Skip to main content

4 Reasons I Love the Topponcino

Have you ever heard of the topponcino? I know that a few years ago, I hadn't! The topponcino is a small mattress used to help transition a baby from womb into the world. The baby uses the topponcino when he/she is being held, or placed somewhere for the first few weeks of the baby's life. It becomes the baby's first environment, one that can move with the baby from place to place. A mom sleeps with the topponcino before the baby arrives so that it smells like her and provides a secure and comforting feeling to the baby. 

4 reasons I loved using a topponcino with my Montessori baby

The topponcino itself is firm but flexible and soft. It feels as if you took a stiff quilt and folded it several times. It's typically oval and not particularly thick. Since I hadn't heard of them with Henry and Nora, I only used one with Augustus. And, I have to say if we ever have more children, the topponcino goes on my must-have list. It was fantastic, and I so wish I had one for my older kids too. Here are a few reasons I LOVED the topponcino! 

Holding the baby 

The topponcino makes it easier so much easier to hold the baby. This was especially true when Gus was little and floppy and I was recovering from his birth. It helped to distribute the weight and provide just enough support to make it so much easier. Now, this isn't to say that it was a replacement for skin-to-skin time, just that in those moments that I needed a bit of help. Also, for older relatives, it was amazing. My mother, grandmothers, and others all loved having that extra bit of sunggly support. 


4 reasons I loved using a topponcino with my Montessori baby

Sibling Bonding 

The topponcino was awesome for sibling bonding! It helped Henry and Nora to be able to independently hold Gus without a lot of fuss from us. It also helped provide a defined space where the other children knew to stay back from so that Gus got the space he needed to stay safe in those early days. 

4 reasons I loved using a topponcino with my Montessori baby

This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you. 

Putting the Baby Down

The topponcino is also awesome because when your baby falls asleep and you put your baby down, the surface doesn't change and the baby often keeps on sleeping! Same when you pick the baby up! Being the third baby, Gus often would fall asleep on the topponcino in a random place (like the kitchen floor) as I helped Nora/Henry with something. Then I could easily pick him up, and place him in a safer, long-term sleeping area and he wouldn't bat an eye. 

4 reasons I loved using a topponcino with my Montessori baby

Unfamiliar Places and People

The topponcino made for some awesomely calm doctor appointments, family gatherings and other venues where Gus had to be passed around. His little environment stayed familiar. He was comfortable, protected against whatever was on everyone's clothes, and peacefully transferred from one person to another. It was always a familiar reference point for him and made these types of situations peaceful for him. 

For these reasons, the topponcino is at the top of my Montessori baby must-have list. My topponcino was made and borrowed from my dear friend Amy. If you want to make one, you can find several tutorials online {here for example.} However, if you aren't as crafty they can also be purchased on Etsy {here and here, for example.} and some other Montessori shops.

Have you used a topponcino? What did you like about it?! 

---

Comments

Nora said…
We are expecting a second baby and I definitely plan to make one of these. Loved reading this, especially about transferring while sleeping!!!

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…

Sensitive Periods from Birth to 6 - A Chart and Guide

Dr. Maria Montessori spent her life observing, studying, and writing about children. During her lifetime of work she discovered that young children move through a series of special times when they are particularly attracted to specific developmental needs and interests. She called these times, sensitive periods. During the sensitive period, children learn skills related to the sensitive period with ease. They don't tire of that work, but seek it, crave it and need it. When the sensitive period passes, this intense desire is gone, never to return. 

That doesn't mean the skill is lost forever once the sensitive period is over. Instead, it just means that it will take a more conscious effort to learn. As Dr. Montessori explains, 
This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you.
"A child learns to adjust himself and make acquisitions in his sensitive periods. These are like a beam that lights interiorly a battery that furnishes energy. It is this sensibility which enables a…

Working from Home with Kids - A Montessori Schedule

One part of my life that I haven't talked a ton about here on The Kavanaugh Report is how I'm a work-from-home parent. Eight years ago I started to work at home while parenting full time. For the first several years, I worked as a legal writer while maintaining this space on the side. When Gus was born, I moved into working on sharing our Montessori life full time. It has blossomed into a full time career sharing content here, teaching courses, and now the podcast! Through it all, my kids have been home with me. 
This all seems more relevant to so many of us now that Covid-19 has closed schools and forced parents to stay at home and work while caring for children. I'm not going to lie - it's tough. It's hard to balance work and kids, especially when children are used to a completely different routine. But, it's not impossible! And, it can even be enjoyable. 

As I talk about in my podcast Shelf Help, we block our days into 3 hours groups. It helps me remain fle…