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Montessori Activities for young Toddlers

Updated: Nov 7, 2023

Did you know that a toddler as young as one can begin learning Montessori?

Many of us find it nearly impossible to imagine young toddlers engaging in Montessori activities.

Even though , according to Maria Montessori, there should be little adult supervision during activities, where adults let children make their own choices while they play, following their natural curiosity and instinctive drive, in this case, all this will be possible only if we observe.

They won't be able to sit still, will eat the paint, and have no idea what it means to follow instructions, however , you can still engage in Montessori activities as a toddler as young as 1-2 years old.

I am here to share with you how you can start implementing Montessori methods at home long before your child is ready to complete a puzzle or even hold a pencil. This also means that you have a wide range of Montessori activities to choose from that are appropriate for the baby's age and stage of development.


You should provide your toddler with activities that are difficult enough to motivate them but not so difficult that they become frustrated. Your only task as parents is to take note of the child's capabilities as well as her feelings of helplessness.

For many of these activities, I recommend you to wait for after your toddler has mastered gross motor abilities. The process of practicing these activities should be fun and exciting, If you introduce activities that are beyond your child's motor skills, he may become irritated and lose interest in engaging in and learning. In summary, Montessori said that each child has different needs and you must take into account the various aspects of your childs personality

Here are a few examples:

Matching 2D to 3D objects

Around the age of 18 months, your toddler might be able to mach a photo with his most seen around the house object.
Taking pictures of his most frequently seen things can be a fun way to practice this skill.

Start with something familiar like his pacifier, favorite hat, toy truck, or his book.
You should then print them out in full color (to make it easier for them to recognize ) and mount them on sturdy card stock using paper glue.

How to play?

Show him a card, and then have him reach for the corresponding item. You should to initiate the game then explain the rules. Young toddlers learn faster with demonstration plus it will be more clear to him that what he is seeing in a picture is a representation of the 3D object.

As he gets older, you can upgrade the game by printing another set of duplicate cards for him to match. For this game he will be looking for pairs of cards that features the same image.

Scooping puff balls

Like matching cards, scooping puff balls is another great activity to help your young toddler focus on a single task. The first step is to get two bowls ready, one of which will be empty and the other will contain puff balls.
Then, hand him a shovel or scoop of large sizes( you can use the beach toys shovel)
Teach him how to transfer the balls from one bowl to another using a scoop.
When the first bowl is empty, he should transfer the balls from the second bowl to the first bowl.


When your child is 15 months old, give him thick crayons that he can easily hold so that he can practice his fine motor skills.

I recommend taping a large sheet of paper to the wall (or the floor) and allowing him to scribble.
You can use whatever papers you want, as long as you give him enough space to color freely.

Pour Water

Give your child a measuring cup and demonstrate how to pour water from one bowl to another before handing him the cup to try.
Be aware that your toddler will get the floor and his clothes wet; take the necessary precautions to ensure that he does not slip and injure himself on a wet floor.

Squeezing sponges

The sensory experience of squeezing sponges with water will delight your toddler.
Begin with two bowls, one filled with water and one empty. Then, dip a sponge into the bowl of water.

Then instruct him to take the sponge from the first bowl and squeeze the water into the empty one.
Repeat until the majority of the water is in the second bowl. Even so, you can keep going by squeezing the water back into the first bowl.

Doing chores

According to Maria Montessori principles, children should be given ample opportunities to learn to be independent. The child's nurturing development involves him not just in learning self-help skills but also in caring for others, beginning with his personal needs and extending to his environment.

Your toddler can participate in practical life activities as young as 14 months. These are the few ways he could help you:

  • Water plants

  • Wipe surfaces

  • Place the clothes into the dryer.

  • Place and take the clothes into/ out of the dryer.

  • Help garden


Help him out by adjusting his workspace to fit him smaller frame. You could, for instance, provide him with a lightweight stool he can move around as needed in order to access higher shelves. Adjust the height of his closet rods so he can easily access his clothing. Additionally, invest in kid-sized cleaning tools like these for him.

Playing with wooden toys

Wooden toys are your best bet if you're shopping for Montessori materials.They’re beautiful, durable, simple and affordable. Here are a few suggestions for your youngster:
  • Carrot Harvest

  • Musical Instruments

  • Wooden Sorting and Stacking Toys

  • Building Blocks

  • Train

  • Race Track Toy


Stringing dried pasta or beads is a great activity for helping your toddler develop fine motor skills.
Give him a string he can easily grasp, like a shoelace, and a tray of large, short pasta like rigatoni. Obviously, supervision is essential when dealing with any item this small.

Pasta can be pre-dyed in bright colors to create eye-catching designs for your toddler.
Then, have him thread the pasta onto the string and then have him tie the ends of the necklace together.

Coloring, stringing and pushing toothpicks can help your toddler develop fine motor skills. Matching cards will teach the relation between 2D and 3D objects. Squeezing sponges (or pouring water) and scooping puff balls allow your child to concentrate.
Finally, try to get him to help out with some light housework.

Fortunately, you no longer have to worry about him ingesting the paint because you have a few new ideas to introduce. xoxo 😘


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