Skip to main content

Montessori Toddler Classification Cards with Printable

Nora is getting to the age where she is starting to be ready for matching work. She is starting to make connections about the world around her. We've dabbled with matching work before, but she wasn't quite ready. Now, as she really enters the sensitive period for order, I've noticed a real interest and Montessori toddler classification cards are a great place to start. She's also picking up words left and right as she expands her vocabulary. 

Pre-matching Montessori work for toddlers. These classification cards help toddlers start to identify objects and classify them into groups.

This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you.

In the Montessori approach, classification cards are used as the first step in the matching series for toddlers. These cards have only pictures on them of related groups of objects. This is pre-matching work so these cards have no matches and no words. They are simply used to introduce the objects to toddlers giving them the exact vocabulary for the items. It introduces the concept of categories and that things go together. 

Pre-matching Montessori work for toddlers. These classification cards help toddlers start to identify objects and classify them into groups.

These cards are really simple to make! Just print out the printable I created. There are three different sets -- clothes, kitchen, and bathroom. Each set contains five to seven images. You can cut out and paste each set on to different colored card stock so that they are self-correcting should the cards get mixed together. Then, laminate for durability. Then, place each set in it's own basket or tray. You can also make your own by using any set of related images. 



To use these cards, each set is presented on its own to the child. I used a mat to present to Nora, but you don't have to, any surface is fine! To present the cards, I do a 2-part lesson. First I take each card slowly out of the basket and then say its name. With toddlers, I'm careful not to talk and move at the same time. Then, just place on the mat

Once all of the cards are placed down. You can go on to the second part of the lesson. Which asks the toddler to recall the names of each card. So, you may ask "Nora, where is the fork?" If your child is verbal {Nora at 19 months is not,} then you can hold up a card and ask "what's this?" This can be repeated as often as your child chooses the work! 


Pre-matching Montessori work for toddlers. These classification cards help toddlers start to identify objects and classify them into groups.

These cards can be used to introduce toddlers to new concepts until they are 3-years-old. Adding more cards can increase the challenge for older toddlers. Stay tuned for the next step in the matching process!

Have you introduced language or matching materials to your toddler? 


Comments

Pamela Green said…
Thank you, Nicole, for creating and sharing these. You continue to be an inspiring and supportive resource for families and Montessorians, and the child.
Unknown said…
Thank you ! Great explanation ! We have been doing the category of animals and DD loves them @ 19 months . We did the three period lesson and have now proceeded to matching with animal models. I follow howwemontessori and you closely :)
Anel Winney said…
Thanks for the printable! Do you laminate a few at a time in one purple sheet, then cut? Or cut and then laminate each individual one?

Popular Posts

The Ultimate Montessori Toy List -- Birth to Five -- UPDATED 2019

When you are interested in Montessori, it can be difficult to know exactly what types of products you should get for your home. Or which types of "Montessori" materials are really worth the price. There are no rules about types of products can use the name Montessori which can add to the confusion. Not to mention, every toy manufacturer slaps the word "educational" on the package for good measure!

2019 UPDATE: This post has been updated to include a variety of brands and new product finds! Just a reminder that no one child will be interested in all of this or needs all of this. These toys are just here to spark ideas and give you a feeling for some Montessori-friendly options available! 


So, with this post, I'm going to try to help with this confusion! Here's a list of Montessori-friendly toys and materials for babies, toddlers and preschoolers. 


First, let's clarify that there is no such thing as a "Montessori toy." Montessori never created to…

Which Open-Ended Toys are "Worth it?"

As a Montessori parent, I try to provide a mix of materials in our home to engage my kids! That work that will spark joy, concentration, and repetition. It's not always an easy task, as Maria Montessori said, "Life is mysterious...only the choice of life can choose the work that the child truly needs. Therefore, the teacher respects this mysterious process and knows to wait with faith." So, there does sometimes feel like there is a bit of trial and error when it comes to choosing materials that your children need. 

For us, the right balance is easier to find when I spend time deeply observing my children. Watching their interests, sitting on my hands if I have to, letting them struggle a little with things, and letting them get bored. And what I have personally found is that here at home, a combination of open ended materials and more structured work have been the right balance. Open ended toys wouldn't necessarily be found in a Montessori classroom, but they are perf…

A Montessori Approach to Purging Your Toys

Becoming a Montessori family has been life changing in so many ways, most obviously with the amount and type of materials we use in our home. Once you see why having so many toys is a problem, or when you make the decision to move towards Montessori, it can be completely overwhelming. But, taking a Montessori approach to purging your toys is possible! And, it doesn't exactly mean that you have to throw away everything you have and start over with only expensive wooden toys. It will mean taking a hard look at what you have and whether it really fits with Montessori.


One note, however, Montessori is at its core about following your child's own path and respecting your child as a whole person. So, if your child has a toy, lovey, book, or whatever that your child super loves or is super attached to, but it doesn't fit Montessori ideals, don't take it away. Follow your child, that is more Montessori than whether or not you own some specific consumer product. 
How to Purge You…