Get ready for a lot more posting on children’s activities that follow one of my favored educational models. I am always looking for more ways to engage with and teach my children and want to help other parents do the same. Today’s activity is a Montessori activity from the book How to Raise an Amazing Child the Montessori Way. It has quickly become my go-to Montessori guide for my children. 

When I had my first child, I found the transition to being home all. day. long. quite challenging. Let me just lay it out on the table…I was profoundly bored. Of course I was head over heels for my little one, but I expected to be able to “do” more with her right from the womb. Like teaching her to read or to bake a pie or something. I’m {slightly} kidding. Let’s just say my expectations weren’t completely realistic.

As I have gradually put my expectations into check, I have been on the search for activities for infants that are stimulating without being a florescent, rainbow, light-up, pop-out, battery-activated nightmare. I have been fortunate to find quite a few gems over the years and thought I would share my most recent find for those of you who may be experiencing something similar.

This activity is Montessori-inspired and great for infants up to a year and beyond. It is a very basic idea, but one that babies find so amusing and is so great for a baby’s development, that it should not be overlooked.

Treasure Basket

Simply gather things from around your house or nature that are made from natural materials that will stimulate one or more of your baby’s senses. Look for things that have different textures, make (soft) sounds, subtle scents, can be sucked on, or look interesting and put them in a basket. Your baby will explore in this basket, delighted by all of the sensory-driven objects, for a surprising amount of time. This a great activity for your baby to do independently, but it is also great to explore with your child and describe the objects as you play at other times.

Our favorite treasure basket ideas:
-pastry brush
-metal measuring spoons
-pebbles (large enough to not cause a choking hazard)
-wooden spoon
-small whisk
-pieces of felt and other fabrics
-satin ribbon
-sachet of lavender
-sealed bottles or jars of seeds or beans
-salt & pepper shaker with vanilla pods or coffee beans
-ball of knitting wool

**Of course be careful to avoid things that are choking hazards, anything that shouldn’t be mouthed (because we both know it will be) or potentially dangerous in any other way.

What’s your favorite baby game?

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