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May 07, 2020

Toys to Support Early Crawling

I've mentioned this before, but Theodore is on the verge of crawling. In an effort to support that desire to crawl, over the last couple of months I've made sure that at least some of his toys have supported this need for movement. While a lot of toys support a need for movement, I want to make sure I'm offering only those that support right where he is in this moment. If something is too easy, it won't engage him. If something is too challenging he could become too frustrated and give up. We want to find that balance of just the right material to support exactly where he's at. 

I ask a few questions before deciding on the right toy to introduce at this age. Answering these questions will help me decide whether or not Teddy is ready for a toy or if I need to wait until he can move a little more efficiently. They include: 

  • how big is the toy? 
  • how heavy is the toy? 
  • how easy is it to roll? 
  • how far will it roll away at one time? 




Here are some examples of Montessori baby toys that support early movement, especially crawling. These toys help babies learn to move.
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So this is the order that I have used with Teddy. I'll answer these questions to help give you an idea of why I went with this order. 

Bell Rattle

First up is the bell rattle {similar}. I introduce this one first because it is easy to grasp and light weight. It makes a fun sound to shake, but as it is dropped, it rolls away slightly and slowly. It's perfect for those early rolling days when baby's can't go very far at one time. The bell makes it attractive even when they are just shaking and grasping it. 

Ball Roller 

Next up is the ball roller, it is larger and not as attractive to just shake. Instead, it's fun to chase! They make a fun noise when rolled but doesn't move too far away when pushed. It is great to encourage those first movements forward without rolling half way across the room with a slight touch. 

Soft Ball

Third choice is a soft ball {similar}. I like this ball at this phase for a couple reasons. One, it's super easy to grasp and mouth. Teddy is still mostly interested in just exploring everything with his mouth. A soft ball is great for that. But, also when dropped, rolled, or thrown, it doesn't go that far. It makes it just enough of a movement challenge that a new mover can feel a lot of success being able to go after it. And being easy to grab, they can also explore picking up with their feet, with one hand, or with their mouth! 

OBall

My fourth choice for Teddy was an OBall. I love this as a choice for two reasons. One, it's easy to grasp and super light weight. It rolls much more easily and further than the soft ball. But the holes do slow it down and it stops fairly quickly and stays put. By staying in place just a bit more than traditional smooth balls, it is easier to chase and grasp. 

Bumpy Ball

Finally, I've introduced a bumpy sensory ball. This ball is fairly small so that Teddy can pick it up easily. It's also very light. But, the bumps do slow it down more than a smoother ball. The bumps keep it from rolling allll the way across a room but it does roll much further than the oball. 

Eventually, I'll introduce other balls that roll even further and smoother than those listed here. Again, it's about giving him opportunities to be successful and feel that confidence from being able to move the way that he hopes. 

Here are some examples of Montessori baby toys that support early movement, especially crawling. These toys help babies learn to move.


What toys have you introduced to support early crawling? 

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