Black and White Mobiles for Montessori Babies - including alternatives to the Munari!
Have you ever tried to make or use the traditional Montessori Munari Mobile? It is the first in the visual mobile series offered to a newborn at around 2-3 weeks of age.
They are incredibly hard to balance and our glass globe broke while Otis was underneath it. We replaced the globe but I never again felt really safe around it. With our next baby, we are going to skip the Munari! We are fortunate that we have access to a lot of resources and already have a few black and white mobiles to try, so I thought it would be nice to share these with you. I want to say there are other options, you can skip the Munari and still provide the very young infant with the same opportunities the Munari provides - black and white contrasting images for the infant to focus and track, develop their visual sense. Remember we can also provide lots of contrasting images in books, pictures, and fabrics.
As with all Montessori mobiles, I try to stick by the rule of no more than five elements (five birds etc), the whale mobile is my only exception (because I love it so much). This is as not to overstimulate the infant. If you are going to DIY or use an alternative mobile keep this number in mind.
Most of these mobiles have abstract elements (shapes, images etc) however if you are going to use a mobile that depicts real animals or objects make them something that can make a realistic motion (floating, flying) which is why we typically use animals that swim (water animals, fish, whales) or that fly (butterflies, birds, dragonflies).
1. Munari Mobile (this one is from Bunny + Bella, UK). Etsy is a great place to find Munari Mobiles, I would look for one fully assembled (worldwide). If you are going to make or assemble a Munari yourself make it well before your baby is due.
2. Black and White Baby Mobile (Australia).
3. Mother and Baby Whale Mobile (US).
4. Crane Mobile (US).
5. Flensted Swallow Mobile (US).
6. Montessori Black and White Mobile (US).
We have mobiles number 2, 3 and 4 so we will have to see which one our baby responds to best, we might not have time to use them all. The whale and bird mobiles look lovely in any children's space, bedroom or even in a nature area, so have some longevity.
If you are new to using Montessori mobiles or mobiles in general with an infant, keep in mind to put the mobiles in a movement or play area, not above their bed, to keep the visual mobiles out of the child's reach, mobiles should be placed slightly in front of the child (not directly above) and the Munari should be around an arms length above the child. Some movement is recommended, so a gentle breeze (open window) can work well. If you are new to using Montessori mobiles please feel free to ask any questions!