Using the Montessori approach at home goes a long way in encouraging creativity and independence through self-paced and joyful learning. It’s incredibly easy for any parent to apply the principles at home, and best of all, they work wonders for all children even if your child doesn’t go to a Montessori school.
Here are some quick tips for implementing the Montessori method in your home.
Setting up your home Montessori style
Similar to a Montessori classroom, the goal here is to make your home more accessible and inviting to children. Don’t let perfection get in the way, just keep the bigger picture in mind: it’s about enjoying being with our children at home and supporting them at their level. Some easy ways to do this:
- Child-sized furniture – Choose a size where your child’s feet can sit flat on the ground.
- Child-sized tools – Look for small household tools like watering cans, brooms and dustpans.
- Store and rotate – Less is more! Remove clutter and keep just a few favourites out. After a while when your child loses interest, they can be rotated with the activities and toys that you have packed away.
- Make things accessible – Maria Montessori believed in the importance of creating a space where everything is within a child’s reach, even from a very young age. Set things up for your child to be more independent. For example, place low hooks for their bag and jacket and use a low shelf to arrange activities they can manage by themselves.
- Get down on their level – See the world through your child’s eyes by sitting on the floor to see what your home looks like at that level. You can adjust the height of various artwork and plants to make it more appealing.
- Make their bedroom a calm, safe haven – Simplicity is key here. Choose neutral, muted colours and soft lighting with warm, minimal glare. Make toys and clothes easily accessible to encourage independence. A floor bed is an integral part of a Montessori bedroom, which enables freedom of movement, independence and mobility. If space allows, a quiet reading corner with books is a wonderful addition.
Montessori activities at home
Montessori activities are all about being hands-on. They help build concentration and address the needs of the whole child by encouraging them to be curious and explore the world around them.
Here are some fun, easy Montessori activities to try at home:
- Arts and crafts – Painting, cutting, drawing, colouring, sewing, stamping, glueing – the options are endless when it comes to being creative!
- Music and movement – Dancing, riding a bicycle, singing, playing musical instruments (real or homemade with pots and pans), climbing, swinging and skipping.
- Practical life – Preparing their own snacks (spreading crackers, peeling and cutting bananas, squeezing orange juice), pouring water, helping cook and bake, washing dishes, cleaning, gardening and taking care of plants and helping with general household chores. You can place everything they need laid out on a tray at the ready, to make it more attractive to your child.
- Sensorial – Collecting natural objects, water play, spending time outside in nature, exploring fruits and veggies, exploring fabrics, smelling bottles, and working with playdough and clay.
- Eye-hand coordination – Threading, puzzles, sorting objects by size, colour and category, pegging work, and posting objects through a hole and cutting.
Back to basics
Setting up your home to encourage a Montessori lifestyle is a wonderful way to incorporate a simple, natural and back-to-basics approach to raising children. By combining our Montessori Parenting Tips with the advice above, you can create a calm, peaceful environment that will encourage self-learning and contribute to the happiness of the whole family.