Books! We all have them. Some of us have a lot of them. How do we best store them? We want to protect the books, we want to display them beautifully and we want them to be easily accessible to our children. For babies, toddlers and preschoolers it's definitely best to display them forward facing, so the child can see the cover. It's also best to avoid overcrowding or overwhelm, you can observe your child but it's never a good idea to overcrowd a bookshelf! In a Montessori environment, we want bookshelves that:
- Protect our books, keep them safe.
- Keep our children's spaces tidy, make it easy for the child to put away their books and maintain order in their environment.
- Display the books forward facing, this makes it easier for the very young child to identify their books or find the book they are looking for.
- Are easy for the child to access, reach and use independently.
- Look beautiful!
For babies and toddlers, I also look for bookshelves that:
- Are really safe, stable and are able to be used for the child to pull to standing or hold for support.
- Will display board books and small-sized books where the child can see the cover.
- Will hold or display a smaller amount of books. To maintain order in their environment I suggest only a few perhaps 6-12 books in an infant/toddler room.
- Have low or no VOCs, are ethically made and are well made/strong, that will last.
For Otto (at 10 months) we have just moved from a book basket and displaying books on his shelves to a little book box, this one works perfectly in his environment. Our book box is c/o Tidy Books and I have a discount code for you (UK, US & EU) at the end of the post.
Although this book box can hold a lot of books I put six at the front and six on the other side. You could put the book box in the middle of a space or at a 90° angle to the wall so the child can easily access it both sides, but it's working for us like this. It is entirely child/infant/toddler sized so it works well in his room.
Tidy Books have a good range of bookshelves to suit Montessori home or school environments including Montessori Style (with lower case, red/blue letters), Original (with no letters), Alphabet (lower case with plain or coloured letters) or Personalised. For Babies and Toddlers, I like the book box.
Tidy Books are available in the UK, US and throughout Europe (France, Germany, Italy). If you order through one of these sites you can receive a 10% off your bookshelf or book box using the discount code HWM10. You can also follow Tidy Books on Instagram for lots of bookshelf inspiration!