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Montessori Friendly Play - A Visual Timeline 3 to 6 Months

Today, I’m continuing my Montessori friendly play visual timeline project with months 3 to 6. 


In this timeline, you can see there is a slight shift away from visual development to the development of the hand. It’s during their period that most babies will start to grasp, mouth, move, and explore more in their environment. 

Remember, this is just one possible way to introduce Montessori materials to your baby. You do not need everything on this list, and your baby might not enjoy everything on these lists at the exact time listed. These are approximate and will change slightly based on each individual child! Use this as a guide and not a strict schedule.

This is also not meant to include EVERYTHING a baby could use at this time. It gives you a general idea of the types of things a baby might enjoy at this time, but not necessarily a comprehensive list of everything available. 

This post contains affiliate links at no cost to you. 

Here's a look at Montessori friendly play from 3 to 6 months! 

A visual timeline for Montessori friendly play from 3 months to 6 months, including resources for using materials

3 Months to 4 Months

Books 

It is important and fun to read to babies from birth. At this age, babies can enjoy a variety of books but especially love those with real pictures. 

Examples: Smile Book | Baby with books | Book circle idea

For more information: Reading to your Baby from Birth

Bell Rattle / Grasping Beads 

The bell rattle and grasping beads are both traditional Montessori baby materials perfect for those early days of grasping and exploring. The bell rattle helps a baby start to associate movement with a reaction (the sound). 


For more information: The Montessori Bell Rattle 

Grasping Ring Mobiles / Wooden Bell Mobile 

The ring and bell mobiles are both mobiles that are meant to be grabbed, pulled and moved. These tactile mobiles are just another step in learning to grasp and working to understand cause and effect. 


For more information: Tactile Mobiles

Butterfly Mobile / Complex Visual Mobiles

The butterfly mobile is the last in the traditional Montessori visual mobile series for visual development. However, other more complex images are also often used at this time for babies including birds, whales, and balloons.


Puzzle Ball 

The puzzle ball is unique because it can be used as an actual ball or as a tactile mobile. A bell can also be sewn on for an additional sensory experience. 


For more information: Montessori Puzzle Ball 

Perfect Pacifier Ball

Sometimes this is introduced much earlier as the "perfect pacifier" but I prefer to use it once a baby can grab on his/her own. It has a lot of points to grab at, and can move, but doesn't roll away from a stationary baby.  


For more information: Overview found here

4-months-old 

Ribbon Mobile

This is a simple way to introduce texture to a baby, super fun as they are starting to move away from the visual mobiles and want something more interactive. 


For more information: DIY Ribbon Mobile

Interlocking Disks 

The interlocking disks are the first Montessori "ball." It's the perfect toy for hand-to-hand transfer and rolls just slightly encouraging early rolling and wiggling. 


For more information: Montessori Interlocking Disks

Glitter Drum 

The glitter drum is a great way for babies to expand their visual development, and to work with cause and effect. As they touch the drum, it spins with a variety of colors and makes a soft rattling sound. 

For more information:

A visual timeline for Montessori friendly play from 3 months to 6 months, including resources for using materials

Calmies Rubber Ball / Early Mouthing Toys

At this point, babies often become more interested in chewing and mouthing toys. Early teethers are helpful here, this one, in particular, is nice because it's easy to grasp, safe to chew and doesn't roll too far. A traditional wooden Montessori rattle (which could also be introduced with the bell rattle) can also serve a similar purpose. 


Bell Cylinder 

A bell cylinder is great for a baby that is starting to move a little more and still super easy to pick up. Its a nice step up from the interlocking disk since it will roll just a bit, but still makes a great sound and interest for babies that are grasping only. 


For more information: Bell Cylinder Review

Skwish 

The Skwish is a popular Montessori friendly option for early grasping for a couple of reasons. It's larger in scale and has a lot of areas where a child can grab on to. It makes a very pleasing sound, and moves in really interesting ways. Again, a great toy for perfecting that grasping, hand to hand transfer, reaching, and rolling that most babies are working on at this time. 


For more information: Exploring ToysSkwish toy review

5-months-old 

Winkle 

The winkle is very similar to the skwish in that it helps with grasping, hand to hand transfers and early reaching and moving (since it doesn’t really roll). It also adds a chewy texture that is great for teething. Without the balls of the skwish, it does require slightly more accurate grasp, but it’s your call if you want/need both. 


Balls 

There are so many options when it comes to balls. These are great to introduce in a variety of ways since they encourage movement. As your baby starts to roll, scoot, crawl, they are perfect to encourage rolling, scooting, and crawling. I love fabric balls to start since they are easy to grasp and don't roll too far. But, the possibilities are endless. 


For more information: A Treasure Basket of Balls 

Teethers 

As your baby begins to teeth, it is nice to have a few Montessori friendly teethers available. All of toys listed in this timeline will be explored with a child's mouth, but having a couple that are made from chewy/teether material can be really soothing. Here, just choose materials that are safe to mouth in a variety of sizes and shapes. 


For more information: Teething

Stick Rattles / Different Rattle Shapes 

As babies get older and better at grasping providing a couple of rattles in different shapes will keep your baby engaged and working on grasping skills, cause and effect (it makes a noise when I move it), and movement skills.  


For more information: Montessori friendly toys at 6 Months | Mainstream Baby Toys for Montessori homes

As you can see, playtime between 3 to 6 month is all about starting to move and explore! Its learning to move the hand, feet, and body! It's simple toys that engage a child in purposeful movement and exploration. Next time, I'll back to explore ages 6 to 9 months!


Did your 3 to 6 month old enjoy any of these types of toys? 
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