Did you know that Beginning Montessori are closing? After ten years of making (by hand) quality Montessori materials, Carrie and Shane have decided to close up shop. Beginning Montessori has a special place in my heart as my children have used almost all of their materials. When Otis was little, Beginning Montessori were one of only a few stores making infant materials. I wish Carrie, Shane and their two sweet daughters all the very best for the future!! When you order from Beginning Montessori you know you are ordering from the best. Carrie was part of the first class of... Read more →


Today I want to share with you a subscription service that is a game changer! There are a lot of Montessori subscription services available. Until now there hasn't been one I would recommend. I am actually really disappointed that I've only now found Lovevery as they are for children from birth to 12 months. But if you are a new parent or are expecting, I'm excited that you may like and use this. I get a lot of emails from parents who don't know what to do with their new babies - this is for you! In the months after... Read more →


In January we moved our family of five out of our home in Brisbane (Australia) to Wiltshire in England. Otto was three months old when we left. As you can imagine it's a big move that required a lot of planning. We spent over a month in temporary accommodation and much longer without any of our shipped toys and belongings. If I was going on a holiday for a week or so I wouldn't worry about bringing any mobiles or many toys or materials. But for a couple of those weeks, we were still in Brisbane, my husband was still... Read more →


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... Read more →


When Otis found some holographic cardstock in his paper stash, he wanted to make a mobile for Otto. The Octahedron and Dancers Mobiles have been Otto's favourites so far and it is in part due to the nice shiny, metallic paper. While ours is not as elegant as the Dancers, nor as complicated to balance, Otis loved making it, Otto loves using it and I have to believe that it's somewhat age and developmentally appropriate for Otto. We used this holographic card (Australia) but similar can be found here. Otis used holographic card, stencils, pencil, scissors, glue, tape, fishing line... Read more →


Around here this week, this is just a snapshot of some of the materials Otto is currently using at three months! He constantly has his fingers in his mouth and is chewing on his hands. After finding Otto gnawing on the Skwish, I ordered what is known as a Montessori Teething Ball or the Perfect Pacifier. I ordered ours from here (Australia). I need to pass it to Otto but he can independently hold it, bring it to his mouth or throw it away. Montessorians prefer it as it is easily manipulated by the child, it provides relief (from the... Read more →


I want to share with you this cute mobile that Otto has been using and absolutely loving. We've used it hanging on the play gym and now over the movement area. The child can bat at or pull on the ring to make the wooden bells (or chimes) ring. The sound is lovely although Otto, like most children I'm sure, gets a little vigorous and swishes them around. He also tries really hard to put the ring in his mouth, he's definitely teething. Like most tactile mobiles this is good for developing concentration, coordination, arm and core strength, visual tracking... Read more →


Before Otto was born I went into one of our local baby/toy stores. I wanted to see in person the baby car seat we had chosen, normally I'm happy ordering online avoiding such places. I was totally overwhelmed. The store was so bright and overstimulating, I wanted to leave immediately. It made me appreciate the Montessori knowledge and materials that we have accumulated over the years. It also made me understand how confused and overwhelmed many new parents must be, thinking they need all of these things, possibly not knowing there is another way. Most of the Montessori materials are... Read more →


I've written extensively about the Montessori mobiles, but what if they just aren't for you, what if you are looking for inexpensive alternatives using materials from around the home? Here are a few ideas. Plants! Otto has a smaller plant in his room that he will often focus on, it's well positioned next to his movement mat. The area pictured above is under a window so this monstera plant's large leaves will move gently in the breeze, providing just enough movement to engage Otto. This plant also provides interesting shadows which I can see him observing later in the day.... Read more →


Is the young child capable of concentration? How about a child of one month? How long can they concentrate for? I know that a young child, from birth, is capable of concentration. Sometimes we need to see it ourselves before we can believe it. A young child needs to be given the opportunity to concentrate. They need time and space. They need for us, the adult, to be patient, not to interrupt. We need to provide a home environment that is just right, not too much (stimulus) and not too little. It's what I love about the Montessori approach, it... Read more →


Awesome Montessori Playgym Ideas

I'm starting to look around for ideas for Otto's playgym. You know I'm hanging his ball and perhaps a bell on a ribbon, ring on a ribbon and a few other interesting toys. I've been looking around for some inspiration! "When the infant, who has been looking at a toy hanging above him and intuitively reaching for it, finally reaches it and makes it move, this is an exhilirating moment. Instead of just being cared for and acted upon by others, the infant has reached out and intentionally acted upon his environment. He has literally "changed the world." Carefully selecting... Read more →


Mobiles are considered to be the child's first work but have you ever wondered what are the benefits of the mobiles, why go to all the effort, what's the big deal? There are physiological and psychological benefits to using the Montessori mobiles with your infant. "The process of myelinization of the nerve fibres is very quick and begins with the eye muscles. The child learns to control them in one month allowing him to follow what is happening in the environment much better. This is already an important step, since it implies a freedom to observe. Adults should recognize this... Read more →


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... Read more →


Do I have an unhealthy obsession with Etsy? Perhaps so. Here is what I am loving (and possibly buying) on Etsy this week! Butterfly Mobile - Etsy is the best place to find Montessori mobiles and I am always drawn to the butterfly mobile. Montessori Grasping Beads - includes wooden and coloured rubber beads. Organic Plush Topponcino and Hyde Park Organic Cover - I have ordered this cover, I love neutrals but I love this design too. Wool Puddle Pad/Change Mat - a reminder that you don't need a plastic, non-compostable/recyclable baby change mat, there are better options! Butterfly and... Read more →


Image: The Montessori Company, Home Environment 5-12 Months. We are in the process of planning a Montessori nursery and it can sometimes feel overwhelming. Today I wanted to share with you a new feature at The Montessori Company that can guide you through the process. The Montessori Company is dedicated to ensuring the beauty and philosophical consistency of Montessori environments everywhere, making it easy for parents and guides to buy hand-crafted products designed to follow Maria Montessori's philosophy. On The Montessori Company website, you can view three Montessori nurseries or rooms (one pictured above) and you can click on each... Read more →