Today I’m going to talk about a couple of great Montessori activities at home for babies aged 3 to 6 months. I know a lot of you guys out there are just getting started on your Montessori journey. And a lot of you have little babies. And you do want to know how to do montessori activities at home for your babies. Since babies aren’t quite capable of doing practical life activities yet. A lot of you are wondering what do I do with my baby to begin their Montessori journey. That’s a great question now. Between the ages of 0 and 3 months, it’s actually pretty easy. But once babies hit that three-month mark, they really start to wake up and really pay attention to everything that’s going on around them. Everything that they’re taking in through their senses is a completely new experience for them. So as a parent, anything that you can do to capitalize on that is going to be a perfect Montessori activity for your baby.
As we’ve already mentioned, babies from ages 3 to 6 months are really starting to pay attention to everything that’s going on around them. This might include visual stimulation things that they can hear as well as things that they can touch with their hands, which bring me to another important point, they are also starting to work on their hand control at this age. They don’t quite have fine motor control yet where they’re really manipulating their fingers in a purposeful way. They have more of this whole hand raking grasp. But they are learning to reach out for things that they see in their environment that they find interesting. They’re batting at things. One day they finally reach that momentous occasion where they actually reach out for the thing that they were looking at and grab it. From there the world is their oyster. So the activities that I’m about to share with you, all provide very rich sensory experiences for your baby and also help them to develop their hand control.
1. Montessori At Home – High Contrast Cards
At the beginning of that 3 to 6 month range, you can still really take advantage of a lot of the activities that you might have been doing when they were in newborns, but maybe on a slightly different level. For example, infants are very interested in high contrast cards (Click here to view on amazon). There’s actually a set of 20 of them. You might have been hanging them up in places where your baby was very regularly, like the changing table. Now that they’re a little bit more active. You’re probably giving them more tummy time. And these cards make for a great tummy time experience. All you have to do is set them up right in front of your baby within their line of sight. Your baby may even try to start reaching for them if they’re close enough. And this provides something that they can really focus their attention on.
2. Montessori At Home – Gobbi Mobile
Now I’m not sure whether or not you’re familiar with the different Montessori Mobile (Click here to view on amazon). Or maybe you’re using them with your infant. One of them is called the Gobbi Mobile (Click here to view on amazon). And it’s actually the third in a series of mobiles that you present to your infant starting from birth. A Gobbi Mobile is great because not only does it provide a source of visual stimulation but if you hang it low enough then once your child start batting it, object can actually reach up and start batting at the little balls. So if you have a Gobbi Mobile for your baby then that’s another option that you can try as well.
3. Montessori At Home – Crinkly Taggi Blantket
Another simple and easy sensory experience for your baby – is to provide them with one of these crinkly taggi blankets (Click here to view on amazon). As you can see, it’s got different textures on either side of the blanket. And a series of differently textured ribbons are all the way around the whole thing. Obviously when your baby is holding it, it makes a really fun crinkly noise. If you’ve never seen one of those before, then you can find them all over Etsy. Just type in “crinkly taggi blanket” and they’ll pop right up in fact.
4. Montessori At Home – Wood & Silk Teether
Another favorite around our house is a wood and silk teether (Click here to view on Etsy). The wooden part of it is nice and chunky and big. It’s really easy for small hands to grab. The surface of the wood is very smooth, so babies can put it in their mouth and chew all over it without any kind of a danger. And the little silk blanket that’s tied around it provides a very different texture. So it’s kind of like two sensory experiences in one. But like I mentioned is one of My baby’s favorites. So we basically carry it around with us everywhere we go.
5. Montessori At Home – Treasure Basket
In a Montessori environment, especially with young babies, you’ll often find treasure baskets (Click here to view on amazon) which is basically just a basket filled with a selection of different items for your baby to explore. Sometimes they are categorized, for example, all kitchen utensils. Other times they can just be random selections of things. It’s kind of really up to you. So at 3 to 6 months, you can introduce your baby to their very first treasure basket. One of the easiest treasure baskets to make is just a basket filled with a variety of differently textured balls. During tummy time all you have to do is put the basket on the floor in front of your baby. Stand back and let your baby do the rest. Not only will your baby be delighted by all of the different textures on the balls, sometimes the basket also ends up being part of the experience as well. You’re also providing an opportunity for them to work on hand-eye coordination and their manual skills. Even better is, when they get a little bit older and they’re able to make contact with that ball and then bring it to their mouths for the ultimate sensory experience. Because we all know that babies explore their world by putting things in their mouths. You do want to pay attention to how many balls you’re providing to your baby at one time. The set usually comes with six different balls. But you don’t need to give them all to her at the same time. Usually I will only select two to three balls to place into the basket. In this way she doesn’t become overwhelmed with choices and then becomes frustrated, which kind of defeats the purpose of allowing her to have that independent playtime.
6. Montessori At Home – Single Sensory Ball
Something similar to a set of sensory balls is a single sensory ball (Click here to view on amazon). This one is actually soft like a stuffed animal. Each of the little wedges has a different texture. And some of them are even crinkly you can hear that as I’m holding it. This is one that you can certainly try during tummy time. Or even just when your baby’s awake laying on their back. On the earlier end of the three to six month range, I would say that this ball is something that you would want to introduce to your baby. Maybe it is a little large and it does have the tendency to roll away, which might be frustrating to a young child who is just now working on their ability to reach out and grab for things. But as your baby gets older and starts inching toward that six-month mark, they might become a little bit more proficient at handling the ball and holding on to it by themselves.
7. Montessori At Home – Bell Rattle
Another classic Montessori activity for babies is a Bell rattle (Click here to view on amazon). The one that I purchased is an oval shape, whereas typically I think you usually see them like a little cylinder shape so that they’re able to roll much more easily. And the idea is that, as they gets older they can then crawl after it. So what she’s able to do with it is use her fingers to grab on to all the little wooden dowels in the middle and basically just shake it like crazy. She’s really starting to learn about cause and effect. What happens when I grab onto this toy and move my arm, then I can tell that it’s very exciting for her. Because she gets very exuberant about her rattle shaking once she realizes what’s happening. As I mentioned, this toy is also very useful as the baby gets older. Because once they start crawling and it rolls away on the floor then they have something to crawl after. It provides that motivation so this is a toy that will grow with your baby.
8. Montessori At Home – Wooden Toy Set
Now this is a little set of some Montessori inspired wooden toys (Click here to view on Etsy). It comes with three of them, including a set of interlocking disks, grasping beads, a wooden baby rattle.The grasping beads obviously do what the name implies. It encourages your babies grasping skills. They also provide yet again another great teether for babies. The wooden baby rattle can be used before your child even discovers how to really use a rattle for its intended purpose. Because the little wooden dowel in the middle is just right for their hands so they can hold on to it. They can gnaw on the little ball on the end. Then as they become a little bit more experienced, they can learn how to shake it and make all the little wooden rings that are attached to it clink into each other. The last toy in this set, the interlocking discs are great as teether in the beginning just for your baby to hold on to. But they actually do have a purpose once your baby is a little bit older so again closer to the six-month. And the idea is that the discs are on a flat hard surface where your baby is spending some tummy time. As your child accidentally bumps into the discs, they roll away in this very interesting pattern and make it easy to crawl after. The interlocking discs are also the perfect shape for encouraging hand transfer skills in slightly older babies.
9. Montessori At Home – Hand Kite
Moreover, a super simple toy that you can actually make at home by yourself very easily is a hand kite (Click here to view on amazon). It’s just a little wooden ring with a series of colorful ribbons to it. Your baby will love to chew not only on the wooden ring but also on the ribbons as well. You just need to make sure that the ribbons are a hundred percent secured on there. I have it double knotted. And then at the other end I’ve actually burned them just a little bit so that they don’t become frayed. You also want to make sure that they’re not long enough that they can become a choking hazard. Just on the side of caution though, I would definitely make sure that this is a supervised toy with young babies.
10. Montessori At Home – A Mirror
If you have not yet introduced your 3 to 6 month old baby to a mirror (Click here to view on amazon), now is the time to do it. By three to six months they don’t recognize themselves in the mirror. Typically that skill does not develop until they’re about 18 months old. But at 3 to 6 months they still find it very fascinating to look at faces, especially faces that they feel are familiar and they see regularly. So that could be your face in the mirror if you’re looking with them. Or it could be their own face that they see on a regular basis which they very likely just think is another baby. So this’s really easy. Just put your baby in front of a mirror. Sit back and like we said earlier. Let your baby do the rest. Watch all of the different facial expressions that your baby starts making at him or herself. They sometimes make some really funny ones. A lot of parents feel most comfortable placing a mirror in a baby’s play area where they can be supervised. However, with the right safety considerations in place, you can also place a mirror in your baby’s bedroom. This way when they’re in there either before they sleep or when they wake up, they have access to this mirror. And they can begin to develop a visual map of their environment. Having a mirror load down where they can see it really helps to give them a view of all angles of the room that they might not otherwise have. I would highly suggest giving a mirror ago if you have not yet. You’ll probably be pleasantly surprised how long it keeps your baby entertained.
11. Montessori At Home – Grasping Ring
Another great activity is a grasping ring (Click here to view on Etsy) that is suspended above your baby by an elastic cord. You can hang this elastic cord straight from the ceiling or even from a baby activity gym. But the idea is that you hang it low enough that not only can your baby see it and focus on it but they can also begin batting at it, once they start doing that and then eventually grasping it. And once your baby discovers that the ring moves when they pull on it they can actually bring it to their mouth. Because it’s on an elastic cord, your baby is going to go wild with it. Not only is this one great for encouraging hand-eye coordinate but it’s really great for parents. As you have a built-in teether that is not going to roll away from your baby. Anytime your baby lets go it, Springs right back into its original position. It’s right there for your baby to grab again.
12. Montessori At Home – Go Outside
The next activity is something that I think a lot of parents just tend to forget about. That’s taking your baby outside. You certainly want to take precautions – putting sunscreen on if they’re going to be in direct sun; placing them in shade if at all possible; providing a safe clean location for them to hang out. But if you’re doing all of those things and there’s no reason not to take your baby outside. And I don’t necessarily mean in the stroller although that is an option as well. I mean simply spreading out a blanket in the grass and allowing your baby to lay on it. Allow them to look up at the clouds moving. Place them under a tree where they can see the leaves gently blowing in the breeze. Allow them to feel the Sun on their face for a short bit of time. They can feel the wind blowing through their hair, they can hear birds chirping. And baby’s skin especially their little toes are so sensitive, so pull the blanket back a little bit, allow them to put their feet in the grass, and feel what it feels like to have grass between their toes. If you’re feeling really adventurous then flip your baby over for tummy time, put them right at the edge of the blanket so that they can see and get up close and maybe even touch and feel the grass blades. If you’re worried about dirt and germs then wash your baby’s hands right after they do it. These are the kinds of rich sensory experiences that build your baby’s foundation for knowledge about what the world is like. I try to make a point of it to spend time outside with my girls every single day as long as the weather is permitting. Even then there are some Montessori folks who will tell you that there is no such thing as bad weather just bad clothing. Not to mention the benefits of just getting some fresh air, there’s so much research out there that shows that being outside has so many health benefits not just for children but for adults as well. So if you tried no other activities from this video, let the one that you do try be going outside with your babies.
13. Montessori At Home – Reading
I would be remiss if I did not mention one last activity. That is not just for Montessori babies. It’s for all babies. That is reading with your child. I often get asked when I should start reading with my baby. And the answer is now. Your baby is never too young to down and look at the pictures of a book. And here are the words that you’re saying to them. No a very small baby is not going to understand anything that you’re saying. But eventually they are going to start making those connections. It’s not always easy to identify when that moment of recognition happens. So if you start now, you’re going to catch it as early as possible. Reading doesn’t mean to be for an extended period of time. It can simply just be something that you incorporate into your everyday routine. Even if you’re only just reading one book at bedtime every single day, that’s better than nothing. Reading is tied to academic proficiency in school. And it does wonders for your child’s early language development. So the sooner that you’re able to start reading with your baby the more benefits they’re going to gain from it. If you want your child to have a love of reading, then it’s important that you start reading as soon as possible. As far as what types of books you want to read to and three to six month old baby, you certainly want to focus on things that are based in reality things with very clear high contrast pictures. That is easy for your baby to see. It does not have to be a full-on lengthy story. It could be something as simple as a picture book with one picture in one word on each page. I know that when my toddler was a baby, she very much enjoyed all of the baby touch and filled books. Because as they do start reaching out for things that they see. They are going to start reaching out and trying to touch the pictures that they see on the book. And if there is interesting things on the pages for them to touch it makes the experience even better. with that said though, if you want to read a full length story to your baby, especially if there are some books that maybe you had as a child that were favorites that you’ve been excited to share with your baby, then there is certainly nothing wrong with you doing that now. If you’re really trying to go for strict Montessori philosophies, then the one thing that I would shy away from showing to your baby are books that are not based in reality.
So that is it for my suggestions for Montessori activities for infants aged 3 to 6 month at home. Of course this is not an extensive list. There are lots of other things that you can do with your babies. So if you have any suggestions for some Montessori style activities that you’ve been doing with your three to six month old baby that you find are successful, please share them with us in the comments below.
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