by Cheryl Allen
Gifts should be a joy to give and receive, yet sometimes they can cause us stress. In Montessori, we consider how any item will help the child build themselves into the adult they are meant to be. To invite Montessori into your home and family, consider toys that encourage the child to think creatively and independently; toys that will last longer than the box; and realize that fewer toys that meet these criteria may be more engaging than an over-abundance of toys. We are sharing some ideas for all budgets, mostly from smaller sites, which work for a variety of ages and interests to get you started.
Here are some examples of some Montessori-inspired gifts. The Montessori Foundation is in no way affiliated with any of these companies or products. We just like them. If you are interested in a product, the QR-code or the tiny-URLs will help you find it. You will probably find other companies that offer the same product at more or less cost. You may also find some products that are sold out, you know, because of Covid and shipping delays. Sigh!
A magnifier to examine nature
Draw portraits of all your friends
Great watercolor paper
Build your own night light
Image is Sound-Activated tinyurl.com/5br2uxz4
Explore with watercolors.
Fold to make members of the animal kingdom. ecokidsusa.com/paper-magic
Puzzle out the work of gears.
Toddler step stool
Work together in the kitchen. tinyurl.com/473ubkpr
Learn to tie-dye
A variety of patterns to learn. tinyurl.com/j4y5mw5m
See the roots grow
Create a catapult
Color with rock-shaped crayons
Found It! Hunt for items in nature
Read about inventors
A quarterly magazine. tinyurl.com/6hynfuxb
Spread kindness with tissue paper flowers
Random Acts Of Kindness Kits
With 26 cards in each. tinyurl.com/4nnv38bp
Sensory Playdough and Sand Kits
A great screen free distraction. tinyurl.com/335fwra4
Measure days with a calendar
Nurture creativity. tinyurl.com/vjjmu5ea
Keep treasures after building a safe
Virtually “Adopt” a creature in need
World Wildlife Fund
Play the spoons.
A fun find for newbies and professional musicians alike. tinyurl.com/mf2z4x8s
Cook from around the world.
Cheryl Allen is the Associate Coordinator of the Montessori Foundation Family Network and is also a parenting educator and a Montessori consultant with the Montessori Foundation. After some time as a traditional secondary teacher, she worked in Montessori classrooms, earning certifications from both AMS (3-6 and 6-9) and IMC (6-12). She is a teacher educator, workshop presenter, and member of IMC accreditation teams.