These large bells are hard to find in Australia... except at Christmas time. I hope you had a lovely day! Earlier in the year I almost ordered the bell from overseas, I just couldn't find one locally. I removed this bell from one of our old Christmas decorations, put some (Christmas) ribbon through the loop and here it is, a Montessori bell on a ribbon!
Otto approaches his bell gently and slowly with an open hand. Otis used to really hit his with a closed fist. So different!
So what is the Montessori bell on a ribbon? It's simply a large bell hanging by a ribbon, it's really a tactile mobile and can be hung anywhere you would put your infant's mobiles, over a movement mat, or playmat, in their room or in a living area. It's also easy to hang on the infant's playgym. Typically offered around three to four months.
The child is learning cause and effect and is developing the core strength and coordination needed to raise their little arms and stretch out their fingers to tap or bat at the bell. The child is having an impact on his environment which is significant for infants who are not yet purposefully grasping or crawling. The child is getting feedback and is learning about himself and his environment.
'I can tap the bell and I can cause it to ring', it's great for their ego!
A child’s body is continuously growing and changing, and his environment needs to offer different opportunities for movement. We need to provide an environment that promotes movement at every stage in development. The bell acts as an auditory stimulus for movement and provides glorious feedback (the lovely ring of the bell).
"Very often parents and adults understand that children need to have space to move around in. This knowledge is not enough. There must be concrete activities to perform, because if we wish to promote the integration of the human being, the motor skills should always be used in the service of the mind. When this happens, the activity becomes self-satisfying. The pleasure resides in the activity itself and in the result that can be obtained from it, in the joy of moving the body in space in response to interior desires and in having success in what you do. There is no need for prizes or approval to keep the child working at his activity." Understanding the Human Being.
If you are looking to order a bell on a ribbon I can recommend:
- Bell and Ring on a Ribbon at Bunny + Bella (UK).
- Bell and Ring Montessori Mobile Gift Set at Essential Montessori (US).
- Montessori Hanging Toys for Babies - Hanging Bell and Hanging Ring at Pink House (US).
Otto's Christmas bell (as pictured above) is around 2.5 inches across (similar here), if you are going to DIY you could use a bell as small as this at 1.5 inches (which is the same size as Otis' bell here).