Montessori at Home - 12 month to 15 month old - What we did and what we loved.

Montessori at Home - 12 month to 15 month old - What we did and what we loved.

Montessori with your 12-month-old to 15 months old is such an exciting period! 

I feel it was the most interesting stage of growth for Shloka, she became more and more independent and I saw a sudden change in her attitude, I’m going to give you everything you’re going to need to get started with Montessori with your 12-month-old that worked for us and hopefully will work for you too !

Prepare Your Environment 

With Montessori, you need to start by preparing your environment. You need to prepare your environment for each of your child’s new developmental stages. This will help support your child through his/her sensitive periods. By this I don't mean investing a ton of money but tweaking things around and buying the relevant materials can definitely help.

At around 12 months you should switch your child to a floor bed. We have got one but somehow have been moving around due to repairs at home and are back to co sleeping because of lack of options. However a low bed offers your child a better perception of their environment and allows them to move forward in their path towards independence. If you're looking for one we have this one for Shloka.

An area for feeding should also be set up for your child by this time. It should include items such as a weaning table, weaning chair, and dining set (weaning set). You can get any of these tables or chairs

The area for work should be set up with aids for independence, age-appropriate toys and materials, and practical life activities. Use these aids for independence to start preparing your area for work:

While I have linked the ones we have they are also most popular and the best available locally. 

You’re going to want to set up an area for self-care at this time as well. This is normally done in the bathroom where other members of the family partake in self-care. You can add a small sink or a stool to access the sink. However if like us, you live in a cozy Mumbai apartment do what is convenient and feasible for your set up. Just make sure everything your child uses for self-care such as a toothbrush, hairbrush, hand towel, soap, etc are all within reach so he/she can independently access them.

TOYS & MATERIALS

When you start to fill your low shelves please remember that you don’t want to overwhelm your child with too many choices. Anywhere between 6-12 toys or materials is a good number to have out at one time. Also, keep in mind that rotating the materials every few weeks is highly suggested.

Here are just a few materials your 12-15-month-old may be interested in:

Again I have linked a few of these for your use and convenience. 

ACTIVITIES

Upon beginning a new activity or presenting a new material you need to remember that your child is only just learning to concentrate. As your child grows older he/she will be able to concentrate for longer periods of time. 

It is also important to note not to correct the child when they are concentrating. This will not allow them to build the skill of concentration. Instead, wait until they are finished and model the correct way to use the material for them continuing to present and model the activity or material to them each time until they correctly use the item.

Here are some activities your 12-15 month old may enjoy:

  • Climbing

  • Swinging

  • 1-2 Piece Wooden Puzzles

  • Sand Play

  • Using Open & Close Items

  • Singing

  • Rhymes

  • Point & Make Animal Sound

  • Transferring Work - transferring from one glass to another..

  • Washing Station

  • Animal Watching

  • Puddle Splashing

  • Mud Painting

PRACTICAL LIFE

Practical life activities are important because they allow your child to feel part of a community. They promote sensorial exploration, language development, and independence.

Start to introduce practical life activities to your child by first observe your child’s interests. Present the activity to your child remembering to practice beforehand. Starting with one activity and building more and more.

Start by trying one of these practical life activities and building from there:

  • Washing Fruit or Vegetables

  • Peeling Bananas

  • Stirring with a Spoon

  • Wiping Table with Cloth

  • Using a Fork or Spoon to Eat

  • Brushing Teeth

  • Washing Hands

  • Loading the Washing Machine

  • Putting Dirty Clothes in Hamper - She's loved this since she was crawling !

  • Putting Activities Away - time to clean up is our favourite song.

  • Throw Away Trash - we did this with her diapers / wipes if any

Remember that your child is in their first plane of development. Maria Montessori described this time as the absorbent mind. Your child is watching you. You should be modelling the behaviour you desire your child to have. 

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