How to Set Up the Montessori Environment for Your Infant or Toddler
All parents of infants and toddlers know that keeping children in early childhood education organized and focused is difficult to say the least! We frequently hear from parents trained in the Montessori Curriculum that, when it comes to their own child, it’s almost impossible to apply the setup. Of course! Children will be children, and so when trying to apply the Montessori environment we have to be flexible and adapt. We’ve put together some tips to help you on your way.
Have some things on low shelves. Try to have one or two low shelves in your child’s bedroom that your child can safely climb on. On these shelves, place the books, toys and one or two larger pieces of equipment.
Cut down on shelves in a school room. If you’re setting up a school room for toddlers, try to cut down on the amount of shelves you’re using. If you set it up in the Montessori way, the stuff will be on the floor in a blink of an eye. There’s no use reprimanding the children just yet, so simply cut down on the amount of shelves.
Don’t bother with mats.Infants and toddlers are too young to learn to work with mats, so simply have one large carpet in the middle of the room.
Have one box full of items to explore.Small, interesting items will work best. When your toddler gets older, you can add another box.
Create a block area with a block box.Make sure the box itself is comfortably big enough to fit all the blocks in, so there’s no trouble putting them away.
Group items on the shelf. This should make it easy for everything to be put away. Toys go on the toy shelf, books go on the bookshelf, and so on.
Keep the floor space clear! Make sure there’s enough room for your infant or toddler to be able to crawl all around the room and scatter things as they go. Make sure things won’t be lost easily and nothing will be damaged.