triangle. A little fun fact about this is that although it is heavily associated with the Montessori Method, it was actually developed by Hungarian pediatrician Dr. Emmi Pikler over 100 years ago!
It allows children to learn their own boundaries, in their own time and that is something Dr. Emmi strongly believed in.
Not only that, but it also develops gross motor skills, teaches creativity, encourages self-confidence and builds concentration which fits in perfectly with the principles of Montessori.
So as you can see, there are lots of reasons to incorporate Montessori inspired toys into your child’s life and they are the very same reasons we developed our own range too.
Montessori Toys - FAQ's
Q. Why are Montessori toys wooden?
WA lot of Montessori toys are wooden because natural materials are preferred. They are more visually appealing, safer than plastic and allow for more imaginative play. If our own Pikler triangle was made out of plastic instead if wood, it wouldn't have the same look or charm as it does now, nor would it be as safe.
Q. Are Montessori toys worth it?
In our opinion, 100% yes! They benefit your child's learning and development. Plus they tend to be high quality, meaning they will last and will be able to be passed down to future siblings, just like with our very own balance board.
Q. How to organise Montessori toys?
In order not to overwhelm children, ideally you want to only have a few toys out at once. It is preferred for toys to be on a shelf and rotated when you see your child is losing interest in that particular toy. It is all about following your child's lead.
Q. Where to buy Montessori toys?
You can purchase them from a whole range of places but make sure it is a reputable seller. Plus you can also purchase our Balance Board, Pikler Triangle and Learning Tower direct from our website.