Educational Toys Maria Montessori Would Love

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If someone told you how butterflies start off as caterpillars you might vaguely understand or care but if someone showed you the process, turned it into a visual, hands on experience, you are going to understand the power of metamorphosis on a much higher level.  This is why a large focus in Montessori schools is hands on learning. In other words, Montessori is about teaching in ways proven to inspire success and a deeper curiosity for learning.  Learning should evoke fun; therefore any toy that sparks laughter and intrigue while secretly teaching is approved by Montessori standards. Here are 8 great toys Maria Montessori would have loved, add them to your gift-list this holiday season and you’ll be sure to delight both guardian and child!


1. Super Sorting Pie by Learning Resources




Kids are naturally drawn to the bright colors and delicious design of this Super Sorting Pie and putting together the pieces are almost as much fun as… well, eating a real pie! There are a number of ways for a child to use their own creativity to make the perfect pie while in the process they will be learning and getting comfortable with number placement. Keep in mind, this gift is extra perfect for kids who already have grocery related toys or mini-kitchens.






2. Froggy Feeding Fun Matching Game




For young ones that are just learning how to match their colors and numbers, this frog-filled game is the perfect push towards matching success! Kids will grow and fine-tune their identification, number, and color recognition skills as they play the game. Froggy Feeing Fun involves rolling a set of dice and then matching the colors and numbers to the right chip to feed the frog.








3. Melisa & Doug, See & Spell Learning Blocks


Having worked in a Toy Store back in high school, I know how popular Melissa and Doug products are—among both parents and children. Montessori classrooms regularly use blocks, like these See & Spell Blocks, to help kids learn how to spell common words much earlier than usual. Not only does this toy offer fun but it makes the kids feel accomplished and more confident when they are able to do it.

4. Design Your Own Table Mat

As a kid I loved these personable placements more than anything!! Being able to decorate their own space at the dinner table makes kids feel special, like they are important. It also allows for a release of creativity time and time again, kids will be able to redo their placemat whenever they please because the crayons can be wiped off. This mat gets bonus points because it also teaches children proper placement of eating utensils, sharpening up etiquette without being overbearing.




5. Hug-a-Planet; The Squishy World-Map Pillow


Instead of getting your child just another teddy bear to cuddle with, get them this Hug-a-Planet Pillow designed to mimic the planet! Geography is so important for kids to understand but it’s routinely struggled with, partly because it’s rare that kids actually look—up close—at a map of the world. With this pillow lying around, they are sure to soak in more geography, regardless if they notice or not.


6. Let’s Play House Doll Felt Set


The Montessori Method of teaching incorporates a lot of felt boards in their curriculum; children enjoy mixing and matching felt pieces, allowing them endless hours to explore their creativity in a healthy way. Included in this Play House Doll Felt Set are over 20+ felt pieces, as kids dictate a world of their own they will also be strengthening their eye-hand coordination.











7. Grow Your Own Butterfly Kit



This Grow Your Own Butterfly Kit offers nonstop fun; whoever you gift this too will enjoy watching the most amazing process, the metamorphosis of a caterpillar becoming a butterfly. Introduce children to the wonders of the scientific world; allow the mystery of a cocoon to puzzle their brains as they wait with anticipation for the birth of the butterflies.










8. The Ultimate Crystal Growing Kit



The most glamorous science gift you can give someone, the gift of growing an endless supply of crystals! If the children on your gift list are a little bit older, perhaps they would enjoy the magic of growing their own crystals with this hands-on learning experience. Who knows, perhaps you will light a fire within the gifted—sparking a great scientific future!



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