Benefits of Montessori Wooden Toys
When you start learning about Montessori, you’ll notice the focus on wooden toys. Toys play a pivotal role in the social, creative, and motor development of children. Unlike their plastic competitors, wooden toys provide your child with activities that do not have a set outcome. In particular, wooden toys encourage imaginative and creative open-ended play.
Today we will explore the many advantages to playing with Montessouri wooden toys.
What is a Montessori toy?
A Montessori toy stimulates learning by encouraging kids to experiment and play freely. They are typically wooden toys children can hold and touch. As young children play with these wooden toys, they will manipulate the objects, which helps develop their fine motor skills. Examples of Montessori toys include wooden blocks, bamboo counting sets, wooden puzzles, sandpaper letters, musical instruments, etc.
Montessori toys challenge children to use their imagination to create through trial and error. However, we would not consider a LEGO set a Montessori toy because these sets include specific directions for children to develop only one possible outcome. With a Montessori toy, the possibilities are limitless.
Montessori toys empower children to:
- Enjoy visually appealing toys, and relate this visual appeal to a natural material (far more sustainable than plastic).
- Play with the same toys for longer, encouraging repetitive lessons for enhanced development.
- Explore new abstract concepts during open-ended play.
- Play with something safer than plastic, which allows for more independent learning.
The foundation of Montessori toys
While there are many different options, there are a few fundamental aspects across all Montessori toys. Generally speaking, Montessori toys are:
- Simple – Montessori toys are created to enable children to discover, learn, and explore independently. When toys overstimulate (especially electronic plastic toys), they distract from the learning process.
- Natural – Biological materials provide babies and children with more information about their actual world. Woods and metals replicate how textures taste, feel, smell, and can be manipulated in reality. They are also free of harmful chemicals and toxins found in plastic toys.
- Reality-based – Kids under the age of six cannot distinguish fantasy from reality. Montessori blocks and other toys provide methodical information that replicates relationships and structures in the natural world. Toys with accurate results and consequences (like a car rolling down a ramp) allow children to learn how the world functions.
- Functional – Montessori toys require a child to actively participate in their play. The best wooden toys encourage development through exploration and manipulation, such as building with blocks.
Benefits of Montessori wooden toys
Wooden toys are beneficial for a wide range of reasons. Aside from looking more visibly appealing, wooden toys also reinforce many of the values and principles of Montessori learning.
Wooden toys aid in sensory development
Most plastic toys are lightweight and cheaply made, which creates an unrealistic version of what they look like in real life. Wooden toys range in size, density, and weight. This increases a child’s awareness of the world around them. It also allows children to experiment with different textures and feelings not typically found with plastic toys (such as the natural grain of the wood, grit of sandpaper, and temperatures).
Wooden toys are more realistic, attractive, and colorful
It’s a well-known psychological fact that colorful items are more eye-catching and attractive. So it makes sense that painted toys are more appealing to children. Montessori toys are made up of wood and different types of paint to provide a realistic and attractive replica of the real-world object. Whether it’s wooden fruit, automobiles, or kitchen items, Montessori toys give a more realistic play option. Young minds have a hard time distinguishing between fantasy and reality. These toys are designed to help children develop a better sense of reality while exploring freely and creatively.
- Wooden fruits and vegetables (Viga, Hape, or Erzi)
- Wooden construction sets or automobiles
- Wooden blocks or shapes (Grimm’s Rainbow Forest, weather building set, or Grapat mandala set)
- And more
Provide real-world applications and experience
Montessori toys provide children with real-world experiences through play. From exploring in their wooden kitchens and playing house with their dolls to harvesting their fruits and vegetables and playing cashier, these toys are designed to encourage exploration through free play while simultaneously helping your child learn about realistic world objects.
- Wooden kitchen sets
- Wooden scales or cranes
- Cash register (Viga or Hape)
- Doctor or veterinarian (Viga medical kit or By Astrup doctors suitcase)
- And more
Built to last from sustainable materials
Unlike plastic toys, which contain harmful chemicals and wreak havoc on the environment, wooden toys are built to last from natural materials, such as wood, metals, or felt. In particular, wooden toys are durable and built to stand even the roughest wear and tear of childhood adventures. Additionally, wooden toys are safe for younger children who are more prone to putting items in their mouths.
Montessori wooden toys from Toy Box
Are you interested in supplementing your child's play with educational and fun wooden montessori toys? The toy enthusiasts at Toy Box can help! We have a wide range of toys to entertain and educate your children. From wooden Montessori toys and Magna Tiles to Grapat mandala and cuddly dolls By Astrup, we have a wide range of fun and exciting toys to enhance your child's next imaginative play session!
We encourage you to virtually browse our latest inventory. Need a little help? We’d love to talk to you more about finding the perfect gift for your child.Contact a member of our team to learn more.