The Montessori Toddler, by Amsterdam Montessori teacher Simone Davies

montessori toddler

Toddlers can be a handful. The expression ‘the terrible twos’ says enough: toddlers are known to be difficult and obstinate. They won’t eat, won’t sleep, won’t listen, and in general go left when you want them to go right!

Simone Davies, Montessori teacher and writer of the new publication ‘The Montessori Toddler‘, sees things in a different light. After having worked with nearly a thousand toddlers over the past 9 years, she actually thinks that they are brilliant. She feels that toddlers are generally misunderstood and that they need support, love and patience where often they are encountered with frustration and impatience. By writing ‘The Montessori Toddler’, her aim was to create a comprehensive guide to raising toddlers in a calm and confident way, following the principles of which the basis was laid out by dr. Montessori.

Dr. Montessori was one of the first female doctors in Italy. Her interest was mainly in the needs of children with learning disabilities and gradually shifted her work from medicine to education. In her classrooms she developed her own ideas of teaching. Unlike the traditional way of teaching a child, where the teacher decides the pace of learning for the entire class, in the Montessori approach the child is in charge of their own learning. It’s the Montessori teacher’s job to give support and to provide the right environment to learn. To ‘plant the seed to grow a curious and responsible human being’.

montessori toddler

In ten chapters, Simone explains the principles of Montessori and how to apply these at home and as part of the upbringing. She discusses how to set up activities and crafts, how to arrange your house, how to deal with tantrums and potty training. She writes about how to encourage curiosity in children, stimulating them to make discoveries, to learn and think for themselves and to come up with solutions. All of this is brought to you in a very practical way which feels non-overwhelming and totally doable. She keeps making sure the adult takes a relaxed approach — it should all be fun, after all. She offers tips on physical and mental wellbeing, on being mindful, on setting limits — on being a calm, clear and balanced guide for the child.

The Montessori Toddler‘ is beautifully illustrated by Hiyoko Imai, complementing the straightforward and basic approach of the text really well. This book is a definite recommendation to new parents, to parents of toddlers and to parents who are generally interested in Montessori style parenting!

xxx Esther

PS Dealing with teenage negativity — and the similarity between the teenage and the toddler brain


Comments (2)

September 3, 2018

Yes! Thank you for posting something about Montessori. All three of our daughters are in Montessori school. We are fortunate the school goes through 6th grade so they can stay after primary. Once you read about Montessori and bring it into your home you notice a huge change in your children and how you are. They are more independent and you see how their brain is thinking and also why they do certain things. You do have to let go of control and let them do things at their own pace. I did read a book called Montessori from the Start. This helped me be more relaxed when my third was born and she only had a couple of wooden toys. She was the most relaxed laid back kid I knew. We also didn’t do any activities and did things she wanted to do. That meant I had to do the grocery store shopping after bedtime because my third couldn’t handle it. I could go on and on about Montessori but that would be a couple pages.

September 4, 2018

I can’t wait for this book! I’ve been subscribed to Simone Davies’s newsletter for a while now and my child started at a Montessori school when she turned 12 months old. She’s thriving and we are so well-supported by her wise teachers! Thank you for this lovely book review. I pre-ordered this book immediately.

Leave a Comment