If you’re new to Montessori toys, figuring out what toys are appropriate for different age groups can seem confusing. You want to buy products that will actually aid in your child’s development, so finding the right toys that are age appropriate is essential for their learning and growth. Where should you start?
Montessori toys are designed with simplicity in mind. By keeping toys simple, children can learn to use their imagination and curiosity to play instead of relying on overly bright or loud toys to entertain them passively. However, different stages of development require different toys for kids to play with and develop skills. We’ll go over the best Montessori toys by age group, starting from birth up to eighteen months, so that you’ll be able to pick out some great options that will stimulate your child’s imagination and development.
What Makes a Toy a Montessori Toy?
A Montessori toy is crafted specifically to engage with the child’s learning, curiosity, and imagination development. These toys are simple, practical, and made with natural materials. Because these kinds of toys are focused on being rooted in reality and they’re well-made, you won’t find any battery-operated pink plastic unicorn toys here, nor any action figures that shoot slime.
Just because Montessori toys aren’t flashy doesn’t mean that children don’t like playing with them; kids even find them fun and engaging over other kinds of toys. When the focus is on developing skills or real-life concepts, it will help kids discover the world around them in a fun and playful environment.
Montessori toys for kids focus on using all-natural materials. Other toys use brightly colored plastics, but Montessori toys for kids focus more on how the child will engage with the toy. Bright colors can ultimately be distracting to the child and will hinder learning opportunities. The most common materials for Montessori toys are wood, as they provide a natural experience for kids to play.
Ages 0-4 Months
Though newborn babies won’t be doing a ton of playtime at this age, we still believe it’s important to provide them with Montessori toys by age group. At this stage, babies will be developing fine motor skills, as well as visual and grasping skills. You’ll want simple toys that are easy to hold and fun to look at.
Rattles are great toys for babies of all ages, particularly for newborns. Not only are rattles entertaining, but they also help the baby to work on visual tracking, motor, and grasping skills. You can play with your baby by shaking and moving the rattle in their line of vision, which will help with their visual tracking development. Or, you can let your baby grasp and hold the rattle. This wooden rattle is made with all-natural materials, so it’s safe for your babies to bite and play with. It’s an excellent high-quality toy for a baby who’s just starting to learn about their world.
Ages 4-8 Months
When choosing Montessori baby toys for this age group, try to stick with products that encourage open-ended play and safe exploration. As they become more mobile and curious about the world around them, you’ll need to provide them with toys that will help them develop skills. Around this age, they’ll start to roll over, grasp objects, and even put objects in their mouths to learn more about their environment. It’s important to provide them with safe, non-hazardous Montessori baby toys for when they put their toys in their mouth.
These crocheted balls in bright contrasting colors are great toys for stimulating babies’ visual development as they watch the shape and color of the balls. It can also help to build babies' fine motor skills, as they will want to reach and touch the yarn.
As your baby grows, having teething toys, like this interlock disc, will help with teething as well as developing the baby’s hand-to-hand transfer, fine motor skills, and hand-eye coordination.
Ages 8-12 Months
At this age of development, you’ll want to help your baby understand object permanence, concentration, cause, and effect. You’ll want to start providing them with basic shape-fitting puzzles that will help them develop concentration skills and prepare them for bigger movements.
This spinning drum with a bunch of different colors is perfect for tummy time. It will entice your baby to develop muscles to push up to spin the toy because of its noise and bright colors. Besides developing strength, it also builds hand-eye coordination skills.
This object permanence toy allows babies to learn about object permanence by repeating the same task over and over again. They will learn to truly understand the concept that something can exist even when they don’t see it. They will also learn about cause and effect.
One of the first kinds of puzzles for your baby to solve, this egg and cup toy, will allow your kid to figure out how to grasp with one hand and how to put the egg back into the cup. This toy builds concentration and fine motor skills.
Ages 12-18 Months
At this age, Montessori toys for toddlers should reflect the huge strides that they are making in mobility. Around this time, children will become more active by sitting, standing, crawling, and walking. All of this increased mobility will free up their hands to explore even more. Along with their increased mobility, they will also become more ready to take on puzzles, language skills, and concentrated tasks.
This horizontal dowel that comes with three same-sized rings will encourage concentration, focus, and fine motor skills.
If you’re looking for Montessori toys for toddlers that can work on language and number skills, then this iDoddle toy is perfect. Specifically made to look like an iPhone, this toy will allow children to develop concentration and focus skills as they memorize the alphabet and numbers.It can be confusing figuring out the right Montessori toys by age group on your own. As your child grows from a newborn to a toddler, you'll find it necessary to keep their toys updated in order to help with their development. It’s best to choose ones that are safe and natural for your baby. We highly value safety and transparency, which is why we invite you to learn more about our products’ safety so you can make the best choices for your children.