I’m trying to split my reading time between teaching and parenting. So, clearly, this book, The Montessori Toddler by Simone Davis, is for the latter. It was a book I have wanted to read for the sake of learning more about this Montessori structure – I have heard about it but didn’t truly understand the practice.
I bought the book before my little was born. I’ve finally read the book with the help of a friend. We decided to do a book study of the pages.
As we read, we met (via Google Meet) to discuss the chapters, what we learned, things we liked… but most of all to discuss raising our babies who are only two months apart in age. We were definitely going through things at a similar pace which really help fuel the discussion. Often times we were just randomly talking about something and it was the next chapter or we read something and then our littles began to display the behavior.
What I most liked about this book (whether you adapt the system in whole, in part, or not at all), was the practical points. Davis has clearly raised children – her own and those she cares for. The points she raises are timely and on point. From decluttering, to putting things in baskets, to indicators of meaning.
I often found myself asking ‘Why didn’t I think of that?’ For example, my little loved to take his wood puzzles and dump them on the floor. I would then have to clean up over 50 little piece. I quickly learned, my little thought that was the point. So, solution: put each puzzle in a tray and dismantle it. Now, my little picks up a bin and puts the pieces in the puzzle. The transformation was immediate. The reward priceless.
There is even a chapter for the adults – little reminders that you need to care for yourself too.
I have certainly accepted some aspects of the book. I am trying to ensure my little plays with non-computerized games and learning toys. I am also trying to ensure he is part of the daily life. Even doing the dishes, which means I must accept the excessive amount of water that will spill onto the floor – my little is after all sure he is helping mommy.
That is not to say that I don’t have my struggles. But, I also liked that within the pages I found helpful step-by-step ideas to overcome some of them.
One key (no matter your parenting choice): slow down, breathe, and reflect on life from your child’s perspective/level. Parenting requires you to be at your best for the best.