With its emphasis on kids being independent, more parents are turning into Montessori-style learning and playing at home. The goal is to raise kids who want to explore, discover, do things on their own, and not rely on technology to be entertained. And one of the first ways that parents can incorporate the Montessori teachings is by creating a Montessori-inspired nursery for their babies.
With the use of natural colors, the idea that everything has a place, furniture that allows kids to be independent, and more, a Montessori nursery can easily transition into a space for toddlers when babies have mastered everything in their bedroom space. The key to keeping infants interested in their nursery setup is to incorporate things that hold their attention and allow babies to participate in what they want to do when old enough to crawl or walk. When this is done, not only is the nursery a place to slumber, but it is a place to stimulate the brain as well.
Here are ways to create a Montessori-inspired nursery.
10 Use Natural Colors
Montessori does not have anything against the use of colors. It is how the colors are used that is important when it comes to the Montessori method.
According to GuidePost Montessori, colors should be a part of babies’ lives. However, if bright colors are part of the bedroom decor, it can overstimulate babies. When this happens, little ones can have problems falling asleep. This is why natural colors are chosen so that the environment in which to rest is serene, helping babies get the amount of sleep they need for naps or bedtime.
9 Put Mattress On The Floor
Many parents who follow Montessori teachings believe that children from the age of babies and up should be on a mattress on the floor to make them as independent as possible. However, there are those that would prefer to keep their babies in a bassinet or crib until they are a bit more mobile. Either of which is fine when creating a Montessori nursery.
According to FamilyEducation, the goal is to have babies use a mattress that is on the floor when they are crawling and walking so that they can get out of bed when done sleeping on their own. To the chagrin of some parents, this may be done in the middle of the night. But, per the publication, parents may be surprised to find that babies will put themselves back to sleep after exploring their space. And they may even be better sleepers for it.
8 Have Area Specific For Play
Specific areas to play in the nursery allow for one toy to be taken into the play space at a time. This teaches babies from a young age where to bring their toys to play with, and where to return them when done.
As babies get older and can crawl to where their toys are located, they can grab what they want. This is because all toys are at a height that babies can reach so that they can choose the toy that strikes their fancy at playtime.
7 Include Kid-Sized Furniture
In the nursery, kid-sized furniture is a must. This is because the more that little ones learn to do on their own, the less assistance they need from their parents.
According to KATANABANAkid-sized furniture allows kids to get into chairs on their own, grab books on their own, and even take clothing out of their wardrobes to get dressed on their own.
While babies may not be doing any of those things for many months, the fact that these pieces of furniture are already incorporated into the nursery may help babies feel comfortable navigating their bedroom world at a younger age than some given that everything is to their height. And this independence will follow babies as they age, making them feel secure to try things on their own.
6 Keep The Area Technology-Free
Given that babies have “sensitive periods” in their lives where they are receptive to learning about any and everything in the surrounding environment, according to Chesterfield Montessori School, technology should not be used. And if it has to be, it should be done sparingly as kids get older.
With this being said, keeping technology out of the nursery is a necessity for babies. Therefore, no televisions, stereos, battery-operated toys, or the like should be in the bedroom under the Montessori method to help babies’ brains to develop like gangbusters as they work to understand the world around them.
5 Include Rainbows
Rainbows are incorporated into Montessori learning, according to Montessori Official as a result of how the “vivid colors usually draw their attention.” And when the attention is drawn to learning toys, there is nothing but positives that can come out of the situation.
This does not mean that every learning toy needs to be a rainbow. A few select ones that help with motor skills and dexterity will help babies with their cognitive development and understand what is happening all at the same time.
4 Incorporate A Low-Lying Mirror
The Montessori method recommends incorporating a mirror in the nursery to help facilitate gross motor movement, according to Monti Kids.
Further still, per the publication, the use of a mirror works for babies through older kids. The goal along the way is to “support visual activity, movement, cognitive development.” All of which supports babies and later on, kids’ independence.
3 Wardrobe Accessible
Though bedrooms come with closets, most are not to the specifications that would allow kids to access them. As such, having a wardrobe that allows kids to pick and choose their own clothes allows for independence not only with getting dressed but with style as well.
According to How We Montessoriwardrobes that can be put in the corner of the room or a space that is out of the way but allows kids access to it is an important part of fostering a sense of self, and problem-solving skills, and more.
While babies will not use this for some time, when they are able to crawl over to the wardrobe or even walk to it, little ones can make a decision about what to wear when most babies their age have no choice in the matter.
2 Make Shelves Low To The Ground
When putting out toys for babies to play with, it is important per the Montessori school of thought that little ones not only see what their options are and that there is a place for everything, but that babies are able to access all the Montessori toys regardless of their size.
According to Montessori Method, the shelf size that parents are looking for is no higher than one to two feet. This will let crawling babies access everything on the bottom of the shelving unit and grow with it so that the upper shelves can be used as infants grow into toddlers.
1 Include Wooden Toys
Dr. Maria Montessori believed that wooden toys were the most beautiful of all toys and enhanced the environment in which children played and learned, according to TOPPONCINO Company. Furthermore, playing with wooden toys teaches kids to know the importance of “natural materials” from a young age.
Per the publication, playing with wooden toys is more relevant than ever given that people are working towards getting away from materials that are not sustainable. The most prolific of which is plastic. As such, even if not following the Montessori method, trying wooden toys in the nursery may enhance how babies learn while helping to protect the environment at the same time.
Source: GuidePost Montessori, KATANABANA, FamilyEducation, Chesterfield Montessori School, Montessori Official, Monti Kids, How We Montessori, Montessori Method, TOPPONCINO Company.
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