The advantages of a Montessori-style bedroom
In the words of the founder, Maria Montessori, “We must give the child an environment that he can utilize by himself: a little wash stand of his own, a bureau with drawers he can open, objects of common use that he can operate, a small bed in which he can sleep at night, an attractive blanket he can fold and spread himself. We must give him an environment in which he can live and play; then we will see him work all day with his hands and wait impatiently to undress himself and lay himself down on his own bed.”
How to set up a Montessori-style bedroom for your child
For starters you need to keep everything simple and de-cluttered. Carefully consider all the toys and furniture in the room to allow your child to move around as freely as possible (mentally and physically) to follow his interests. This might mean moving out some of the furniture and toys you currently have in the room and storing it (or donating it to charity) somewhere else in the house or garage.
Get a floor bed
There are many advantages to giving your child this other piece of freedom. There are benefits like the lower price, and that you don’t have to have a fancy bed frame – just put a mattress on the floor, et voila! Another advantage is that they won’t hurt themselves falling from the bed!
Make everything accessible
Keep everything at toddler level – make sure it’s all accessible so you can encourage him to be independent. An open shelving unit is ideal because it allows you to rotate and display a few toys from which he can choose every few days. It also makes things easier when it’s time to pack up. You can also make use of storage baskets, which are so covenient.
Make clothes accessible as well – either by packing it in the bottom two drawers of a dresser or bottom shelves of a cupboard. You can also use an open clothes rack to display some of his clothes or you can put some hooks on the wall where he can hang his gown, his towel, and other odds and ends.
Decorate the room so it’s inviting
Involve your little one in choosing a theme so that he becomes part of the decision-making process. It also means that you are making it a place where he wants to spend his time exploring and learning.
Don’t shy away from colourful decorations that engage the imagination. On a budget? Reuse your child’s artwork by framing them and putting them up on the wall, or even pinning them up as a display.
Pay attention to detail
You don’t have to have a big budget to make your toddler’s room a space where he loves to sleep and play. It’s the small details that make the difference. An interesting light, a fun bedside rug or lamp, some quirky knobs on his dresser that are easy for him to grasp – these are all small details that will turn his room into his own private haven.
Create a workspace
Set up an activity station with a small kiddies’ table and chair where he can get crafty! This is where he can build his puzzles or build Lego, draw and paint, play with Play-Doh, and more – all activities that encourage independent play.
Add a reading nook
A big floor cushion, some book ledges to display his books, even a teepee to crawl into make for the perfect hideaway for your little one to relax and discover the joy of books.
Content editor and writer on Living & Loving, Sonya has over 25 years experience in the media industry. She edited Living & Loving magazine for six-and-a-half years and is the former editor of Longevity magazine. She’s won numerous media industry awards and is passionate about the health and wellbeing of moms and children.
Outside of work, she enjoys trying out recipes, reading crime mysteries and thrillers, practicing yoga, and exploring new destinations.
Learn more about Sonya Naudé.