Montessori Child Development Stages: Age 1-2 Years+

This page is being used in Montessori teacher training courses at all levels, and by schools to help parents discover the amazing potential of the young child, or to prepare families for future Montessori education. Please feel free to link it to any educational site and to share it. Toys and materials that support this development: montessori shop

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This site really is fantastic, I am going to mail it to everyone. Thank you!
—Heidi Philippart, 0-3 Montessori teacher& school administrator, Amsterdam
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The first essential for the child's development is concentration.
The child who concentrates is immensely happy.

— Maria Montessori, MD

NOTE: When you click on a video you will be taken to www.youtube.com. When a video is completed other suggestions are made that we do not recommend unless they are our "Montessori Infant Videos".


Toys found in the kitchen
Link: Mixing bowls—among a child's favorite toys: VIDEO
More favorite toys found in the home
Link: more favorite toys found in the home: VIDEO

Many of the things a child needs to play with in order to develop can be found in the home, like these bowls placed on a low shelf that the child can get out at any time (and eventually learn to put back). It is important to provide CLEAN and SAFE space in the kitchen. Be sure that the child cannot get into drawers or cupboards that are not safe! 12 months.

TRY TO AVOID INTERUPTING CONCENTRATION WHENEVER POSSIBLE! The inspiration to experiment, to concentrate, to use one hands and mind together working on the solving of a problem or mastering an activity, these lead to happiness and joy. Simple household items, if completely safe, can do just as well as any commercial toys. 12 months.


first walking alone

Link: First walking alone - with great joy and excitement: VIDEO

Walking on the Line
Link: walking on the line, important at any age: VIDEO

The thrill of walking alone is unmatched in the development of the child. After months of pulling up, cruising sidewise while holding on to a bar or stool, "working" with toys on a low shelf while holding on with one hand, and practicing walking while holding on to the first walker wagon, finally the child can do it alone! 13 months.

First a child learns to walk, then he begins to run everywhere. It is invalidating to keep telling a child "Don't run!," but providing a challenge of putting one foot in front of the other on a "line" seems to be an inborn tendency. It provides practice in balance, focus, and self-control, and is so much fun! 17 months.


Handwashing Lesson
Link: First handwashing lesson in a Montessori Infant Community: VIDEO
Learning to put on socks and slippers

Link: Lesson on taking off and putting on socks and slippers: VIDEO

Link: source of children's favorite first shoes: SHOES

Every unnecessary help is a hindrance to the child's development. From the very beginning of life we watch for what a child can do, WANTS to do, for himself. Then we analyze the steps and teach him a bit at a time, following his interest. This is a teacher in a Montessori IC giving the first lesson on handwashing. 14 months.

From early days children want to do what they see others do. Here the lesson is how to put on socks. But the child has other ideas. He wants to put "first shoes" or slippers on instead, and the specially trained teacher, or Assistant to Infancy, and his mother, are in touch with him enough to know just what he wants. He is so pleased to be understood. 14 months.


kitchen drum lesson
Link: a drum lesson on those favorite kitchen toys: VIDEO
kitchen drum solo

Link: and now he moves on to a drum solo: VIDEO

Link: 3 pages of music, drums and percussion instruments for this age: MUSIC

Music is important to humans all throughout life. Wouldn't it be grand if each of us sang and danced and played music often? A child should learn that music comes from the movement of a human body, not from a CD player. In this video you will see how a period of "kitchen object" play turned into a drum lesson when the child was joined by his Afro-Cuban musician uncle. 12 months

It is very clear that this young person has taken in and thoroughly enjoyed his "kitchen object" drum lessons. Now he is ready to solo! 12 months.


Book Learning

Link: Learning words and to turn pages: VIDEO

Link: source of books for this age: BOOKS

Matching objects to pictures

Link: Matching familiar objects to pictures: VIDEO

Link: source of vocabulary cared for this age: CARDS

Link: book display similar to the one in the background of this picture: BOOKSTAND

Notice that this child repeats the ending words of the sentences read by his grandfather. This is a common stage in learning language. He is also learning to turn pages, and at the end of the book he says 'gen! which means "again" because children need repetition and will listen to the same book over and over until they have absorbed what they need from each reading. 17 months.

First children learn the names of real objects in the home, especially important are those they encounter every day such as vegetables and fruit. Then, on the way to learning from pictures alone, we give them objects to match to the pictures. 17 months.


shape sorting box

Link: solving the shape-sorting box puzzle: VIDEO

Link: source of this toy: SHAPE SORTING CUBE

putting away

Link: the bag that comes with the shape sorting cube: VIDEO

When a child is growing up in an environment where his attempts to move, touch, explore, concentrate, are respected and not interrupted, he develops self-control and patience. This child is observing carefully, thinking, and trying to solve the puzzle, with no hint of frustration. 17 months.

One never knows what part of a child's play or "work" will excite his interest, but it is always interesting at this age for a child to put items in a bag, or a box, or any container, and take the out again. 17 months.


discovering moss
Link: discovering and learning the word for "moss" on a nature walk: VIDEO
fascinating mud
Link: mother waits while child discovers mud: VIDEO

This child, on a nature walk with his mother, has experienced moss for the first time. He found, smelled, touched, many different patches. Learning a new word, such as "moss" is so much more meaningful when it is attached to a real objects and can be repeated over and over. 17 months.

Handling mud, sand, water, is a delightful exploration for the young child. Stomping in puddles, squishing bud between one's toes or fingers and discovering it on the palms of the hands, are all parts of childhood that children need. it is very beginning of the understanding of matter, of physics. 17 months.


slotted box

Link: the slotted box: VIDEO

Link: source of this toy: BOX WITH DISCS

Joyful Child Montessori 0-3 overview and catalogue is available from Michael Olaf or Amazon

Between the ages of 1 and 3 the development of the hand, eye-hand control, concentration span, thinking and planning, continue at a rapid rate. This child is putting round and square wooden discs in a wooden box with a slot at the top. The round discs can be held anyway and they go through the slot, but the square ones take a bit more thinking and handling, a further challenge. This child has mastered both. 17 months.
 

This site is was created by Susan Mayclin Stephenson, Montessori AMI Assistant to Infancy

ADOLESCENTS LEARNING ABOUT PARENTING
The Montessori 0-3 information is part of the Human Development curriculum for a Montessori Middle school: Human Development Course

GENERAL MONTESSORI INFORMATION
The main Michael Olaf page has very interesting information about Montessori in general: www.michaelolaf.net

MORE BIRTH TO THREE YEARS INFORMATION
Click here for the main birth to three page, The Joyful Child, which contains all 18 chapters of the Montessori Assistants to Infancy (birth to three) overview, and ideas for materials, toys, furniture for children at this age and their parents. It is also a catalogue of mobiles, toys, books, and other materials to order: Joyful Child

DEVELOPMENTAL MATERIALS FOLLOWING MONTESSORI PRINCIPLES The Montessori Shop

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