A Little Background
Although I spent the majority of my teaching career teaching in public schools, I spent two years teaching in a Montessori school. I kind of stumbled into it, but it was a great two years and so much of what I learned during my time there has stuck with me, especially now as I am raising my own daughter. If you aren’t familiar with Montessori style education, it is basically learning to follow the child and create a space for them that allows them to explore and experiment with the world around them. You can learn more here.
What I Learned from Montessori
Although I never went through formal training, here is what really stood out to me from my time at the Montessori school: everything should have a purpose and everything should be beautifully and thoughtfully made. In other words, you don’t just give the baby a bunch of junk. Instead, give them fewer, but beautiful and well-made toys. My husband says I’m a bit of a toy snob, but what I learned from my time teaching Montessori really resonated with me!
If you give kids too many toys that really aren’t meaningful and that they can’t interact with in a purposeful way, they won’t value them and they will tire of them quickly. Instead, you should give them a few really amazing and well made pieces that are specifically designed to meet their needs in terms of developmental milestones. They will learn to respect their belongings, will enjoy interacting with them and will be fine tuning their motor and cognitive skills. I know I definitely pick the latter for my daughter!
So, how does Monti Kids fit into all of this? Well, being the “toy snob” that I am, I was searching the internet one day because I wasn’t finding the kind of quality toys for my daughter that I really wanted! I really wanted something for her that would be similar to the beautiful wooden pieces I once had in my classroom as a Montessori teacher, but I just wasn’t finding anything, until I came across Monti Kids!
Here’s the scoop on Mont Kids. When Montessori teacher Zahra became a mom, she struggled with finding interactive, well-made toys for her own child. She saw parents who were making educated choices for their children and who were left struggling to provide an enriching environment for them at home. So, Monti Kids was born! With entire kits based on developmental age delivered right to your door and video tutorials online to lead you the entire way, Monti Kids is helping parents make playtime purposeful for their little ones.
How It Works
You can find all the details about exactly how the program works here, but I’ll give you a quick overview. Every three months, you will be send a box containing a set of toys for your child. The toys will be based on how old your child is. Each toy is numbered and will be introduced one at a time, every two weeks. Before introducing the toy, you watch a short video online in the Monti Kids portal which teaches you how to model using the toy for your child. Then comes the fun part! Model using the toy for your little one and then sit back and watch them explore, discover and learn.
What I Thought
The teacher in me was blown away with Monti Kids! Just like everything in Montessori, nothing is without its purpose. From start to finish, I was so impressed with how much thought went into everything to ensure the best experience for both parents and children. Even the boxes the toys came in were aesthetically pleasing! Each box was also clearly labeled so you know which toy to introduce first, second, etc. One of the things I loved the most about the Monti Kids toys was how well made and beautiful each toy was! All of the toys were wooden and solid and so pleasing to the eye. No obnoxious characters or crazy colors! Thank goodness because that is a major pet peeve of mine! Anybody else?! Each toy that came with wooden balls also came with a little canvas storage bag which I thought was genius!
What Easton Thought
Easton was just as big of a fan as I was! I could tell because she insisted on carrying each one around the house with us after I’d introduce it to her. She loved them and I’m not surprised. Each toy was perfect for her age (13 months) and really was able to pique her interest. Because the toys are introduced in succession, she had practice refining skills needed for each toy in succession. It has been really amazing to sit and watch her concentrate on the toys and figure them out. You can totally see her little brain working!
A Few More Thoughts
Another thing I took away from my time teaching Montessori was keeping toys, books, supplies, etc. neatly displayed and easily accessible. This makes it easier for toddlers and children to see what they have available to choose to play with and it teaches them that everything has a place. I highly suggest doing something similar for your toy storage in whatever room you will be keeping your child’s toys. We already had bookshelves in our living room, so when Easton started crawling we anchored them to the wall and cleared off the bottom two shelves of each. We knew she’d be constantly going for anything that may be on the shelf, so we just put things she CAN touch on them. We have been using two of them for her Monti Kids toys and it works perfectly!
If you are the type of parent that hates clutter and wants to create a simple, enriching space for your child to learn and explore and grow, I cannot recommend Monti Kids enough, and you don’t have to be a Montessori family to reap the benefits! Not only are the toys amazing, the support you will receive both via the online tutorials and from their customer support will be unmatched. They want you to be successful and enjoy the journey with your little one! I am so appreciate of the chance to try out Monti Kids with Easton and I’m looking forward to the experiences it will continue to bring us. I know you will just love it too and Monti Kids has graciously agreed to give my readers $30 off their toys! Just use the code “BAKING30“ and the discount will be applied.
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