A month or so ago we moved Otto (17 months) into Otis' old room. Otis (7yrs) doesn't like sleeping alone and I always found it difficult at bedtime if I was busy with Otto. So now Caspar (11yrs) and Otis are sharing a room.
Otto's new room is much larger. We haven't made many changes. Most of the furniture is the same. Above we've created a little reading nook. Previously Otis had his fossils and rocks/minerals on the wall unit but now we have some Schleich animals. We might even change it over to some of Otto's favourite Siku vehicles. Here is a little look around, I've tried to show some wider shots so you can see how the room flows.
I always try to put the low shelves and activities across from the bed so when he wakes he is enticed by the materials.
Floor Bed - promotes movement and independence, and perhaps safety at this age. There is no risk of him falling or climbing out of a cot.
Low Shelves - these are the perfect height and will hold around six to eight activities/baskets/trays. They are open shelves which always look lovely. The shelves with baskets and trays allow Otto to easily see his toys/materials to access them independently and put them away afterwards. Independence + order.
Activities and Materials - we currently have out a basket of Siku vehicles, Schleich and Papo dogs, simple wooden puzzles, first train set and, a ball push. The train set he uses with his brothers, if he was an only child I'm not sure I would put it in his room as he doesn't usually use it by himself. He also has a lot of toy/materials downstairs in the living type space (see here). We rotate our toys, including our large toys like our music marble tree and ball tracker upstairs and downstairs.
Music Player - with my other children at this age we put a CD player on their low shelves. CD players don't seem so relevant these days, but it is still so important the children have free access to their own music. There are a few MP3 players that are designed for toddlers and are completely safe for them to use. This one has a memory card so you can download the music (or audio books) and the child can press the buttons to make a selection.
Low Bookshelf - this bookshelf is perfect for toddlers, it has two sides and it stores just the right amount of books. We don't want too many books that Otto can't look after them or leaves them lying around. But we also need most of his favourites out. The books are stored/displayed forward facing which is preferred at this age.
Ball Tracker - a wonderful investment, it's a long term favourite. Fantastic for coordination, concentration and tracking skills. The ball tracker is in front of the built-in wardrobe as we are using the wardrobe for storage and don't want Otto inside it.
Soft Mattresses and Cushions - comfort is so important in Montessori spaces. Even toddlers need a space to chill out and relax. It's Otto's favourite place (other than his bed!). It's also a good spot to read with his dad or brothers.
Indoor Plants - I can finally put plants in Otto's spaces. He will touch the leaves and loves to water them but has no interest in digging/moving or destroying the plants. I have the base of the plants secured in a plastic bag so if he did tip it over the dirt wouldn't fall out but so far, at 16-17 months it's been nothing but respect. The plants allow Otto to care for them (living things) and they help to clean the air. Green leafy plants always make me feel calmer too, they are important for my wellbeing.
Love - most of all I want Otto to feel that he is loved in our home and especially in his bedroom.
Child Size Wardrobe - I can't tell you how much I love this wardrobe. It's the best I could find. It has lots of shelves and more than enough hanging space, it will grow with the child. It also has open shelving and natural timber.
Night Light - our night light is at the child's height so Otto can turn it on and off. It provides a warm glow which I love, nothing too bright.
Clothing - we have out only a small selection of clothing. Three shirts to choose from, one pair of pants and underwear (training pants). Shoes, socks and coats are stored downstairs. Choice can be overwhelming for children and this is all Otto needs right now.
Music Box - in the multi-coloured crochet basket is Otto's music box (you pull the string and it plays a lullaby) which is often used at night time. Usually, it's on or near Otto's bed.
Low Chair - this aids dressing, and undressing.
Laundry Basket - on the far right we have a basket for all of Otto's dirty clothes, he loves to put clothes in there.
Low Artwork - we don't have a lot of artwork in this room (I'm working on it), but the art we have is at the child's height.
Child's Bathrobe - on a low hook on the side of the wardrobe.
Mirror - at the child height behind the door (not pictured).
More than any Montessori elements we feel this room fits Otto's stage in development and it meets all of his physical and emotional needs. Follow the child!!