The Munari Mobile is the first mobile in a series of four visual mobiles, designed to help develop the visual sense.
You can introduce this mobile from as early as two weeks. The Munari is made up of two dimensional shapes and a glass ball, which reflects the light. As babies are born only able to see in black and white, the mobiles are made designed with these two colours; two shades which offer the greatest contrast.
The light materials allow the mobile to move very slowly, allowing the baby the opportunity to practise the important skill of tracking it.
As this is a visual mobile it should be hung at about 30cm above your baby, out of arms reach while your baby lies flat beneath it on a suitable mat on the floor.
Note: Don'thang the Montessori mobiles above a baby's sleeping area. These mobiles are designed to help develop tracking and concentration. They are typically hung in the baby's movement area when they are awake and alert.
Hang the Kicking Ball from a mobile and place the baby underneath the ball so that he/she can kick it with his / her feet. Great for foot-eye coordination! Kicking is a greatpreparation for crawling. The kicking ball makes a gentle rattle sound when moved.
When your baby is ready to practice slithering or crawling the kicking ball rolls only slightly out of reach and not as far as a traditional spherical ball and so it offers the opportunity and motivation for the baby to go after it.
When your baby is ready to grasp objects, the design of this light ball offers opportunities to practise transferring objects between two hands. Simply detach the ribbon from the ball.
For babies from 4 - 5 months
Weight: 94 grams
Dimensions: Approximately 11cm in diameter
This ball is designed in a way that is easy for your baby to grasp. The bright colours and different textures of each section will attract the baby. Ideal as a first ball as it does not roll too far away!
The rolling cylinder with coloured ballsis the ideal material for babies who are just beginning to crawl or slither. Place it on its side and roll it just a little out of reach as incentive and motivation for your baby to move forwards. The colourful balls and gentle clacking sounds made attract the baby.
The bars on the Rolling Ball Cylinder are suitable for grasping. However even though this material is not all that large, take care not to introduce it too early as it may be a little heavy for younger babies.
I also find it nice to introduce something the baby has not seen before at this important moment when they are just venturing out into the world of crawling, so to entice them to move all the more eagerly!
6 Months +
Weight: 315 grams
Height: 13cm, Diameter across the top: 9.5cm
Montessori First Puzzles
When introducing puzzles to children start with the most simplest ones possible.
Offer these puzzles individually one at a time, showing a new one upon mastery of the previous one. Start with the largest circle. The triangle and square are harder as unlike the circle, the child has to line up the edges correctly.
Don't worry if the baby only removes the pieces to begin with. It will take some time before they are able to put them back in.
The beauty of this puzzle is that it is self-correcting. It is the child who figures out they may have made an error, rather than an adult. These puzzles develop problem-solving skills and help with hand-eye coordination. The large pegs help with the three-finger grip.
Language of square, circle and triangle can be introduced.
7 Months +
Weight: 359 grams
Cube and Box
The Box and Cube is a material to offer to your baby once they have mastered the egg and cup.
Montessori materials are offered to children in sequential order going from the easiest to the most difficult. They are always building on previous skilled learned.
The square dimensions mean the baby has an additional challenge and he / she has to line up the corners of the cube and the box in order to succeed in fitting the objects together. More precise hand movements are necessary and so the child refines his / her hand movements even further.
This material give the baby further opportunity to practice using both hands together.
Weight: 73 grams
Dimensions of Box: l x w x h - 5cm x 5cm x 2.5cm
Dimensions of Cube: l x w x h - 4cm x 4cm x 4cm
Single Cylinder Block
The single cylinder block should be offered at around 9 months, when you begin to notice the child working hard to grasp objects with the thumb and forefinger. Children love to practice this grasp, and this material is perfect for helping them perfect it.
9 Months +
Weight: 255 grams
Dimensions: l x w x h - 8cm x 7cm x 6cm excluding height of cylinder when placed in block.
Object Permanence Drawer
The Object Permanence Box with Long Drawer follows on from the object permanence box. The child has further practise exploring the concept of object permanence and to keep his interest an additional challenge is offered to the child with this drawer.
The child has to use his three finger grasp to open the drawer and comes to the realisation that he has to pull the drawer out quite far with his arm in order to retrieve the ball. The child is given further opportunities for problem solving.
Weight: 738 grams
Dimensions: 25cm long x 9cm wide x 9 cm high approximately
Babies love stacking!
At first your baby may only remove the rings. Later you could show your baby how to remove a ring and place in the ring holder on the base. Once this is mastered you could show the baby how to stack the rings.
As with many Montessori materials fine motor skills are needed to pick up, grasp and place the ring on the peg. It helps the baby to develop hand-eye coordination.
This small, light and simple Ring Stacker set comes with 6 colourful rings.
Weight: 243 grams
Dimensions: Diameter 17cm across the base x 11cm high