Realities of a Montessori Floor Bed -- Montessori Baby Week 32

Augustus has been our first baby that has used a floor bed from birth. Nora and Henry both moved to floor beds as toddlers -- Henry at 2-years-old and Nora around 14-months. But, before that they slept in a traditional crib in their own rooms. So, moving to a floor bed has been a big change, but actually quite a pleasant one! 

Using a Montessori floor bed for your baby from birth is very different from a crib. Here are some of the realities of using a floor bed from birth.

Before I go on, I wanted to make it clear that I am in NO way a sleep expert or anything. Sleep can be an intensely dividing issue and I'm here only to share our experience. Everyone will take different safety measures in their homes and should take their own comfort levels into consideration when making sleep decisions. This is simply what is working for us at this time. 

Gus started using his floor bed for daytime naps around 7 weeks old. Then, around 3-months, I put Gus down on his floor bed for what I thought would be a late evening nap and he ended up sleeping for six hours. We tried again the next night, and same result, so we made the switch. Augustus is just a light sleeper, so I think we were waking him at night in his bassinet. He in no way sleeps through the night now, just to be clear. 

Using a floor bed, has been a really interesting change! And, I wanted to address a couple of them! 

Ease of Use

One huge difference has been the ease of putting the baby to bed. There's no giant crib to try to lay the baby into or grab the baby out of. It's been SO much easier to lay Gus down without waking him up. It's also easier if I need to sit with him and rub his belly/back (we lay him on his back to sleep but he now rolls to his belly to sleep some of the time) if he is having trouble sleeping or doesn't want to be away from me. 

Calmer

Another huge difference is how much calmer Augustus is when waking up. This could be his personality but I think the floor bed has helped a lot. Gus doesn't usually cry upon waking! My other two always screamed and cried as they woke up. Now, Gus will whine/complain at night if he wants to be fed, or if a noise wakes him from a nap early, but if he's done sleeping, he's much more likely to just look around calmly. Now, that he moves, he is also likely to just get out of bed and explore. 

Using a Montessori floor bed for your baby from birth is very different from a crib. Here are some of the realities of using a floor bed from birth.

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Freedom of Movement

Finally, movement! This is the really really big change! Gus is free to get out of bed as he pleases! It's been really exciting to watch him learn how to slither out of bed and roll around his room. He honestly doesn't fall out of bed, but very consciously moves his body to the floor. Even when he was first learning to roll on the floor, he never rolled wildly out of bed. It was a slow and cautious adventure! The first time it happened, we had no idea until Morgan walked in to get him in the morning and he was next to his bed, not in it! 

Using a Montessori floor bed for your baby from birth is very different from a crib. Here are some of the realities of using a floor bed from birth.

The big question that most people have now is -- doesn't he get out of bed at night? And the answer is, sometimes! Sometimes he has gotten out of bed, and we hear him playing around his room {mostly because his helmet is loud when he rolls.} And, when that happens, we let him explore until he starts to sound like he needs some adult help. A few times I've watched him on our Nest Cam, roll around, explore and then make his way back to bed. He can't quite crawl back into bed yet, so it was at this point he started fussing to nurse/get help. Other times, he's much faster to get out of bed and start to fuss for me. And, then there are times he wants to eat at night and stays in bed completely.

The thing I love is that it is his choice. If he needs to play, I would rather he get that need out and then have me come in when he's really ready to sleep. Or, even fall asleep again on his own! The floor bed really gives him those opportunities. 

Using a Montessori floor bed for your baby from birth is very different from a crib. Here are some of the realities of using a floor bed from birth.

You can find some of the ways we have made the environment safe for all this unsupervised exploration! 

Do you use a floor bed? What has your experience been like? 


Comments

  1. I'd love to hear more about what a typical night is like. I'm familiar with the main ideas of Montessori from birth because I read lots before my son was born. But now that he's here, there is a whole new set of questions!
    Now I look to blogs to hear more about real life experience with Montessori. At risk of too much exposure to criticism, I'd personally love to hear more about how you navigate night nursing, wakings, etc.

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  2. I'd love to hear about your experiences transitioning your toddlers from the crib to the floor bed. I've been considering this for our 16 month old but am just not sure how to go about it.

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  3. I did the same at 20th months old. Just proposing both beds in the room and ask the baby to choose where he want to sleep. The choice was clearly floor bed, so after 2 weeks i unbuilt the crib.

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