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Creating a Space for Play -- Montessori Baby Week 24

I am officially in unfamiliar parenting territory, friends! I have a non-mobile baby past the age of 5-months. I have a baby that is interested in the world around him, but unable to get exactly where he wants to go. Using a treasure basket or shelf isn't a super effective way for a baby like this to get materials. And, you don't want to have to hand them everything. So, what do you do when you have a non-mobile older baby? How do you create a space for play in a Montessori way? 

Creating a Montessori baby play space for a non-moving baby. Setting things around the floor can help to encourage movement and the free exploration of materials.

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Augustus is nearing 6 months old and doesn't sit, crawl, or scoot. He does roll both ways but slowly and less effectively than Nora or Henry ever did. Henry and Nora were both very quick gross motor movers and by this age both moved very efficiently. Henry was even crawling. Gus is, however, on his own path -- which we are happy to follow.

But, it does mean that we have to make some modifications. We can't yet rely on him moving to a shelf to pick work for himself. So, what do we do? We create a play space! This can be done in your movement area, or in another space on a large blanket. We do it both ways. Here we are in our living room, because that's where we were hanging out.

Also we tend to make this sort of play space more in the living room, since the shelves are so close by in the movement area. In that case, I choose a few things from the shelf and offer them to Gus or place them around the room in front of him. Then, we restore as he finishes. This gets him in the routine -- from birth -- that we choose and restore from the shelf. 

These materials are also restored to the shelf -- the one by the fireplace in the background -- but they are too hard for him to feasibly access at this point. So, we choose and use the floor. 

Creating a Montessori baby play space for a non-moving baby. Setting things around the floor can help to encourage movement and the free exploration of materials.

To create this space, I simply choose a small variety -- no more than 5 -- of things I think he would enjoy exploring. Then, I place them around the blanket in a pleasing, yet accessible way. I don't want anything too far, or too close. I also try to choose a variety of materials that I think would suit him at this time. 

This time, I choose a DIY rainbow ribbon tactile mobile on our play gym, the glitter drum (his favorite right now), an O-Ball, and a small soft book. 

Then, we place Gus in the center of it all. That allows him to roll around and explore the materials as he is attracted to them. This also helps to encourage movement as he sees something he would like and works to get to it. 

Creating a Montessori baby play space for a non-moving baby. Setting things around the floor can help to encourage movement and the free exploration of materials.

Have you created a baby play space? How have you helped your non-mobile baby access materials?



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