Toddler & Preschooler Montessori Activities

This article will discuss how toddlers and preschoolers can use Montessori materials in their playtime. These Montessori activities explore a variety of skills, like matching pairs, and color sorting, that form the basis of many other types of games or tasks. They also help your child build self-esteem as they master new skills and solve puzzles with minimal assistance from adults. Keep reading to learn more about this education and available activities for toddlers and preschoolers.

What Are Montessori Activities?

Montessori activities are a type of educational approach that Maria Montessori developed in the late 19th century. They are based on her concept of “child-centered early childhood education.” Montessori activities are activities that use natural materials to help teach concepts and skills to children ages 0-6 years old. Such education is based on principles that have been proven to help young children learn by developing their potential in three areas: physical, intellectual, and social.

Reducing stress and allowing time for learning with “free play,” the form of activities encouraged through Montessori education, usually consists of 25-30 minutes a day. Developmental activities typically last 15-20 minutes each, but some may go as long as 30 minutes.


This activity is a simple way to help your toddler or preschooler learn about non-magnetic materials. Because they are exploring unknown items, they will have increased interest and curiosity in the process. To do this activity, provide a small amount of magnetic and non-magnetic objects. Plastic toys, ceramics, and other art supplies are good choices that can be found on


This is a great activity for toddlers and preschoolers because it’s simple. It can be accomplished without having to give your child too many instructions. To do this activity, provide a small amount of materials that sink or float in water. Plastic balls are the best choice for this type of material.


This activity is easy enough for toddlers and preschoolers to do by themselves but gives them some control over their experience with the activity when they need help getting started. To set up this activity, simply use a variety of items with some kind of hinge. Examples include a large matchbox car, puzzles, and Play-Doh lids.

Stereognostic Or Mystery Bag

This is an activity that can be done at home or in the classroom. The best part is that it allows toddlers and preschoolers to use their imagination as they manipulate the objects inside the bag. Prepare a “mystery bag” for each child to set up this activity. You can easily make your own by wrapping items you have at home on paper or covering them with colorful material.

Colour Sorting/Finding

This is an activity that can be used to help your child learn how to sort items or find something when they are out of view. The hands-on nature of this activity may be especially attractive to toddlers and preschoolers and will make them feel accomplished when they get the hang of it. This can be done with clay, paper, or other craft supplies.

Sort Small To Big

This variation of the “Sort Small To Big” activity in the Montessori materials and activities book. The difference is that you can use large items to sort with rather than just small items. To do this activity, provide your child with a small and large ball. They can manipulate them until they can see how they are different sizes or by getting them to roll down their body.

You can make this activity fun by providing the materials in different shapes of containers, such as boxes or bags. When it comes time to sort them, use the right-sized containers for the type of items you are sorting.

Matching Pairs

This simple activity allows your child to compare real objects and pictures by having them match them together. You can use this activity with any materials in the Montessori materials and activities book.

This is a great activity for your child to do on their own. By using puzzle pieces or other small items, this activity teaches children how to match up items that are similar. To do this activity, provide 6-10 pairs of items, depending on your child’s age. Examples of objects you can use include: 3 buttons, beads with holes in the middle, or marbles that are all black or all different colors. You can also use similar shaped blocks or counters found in a game played by two players.


This is another simple activity from the Montessori materials and activities book. It requires your child to rely on their hands as they manipulate small items. Children can learn how objects can fit and fold into each other in different ways by using a variety of small mementos found around the house.

Play Dough Tray

This activity is a simple one to do on your own. You can use it whenever you have a few spare moments. To set this up, provide your child with an empty tray or container to use in whatever way they like. You can provide some Play-Doh so they can get creative.

The Bottom Line

These activities are simple enough to be done on their own or with your toddler or preschooler. By using a variety of small items, you can help your young one understand that the end of an item is not just its beginning. You can do this with things such as long pieces of yarn, string, lace, and ribbon.

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