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With the ever-growing influence the media has on our lives, its effect has boomeranged onto the younger generation. Then along comes Montessori Education. The name has grown ten-fold over the years, and very well so. The stacker toy that your toddler enjoys, the wooden rattle your infant adored, and the blocks they spent hours on, are all Montessori pedagogy inspired toys. Its simple yet effective methods build on your baby's instinctive curiosity and harness it for gradual growth.
Dr Maria Montessori developed the reputed Montessori method, at the beginning of the 20th century. Her philosophy of pedagogy revolves around building an environment that supports child-led activities, which enables them to boost their development skills through their own capabilities.
She often referred to these developmental activities as "work," believing that children engage well with a specific set of educational tools and uninterrupted 'work' time. These Montessori activities develop their intellect, motor skills, and social-emotional abilities. Although your baby will need you to familiarize them with the Montessori toys or activities, it is their decision to engage and grow with them.
So, what are the features of Montessori education, at a glance?
The Montessori development toys are inspired by the education they are named after. While supporting your baby to tap into their innate curiosity to learn and grow, the toys also allow your baby to experiment and form decisions of their own.
Toys with flashy lights, artificial sounds, or batteries could be distracting and unnecessary for your little bundles of joy. Montessori educational toys are simple and made with a design that doesn’t confuse their budding minds. Your baby will prefer the sound of the soft wooden rattle, which is much more stimulating than an absurd, dancing car.
Montessori wooden toys are brilliant on their own. The vital task of placing one wooden stack on top of another will not only boost your toddler's fine motor skills but will also actively stimulate their active memory.
Montessori toys are wooden or made from natural materials like cloth or cotton. Maria Montessori believed that these materials introduced the importance of nature to the blossoming minds of children. Moreover, they are beautiful, healthy, and safe for babies.
For example, while buying Montessori toys for newborns, look for a wooden rattle. The wooden rattle is a versatile toy made from non-toxic neem wood. It will make a terrific teether as the baby comes of age.
Babies should be exposed to STEM topics early in their childhood. It is said to be the optimal time to do so. Montessori development toys boost their cognitive skills and promote independence.
Take an object permanence box, for instance. As your toddler drops the ball through the hole, it will appear in front of them instantly. This teaches them cause and effect while also sharpening their memory and hand-eye coordination.
Your baby can master one particular skill by repeating the same activity until they grasp the concept. Similarly, to support your munchkin in doing so, Montessori toys try to focus on one skill at a time to reduce distractions and stress. Like a flashcard that introduces them to a realistic representation of the topic on focus.
Now that you know while looking for Montessori toys it’s best to look out for something simple with a focus on a particular skill. Here are some companions that BabyG recommends for your munchkins.
Amish ball is perfect for developing infants hand-grip. This Montessori toy has twelve sections sewn together providing easy access for an infant to grab onto and move with both their hands.
It is best to hang the soft plush toy as a mobile in the third month, to strengthen hand muscles and encourage kicking their feet. This hand-washable soft toy for babies is also a great alternative to a regular ball as it doesn't roll too far away from your infant, as they grow more mobile and try to reach for it.
Encouraging hand-eye coordination and building their fine motor skills, this is the best Montessori toy for 3 to 6-month-olds.
Age: 3 Months +
Learning object permanence is an important life skill for kids and is heavily recommended that babies be introduced to the Montessori toy in their first year.
Your baby learns that an object can disappear from view and still exist, developing their early memory. Understanding this will help them tenfold in their cognitive development, preparing them for future reasoning and expressive language. This Montessori activity also improves their memory, concentration and focus while they develop their hand-eye coordination and fine motor skills.
Age: 1 Year +
With Montessori wooden toys, where do we even start? Infants are interactive right from the very start. Although they cannot follow you around nor babble about their day to you, your little munchkins find a way to communicate with you. And rattles are an excellent toy to build on that blooming response.
Little Jamun presents you with an excellent product for you to do so. This wooden rattle makes an ideal rattle for a 6-month-old. As your baby grows with the product they will learn to count and adore the pretty wooden rattle.
Slowly waving the rattle in front of your newborn, will help them boost their eye-tracking skills while stimulating their auditory senses.
Age: 6 Months +
Realistic representation helps your munchkin gain an understanding of the real world. This is an important trait of Montessori education, and BabyG follows through. This Montessori toy for toddlers is what your baby needs, as they build on their early language skills.
Although Montessori toys are great, babies need their parents to introduce these new activities and toys to them. And this is an amazing non-toxic Montessori toy to do so. Through the use of motherese, you can introduce them to their daily routines and boost their cognitive skills.
Age: 1 Year +
Here’s a Montessori counting toy that will fascinate your toddler. The non-toxic building blocks are made from beechwood which is often used for teethers. These Montessori open-ended toys are a safe and intriguing option for your little one.
Designed with letters and numbers, the blocks and the flashcards familiarise your munchkin to mathematical concepts like addition, substation, multiplication, and division. Such a block is instrumental in developing their STEM skills.
Age: 24 Months +
A Montessori toy is designed to boost a particular skill set. Nevertheless, the toy's intended purpose isn't restricted by its age limitation.
You need to evaluate your baby's developing needs and structure their milestones. Don't be afraid to go back and repeat the activities with these Montessori toys. Remember your baby's possibilities are endless.
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