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Filtering by Tag: montessori baby

Our Favorite Montessori-Friendly Books

Theresa

One of the aspects of parenting I was most excited about was sharing the magic and power of books with my children. Not only do I enjoy getting lost in a really good book (when I find/make the time), but I especially love reading to my babes. There are countless benefits to reading to babies and young children, including strengthening language, attention span, memory, creativity, and emotional understanding. Not to mention it is wonderful bonding time! I’ve been reading to D since day 1 (if nothing else, there’s always bedtime!) and it makes my heart happy to see her love of books already.

Although I am not strict about it, there are a couple of qualities I look for in books for my children, following a few Montessori principles.

10 Favorite Montessori-Friendly Books for Toddlers - Montessori in Real Life

Realistic Nature:

Most of our books are based in reality, meaning you don’t find a lot of talking animals and princesses. The Montessori belief is that young children, especially toddlers, learn best through reality (concrete) rather than fantasy (abstract). This does NOT mean we discourage pretend play. It just means we let toddlers and young children take the lead in their own pretend play, which is typically acting out real-life scenarios such as playing house or doctor. When children begin to fully understand the difference between reality and fantasy, fairy tales and fantasy books become more appropriate. So for now, most of our books involve real-life content and ideally realistic or at least beautifully-illustrated pictures!

10 Favorite Montessori-Friendly Books for Toddlers - Montessori in Real Life

Age-appropriateness

This includes both the durability, length, and content. When D was younger, we only had board books, but now she understands how to be careful with some of our larger hardcover books. I try to choose books that aren’t too text-heavy, and if they are, involve catchy rhymes or exciting illustrations that keep her attention. Sometimes her attention span for books just depends on the time of day! Lastly, I try to find books on topics that I think she will enjoy (such as babies), as well as new ideas (such as our solar system).

Favorite Montessori-Friendly Books for Toddlers - Montessori in Real LIfe

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase a product through one of these links, you won’t pay anything extra, but I will get a small commission, which helps keep this blog going. Thanks for supporting Montessori in Real Life!

10 of D’s Favorite Books

The Big Book of First Words - This is D’s favorite book right now, and honestly, mine too! It’s a little like “Where’s Waldo” but more toddler-friendly and less dizzying. ;) Each page features a different scene such a kitchen or zoo, and on the right side of the page has images of objects or animals to find within the scene. It’s a bit trickier than her other favorite, Let’s Find Momo. I think she especially loves how it’s a giant board book!

Here We Are: Notes for Living on Planet Earth - This book offers hope for all of us who love and want to help take care of our planet. It celebrates all of the beauty of Earth and the people on it. “You’re never alone on Earth.” :) There are so many fun pictures and topics within this book to talk about with a toddler.

All the World - This is such a beautifully illustrated book. It is a simple but poetic story about a family’s day from morning to night, and all the beautiful things we see and do. It also emphasizes the importance of togetherness. Everywhere Babies is done by the same illustrator and is another of our longtime favorites.

Press Here - This is D’s favorite interactive book. Although it is simply a book of dots, each page has instructions on how to make the dots create different patterns, e.g. tipping the book on its side to make them “fall down”. D loves feeling like she has had an effect on the dots’ pattern page after page.

Where Do I Sleep? - This has been a longtime bedtime favorite. For those not wanting a Pacific Northwest specific book, I Would Tuck You In is also similar and sweet. A simple but really beautifully illustrated story of where animals and their babies sleep. I love how realistic the illustrations are too!

The Wonderful Things You Will Be - I love the message this book sends; that a child can grow up to be anything they choose and there is value in it all. D loves the beautiful illustrations of children, and the pop-out page at the end! This is a wonderful gift for new parents/babies.

You Were the First - We gave this to D before S came along and it’s still one of her favorites. It tells the story of all baby’s firsts, and how the parents get to experience it all with them. It ends with “there may be a second or a third, to sleep in the basket with the yellow ribbon wound round…but you will always be our first”. It makes me tear up each time!

Wherever You Are: My Love Will Find You - Speaking of tearing up, this book always gets me! It is such a beautiful story of how a parent’s love is with their child wherever they go and whatever they feel. It’s a wonderful, comforting story for bedtime. This one’s story is a bit abstract, but as I said, I’m not super strict about every book being completely based in reality.

Eating the Alphabet - This is a colorful and classic book for teaching letters. I enjoy that it emphasizes the sound letters make rather than just the letter itself. Plus, D loves her food, so this one is extra fun for her! ;) I especially like that it introduces unusual fruits and veggies.

Seek and Count - As D becomes more interested in numbers, she’s really enjoyed this lift-a-flap number book. Each page features a surprise under the flap and counts up from one to ten. It’s simple but great for toddlers who are counting to 10. She loves to recall what is hidden on each page - great for memory!

You can find more of our other favorites listed in my interview with Kelsey Paff of Where The Board Books Are!

10 Favorite Montessori-Friendly Books for Toddlers - Montessori in Real Life

A Montessori Toddler Easter Basket

Theresa

Easter is only a week and a half away, so I felt compelled to write a short blog post along the theme! I love holidays, especially now that we have a little one, so it’s easy for me to go overboard with things like Easter Baskets. One of my favorite holiday traditions as a child was searching the house with my sisters for our hidden baskets of goodies. Though D doesn’t have the patience to search for a basket (yet), she is definitely old enough to appreciate the basket of goodies part!

Infant and Toddler Easter Basket Ideas - Montessori in Real Life

I had hoped to get this post written last week, but I’ll admit I only just picked out her basket stuffers this week. If you are like me, and heavily rely on Amazon prime, then hopefully this post won’t be too late for you either! :) I’m sharing ideas for a toddler Easter basket, as well as a few books and toys for your littlest ones! Happy egg (and basket) hunting, and Happy Easter!

Toddler Easter Basket Ideas - Montessori in Real Life

Toddler Easter Basket Ideas

Egg shakers - These are a little young for D, but I did have a thought to get two sets and make it a matching sound game! Might also save this one for the summer. Either way, egg shakers are typically a hit with babies and toddlers of all ages.

Layered Puzzle - Though this is still a bit too challenging for D, I saw the rabbit version of this layered wooden puzzle and had to grab it. Love how this teaches the concept of size, shade, and depth. I am interested to see how she uses it now!

Stickers - Stickers continue to be a favorite for D, and though I sometimes buy small sets at the local toy store, these larger sets from Amazon make so much more sense. As I’ve described before, I find it easiest to cut sticker sheets into strips and then fold back an edge to make peeling easier for a young toddler.

Toddler Easter Basket Ideas - Montessori in Real Life

Egg slicing/matching - Melissa and Doug always has fun wooden toys (not super Montessori but great for gifts), and this is no exception. D is big into color matching right now, and of course chopping, so this seemed perfect for her Easter basket.

Nesting chickens - Love this fun twist on the classic Russian nesting dolls. We have been talking a lot about eggs and hatching, so this fits with that theme nicely. I know D will love opening and closing these on repeat. If your child is still mouthing everything, I would wait on these.

Egg crayons - I am probably most excited about these egg crayons. They are big and chunky for toddler hands, and they are a fun and creative way to get D more interested in art this Spring!

Sunflower Grow Kit - This was in the dollar section at Target, and it’s such a fun idea! No guarantees that a sunflower will actually grow. ;) I couldn’t find the exact one I got online, but you might find it (and other Easter goodies) at the front of your local Target store too!

Toddler Easter Basket Ideas - Montessori in Real Life

Board Books

Whose Chick book - This is one of D’s favorite books right now. It’s a cute story about various birds who find an abandoned egg and try to figure out who it belongs to. It’s perfect for toddlers who love to make animal sounds with the bonus of learning about hatching eggs!

Touch & Feel Rabbit book - This was D’s favorite last year (10 months), and she still loves it, especially with that fuzzy tail! We got it to go with the stuffed Jellycat rabbit (mentioned below). Each page has a different texture, and the words are simple for the littlest of babes!

10 Little Chicks song book - One of my favorite Spring songs to sing as a toddler teacher was “10 Little Ducks”, and this is a very cute variation on this. Books that combine as songs are always a hit among babies and toddlers alike, and I’m excited for D to discover this one in her basket.

Little Chick puppet book - These finger puppet books are favorites for babies, and the pages are super thick and durable! D still reads her finger puppet books like this, but now she sticks her own finger in the puppet instead of waiting for me.

Baby Easter Basket Ideas - Montessori in Real Life

Baby Easter Basket Ideas

Duck pull toy - Perfect for your baby who is crawling or just starting to walk. They will love pulling the mama duck around, and nestling baby duck in to go along for the ride.

Rabbit stuffed animal - D has many stuffed animals but this is always a favorite. It is so soft and just the right size for snuggling. I love the Jellycat stuffed animals in general, and the books to go with them!

Egg shakers - These are simple but beautiful egg shakers that make a really nice, soft sound. The small size is perfect for little hands to hold onto and shake.

Teethers - I wish I’d gotten this for D last Easter! This is such a sweet set of themed teethers, and it seems as though you can never have enough when your baby is teething or just mouthing everything.

Lamb teether - Just another cute teether option for babies!

Baby Easter Basket Ideas - Montessori in Real Life

Note: This post contains affiliate links. If you purchase a product through one of these links, you won’t pay anything extra, but I will get a small commission, which helps keep this blog going. Thanks for supporting Montessori in Real Life!