Maria Montessori was an influential early years educationalist, born in Italy in 1870. While Montessori was working with special needs children it sparked an interest in education and led to her setting up schools for disadvantaged children. The Montessori approach focuses on the planes of development, the theory that children have the greatest capacity to learn in the first 6 years of their lives. This development is achieved with a hands-on, independent approach from the children.
In a Montessori classroom, tasks are set up and the children can engage with the activities they are drawn to. Although there is freedom of choice, the classroom will still be structured and prepared, with a range of materials the teacher wants the children to experience. In order to fully absorb activities and learn from them children should be given uninterrupted periods of time to allow enjoyment.
The Montessori approach encourages the children to become independent learners. The idea is when children are given the freedom to choose activities; they develop into willing learners that can be confident in decision making.
With a wide selection of toys available, it is easy to bring these Montessori approaches into your child’s play time. By selecting the most suitable toys for age range, they aid developing key skills. An important theme in the Montessori approach is learning through experience - Children learn best when doing. By introducing stimulating toys that rely on problem solving and task completion it allows full participation. Our Petilou toys have sensory layers of colours, sounds, textures and discovery that foster curiosity and encourage early learning through play. By offering stimulating toys and activities this can refine their senses, encourage creativity and problem solving skills. Petilou toys all carry elements of the natural world into their design; this is a way to connect your child with the outdoors in a positive play environment.
Typically, Montessori toys are made from natural materials as they connect the toys to nature and are generally safer to mouth. A Le Toy Van toy is powered by make believe and not polluting batteries; made from sustainable Rubberwood and decorated with non-toxic water based paints to ensure our toys are safe to your children and kind to the environment.
By having realistic playthings, it teaches infants about the world around us and allows children to develop their own imagination. Montessori observed that children love to participate in practical life and daily routine elements; by introducing job-like activities it brings a sense of purpose and allows the child to feel competent. Our Honeybake role play toys are packed with layers of discovery for young growing imaginations. Designed in a traditional, realistic style, the collection encourages creative social play and allows children’s imagination to do the legwork.