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Thursday, March 24, 2022

Montessori Toddler Toys at 30 Months

It's been a little bit of time since I've shared the materials that Teddy is using on his Montessori work shelves. At 2.5-years-old, his main focus throughout the day is still practical life and gross motor development. More than any of my other children, Teddy is far less interested in toys and shelf work. He is much more likely to be running around with a truck than spending much time on puzzles. Yet, some parts of his day still do include working with his things. 


I trust that he is getting what he needs out of whatever activity he is choosing, but I am also making decisions about what to include on the shelves based on my observations of his activity. This time I decided to break the materials into categories based on how he interacts with each material. 

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Montessori Toddler Familiar Favorites at 30 Months


These are the materials on Teddy's shelves that he has used before or for a long time. You can even seen some of these in my last update on Teddy's shelves. These are mostly open ended materials that are comforting for him and still provide a lot of interest. I think when creating a shelf, there will almost always be a few things that the child has complete mastery of but that they return to time and time again. 

Basket of Cars: random collection of cars that we have collected over the years
Playmobil 123 Trucks: perfect trucks for toddlers
Plan Toys Car Track: I love that these are fun, are decent fine motor work, and work on visual scanning
Spoolz: stacking and size discrimination, also really fun to roll and spin 

Montessori Toddler "Just Right" Toy Favorites 


These are the toys and materials that hit that sweet spot for Teddy right now. They keep his interest, work expand his current skills but are something he can do without assistance. These just right materials make up the bulk of Ted's shelves. I always aim to find those materials that he is ready for just in this moment. Some of our materials are no longer made, or were thrift finds so I have linked similar toys. 
Counting Rings: These are not new to Ted but using them now to introduce counting
Stacking Pegs: Used for sorting by color and building 
Frame Puzzle: Just a wonderful material but I cannot find in the U.S. I'm told these are still available in Europe so I'm hoping that once supply chain issues are worked out we will see these again.  
Lacing Beads (similar): We have a few varieties of these and he's just about ready for a smaller bead
Nesting Cylinders (similar): I love that these get taller as they get more narrow. Again good for sorting by color and size. 
Grapat LOLA (holder purchased from this shop): Size sorting, loose parts play, and fine motor work
Whale Layer Puzzle: fun way to explore size and nice fine motor

Montessori Toddler Toys that Provide a Challenge


These are materials that stretch Ted's current abilities but just enough to provide some challenge but not a horrible amount of frustration. I want him to be challenged but also capable of success with the toy. The exact materials that provide a challenge really will depend on each child and their unique abilities and interests.
Nesting Doll (similar): These are wonderful size discrimination work plus sometimes some pretend play
Hape Twist: Great problem solving and wrist rotation
Vintage Picture Puzzle (options here or options here): I love these before jigsaw puzzles because they don't require as much fine motor skill but let them put together larger pictures
Mom and Baby Jigsaw: 3 piece jigsaw that provides a nice introduction to jigsaws with a bit more fine motor skill
Squeezing clips: Ted can clip these to the end of the tray they are stored in. They are perfect for increasing hand strength 

This post does not include the art, or practical life activities that Ted spends time on each day as well. I will try to update about those soon. As always remember that each child is unique and may have different interests and abilities at this age. 

Favorite toys and materials on our Montessori play shelves at 2.5-years-old.



What is your 2.5-year-old into? 
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Mallory said...

Thank you for these great ideas!