Here are our gift ideas for early childhood (3-6 year olds) inspired by Montessori principles and approach.
We are fans of the Montessori approach to learning and it's focus on encouraging order, independence, and self-motivation. It's principles can easily be applied at home by simply preparing an environment that encourages your child to practice real-life skills, engages their interests, and nurtures their inner desire to help.
Here are our 2021 top picks for Montessori inspired gifts (not in any particular order). Scroll down for more on each recommendation:
[Please note that this post does contain affiliate links. This means, at zero cost to you, we may receive a small affiliate commission when you click through our links and make purchases. We try our best to be fair and only share products that we truly love and recommend.]
*Products mentioned on this page are meant for children under adult supervision.. (Manufacturer's age recommendations are noted when available)
Mystery Bag Game
Guidecraft 3D Feel & Find. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
Guidecraft 3D Feel & Find Icons, Shape and Tile Matching Toy for Kids, Learning & Educational Toys (3 years + up)
Stereognostic bags also known as mystery bags help children develop their ability to visualize objects using only their sense of touch. Our little one loves mystery bags and exploring with her senses. This mystery bag game offers simple shapes and tiles to feel, sort and match.
Cooking & Baking Set
Tovla Jr. Kids Cooking and Baking Gift Set. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
Tovla Jr. Kids Cooking and Baking Gift Set with Storage Case - Complete Cooking Supplies for the Junior Chef - Kids Baking Set for Girls & Boys - Real Accessories & Utensils for the Curious Child
There are so many benefits to cooking with children. In the kitchen kiddos are exposed to basic math concepts, new words, explore with their senses, develop self confidence, and learn about healthy eating habits. This all-inclusive, gender neutral, cooking and baking set includes real kitchen tools that are child-sized, safe for little hands, easy to wash, and food safe. It comes with an apron, cookbook, recipes cards, and a handy storage box to keep everything organized.
Maple Landmark Earth Wooden Puzzle. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
This wooden earth shaped puzzle is great hands-on fun for learning about earth, space, and geography. It comes with 12 sturdy pieces, measures 11¾" dia. when finished, and includes 6" x 8" muslin drawstring storage bag.
Experiment with Magnets
Lauri Fun with Magnets. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
If your kiddos are fascinated by their awesomeness, check out this box full of STEM activities exploring the amazing properties of magnets. This kit includes 14 fun experiments. Some require adult guidance and common household items.
Stanley Jr. Children's Tool Set. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
This set of real tools was specifically designed for children. Young builders can develop their skills along side their favorite grownups building real projects and maybe even helping out around the house. Items in this set are functional and have sharp points and edges. Adult supervision and discretion is required.
PlanToys Lacing Board. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
A great open-ended toy for engaging the imagination and practicing fine motor skills. This simple eco-friendly lacing board comes with a sturdy wooden board, 2 laces, and 9 chunky wooden shapes that can be threaded or laced together.
Creative Outlet for Calming
Buddha Board Inkless Drawing Board. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
The Original BUDDHA BOARD Art Set: Water Painting w/ Bamboo Brush & Stand for Mindfulness & Meditation – Inkless Drawing Board - Painting & Art Supplies – Ideal Relaxation Gifts (5 years & up)
Master the art of letting go with this water painting set inspired by Japenese brush painting. Water appears as black ink when painted on the surface of this magical drawing board. As the water slowly evaporates the art will disappear... leaving you with a clean slate and clear mind. It's a great calming activity for children and adults.
U+ME Kids Gardening Tool Set. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
U+ME Kids Gardening Tool Set, Real Kids Garden Set, Eco Friendly Design | Outdoor Play | STEM Learning | Montessori Activities | Mini Things That Actually Work
Spruce up the garden with your little gardener. This gender neutral set encourages kids to play outside & learn about plants, nature & sustainability. Items in this set are functional and have sharp points and edges. Adult supervision and discretion is required.
Nature Inspired Game
Mudpuppy Shaped Memory Match. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
If your kiddo loves butterflies this butterfly shaped memory matching game is beautiful, fun, and educational. The artwork was inspired by the butterflies found in nature and a field guide outlining them is included. There's also a fun tropical frog version of this same game if your little one is into frogs.
Hands-on Field Guide
Backpack Explorer: On the Nature Trail. Click the photo to see the price on Amazon
Backpack Explorer: On the Nature Trail: What Will You Find? Field guide with Magnifying Glass (4-8 years)
This rugged take-along nature trail field guide is perfect for a budding explorer. It's packed with games and activities, stickers, a DIY trial map, and a real magnifying glass. It's a wonderful way to cultivate a love and appreciation for nature.