Albert Einstein once said that “play is the highest form of research.” From a young age, kids learn everything they need to know about the environment through play – and parents fill their houses with toys that the little ones adore.
However, not all toys are created equal.
Studies have shown that children at play act as researchers as they explore, experiment, and imagine new possibilities. The Montessori method is based on the idea that the adults’ mission is not to fill their children with information but instead provide an environment that supports their instinct to learn through play and explore the world independently.
Montessori toys are often referenced as the ‘smart toys’ and are not like most toys found at general stores. They are specially designed to help kids learn the full range of the skills they need to grow into intelligent, happy, and successful adults. Encouraging your child to play with Montessori toys could boost their cognition, motor development, and even social and emotional intelligence. In essence, they empower children of all ages to be independent, resourceful, and pragmatic explorers.
Let’s dive into the six main ways that Montessori toys can nurture your child’s inner explorer:
1. Montessori toys enhance motor functions and spatial awareness
Studies show that educational toys can help develop sensory and motor skills in children. From crafty toys and activity-based games to colorful lights and sounds, Montessori toys can stimulate vital nerve pathways that are crucial in developing essential fine motor skills and determine your child to be physically active.
Moreover, Montessori is described as embodied education, as it involves engaging as many senses as possible while playing and learning. Motor and cognitive development are closely linked, therefore mobility-based games allow both to thrive. Check out our multifunctional wooden toys to learn more.
2. Montessori toys boost intelligence and enhance problem-solving skills
From memory to coordination and increased literacy, educational toys and games following Montessori’s principles are proven to boost your child’s IQ and problem-solving skills. Puzzle games, for example, require critical thinking skills and can improve reasoning and decision-making. A child continually engaging in puzzle games will become an adult able to solve problems quickly, even under pressure.
3. Montessori toys develop emotional intelligence
Emotionally intelligent children will be able to identify, evaluate, control, and express their emotions in a healthy manner. Some toys will put your kid through various situations that trigger a wide range of emotions. In combination with a Montessori-inspired parenting style, your child will develop self-awareness, empathy, emotional control, and self-motivation.
4. Montessori toys develop social intelligence
You can inspire your little one to be a social being and develop strong interpersonal skills in the comfort of your own home, even before reaching the age of kindergarten. Montessori toys put your child through social situations that involve role-playing, sharing, bonding, caring, being patient, and leading. Developing social intelligence is just as important as reaching other milestones, such as learning to walk, talk and read. Promoting healthy relationships with peers is critical to building a solid foundation for self-esteem, communication skills, and meaningful relationships.
5. Montessori toys improve concentration
Parents can train and improve a child’s ability to focus by engaging them in games that require concentration on a task for an extended period without excluding the “fun” element. Puzzles, card games, and memory games improve attention and concentration skills, which will be essential in their academic years and adulthood.
6. Montessori toys ignite creativity and imagination
Albert Einstein also said that “imagination is more important than knowledge.” Montessori toys don’t exclusively foster learning essential life skills but also encourage your children to unleash their imagination and creativity while learning the art of “thinking outside the box.” Moreover, creativity and imagination produce a sense of control and confidence, as they allow children to contribute to their surroundings and become co-creators of their world.
Harvard researcher Tony Wagner describes Montessori education as a pathway to creativity in his book called “Creating innovators” and shows that some of the most remarkable innovators of the modern world have a Montessori background.
When it comes to toys, less is more
In conclusion, Montessori toys don’t simply keep your child entertained but also benefit their mental and physical health. The Montessori approach when it comes to toys is simple: purchase fewer, purposeful, high-quality, multifunctional toys made with natural materials. According to a recent study, kids are happier when there are fewer toys to choose from, as this approach creates more room for creativity, imagination, and skill development.
If you check out the Nobsi store, you’ll find multifunctional toys made from ethically sourced wood, designed in accordance with Montessori’s principles.