Wondering what fun, educational gifts to get a toddler? Here are 15 of the very BEST Montessori toys for 2-year-olds to give for birthdays, Christmas, or ANY occasion! When you pick one of these options, you can’t go wrong!
What is the Montessori Method?
The Montessori Method was developed by Maria Montessori, MD, in 1897. It’s a child-centered approach to education and development that embraces hands-on, multi-sensory activities that kids can engage in at their own pace.
What Are Montessori Toys?
Montessori is becoming more and more popular and many families are choosing to adopt the lifestyle with their children but, if you don’t know much about Montessori, it can be difficult to know if you are choosing good Montessori toys for 2- and 3-year-olds.
What qualifies as a Montessori toy?
Not every toy qualifies as a Montessori-based learning toy. In fact, most of them don’t. If you’re searching for Montessori toys for 2-year-olds (or 3-year-olds!) it’s important to learn what distinguishes Montessori-style toys from everything else!
- Toys that are made from natural materials wherever possible – wood is most common.
- Focused on teaching one thing at a time – materials should be aimed at a specific milestone (ex: fine motor development, language development, etc)
- Practical life tasks are one of the cornerstones of Montessori education – think chopping, sweeping, etc.
- No Bells and whistles – choose passive toys that require kids to manipulate them.
- Realistic – Montessori toys tend to be lifelike, providing an opportunity to learn about the world around them
There is much more to Montessori, but sticking to these very basic guidelines will ensure you’re able to find a Montessori toy for 2-year-olds that suits your child and your home.
Top Montessori Toys For 2-year-olds On Amazon
Don’t worry if you are still a little lacking in inspiration because I’ve done all the hard work for you and compiled this great list of Montessori educational toys for toddlers.
If you’re wondering where to buy Montessori toys for 2-year-olds, Amazon has a terrific selection! Here’s our list!
Young toddlers, in particular, will love this colorful, wooden rainbow stacking toy that can be used in many different ways to create shapes and patterns.
It’s really great for young toddlers to help them learn all about colors and pattern recognition when trying to rebuild the rainbow, as well as refining hand-eye coordination.
Dressing boards are great for teaching toddlers practical life skills like using zippers and buttons or even tying laces.
They are commonly seen in curriculums and are used to prepare young children for all the challenges that dressing themselves presents.
It’s best to try and avoid plastic when buying Montessori materials but these wavy river stones are a great tool for any toddlers showing a particular interest in gross motor development.
They are durable enough to use outside and non-slip. These wavy river stepping stones are also great for teaching balance and coordination skills.
This version is actually a much more affordable version of these much-loved materials in Montessori families.
Looking For More Learning Toy Gift Ideas?
Matching cards and figurines are a staple in any Montessori environment and kids can use them from a much younger age than some people realize.
When children are very young let them hold the card and the figurine while you say the word out loud. Soon you can ask them to “point to the ____” and watch and see how much information they may have soaked up.
Later move on to matching skills and have them match the items themselves, then finally use them for letter identification.
Color matching is something that is kids learn from a young age in Montessori. These colored pegs provide a great chance for toddlers to recognize the differences and similarities in colors. It’s simple and engaging, making it one of the best Montessori toys for 2 year olds.
Ok, so this is not technically a “toy” but I just had to include it on the list!
If you’re looking for a gift for a friend or loved one who practices Montessori at home with their toddler, a standing tower is an absolute must-have item!
Thie method is all about teaching children independence, and this commonly used item in Montessori homes allows them the freedom to reach things and help parents in the kitchen. If they don’t already have one, this gift will be one of the best gifts you could give.
This wooden cylinder set teaches all about different sizes and how to recognize similarities in materials. There is also a colored version but the plain wooden set is slightly more in line with the Montessori principle of focusing on having activities teach one isolated skill at a time.
This set is another great way of teaching color matching as well as promoting balance and developing motor skills.
This colored balls and cups game is very appropriate, but it’s not one of the typical go-to materials, seen in every single classroom, so there’s a much higher chance your friend or loved one doesn’t already own it.
Another classic is the wooden moveable alphabet but this is a material that’s only suitable for older toddlers as this method does not typically teach writing skills until about 3 years old.
This child-sized cleaning set is a perfect example of practical life activities kids learn with this method. It’s essential in any Montessori home to have cleaning equipment that toddlers can collect and use themselves.
Young children love helping clean up their messes, and a simple task like washing a chair can occupy them for a very long time! A child cleaning up their own mess – what better Montessori toys for 2 year olds can you find?
Another great language material is the sandpaper letters found in most Montessori classrooms. These are only suitable for older toddlers 3 years and older.
They are a staple though so definitely something that will be useful in the future.
You may not like the idea of knives being in toddler toy gift guide. However, slicing is another essential life skill kids learn a very young age (think 18 months upwards).
This set allows young children to learn this skill slowly and carefully with all of the right tools. First, using a blunt knife to chop soft items like bananas and working up to using the crinkle cutter.
One of the sensitive periods in Montessori is “refinement of the senses” and these sound cylinders are great for that period.
Each cylinder has a slightly different level of sound from soft to loud and kids need to listen intently to match the sounds so it’s also a great way to build concentration.
This practical life teeth brushing activity works wonders for young children in helping them learn how to correctly brush their teeth.
Self-care is a big part of Montessori living. Young children learn to wash themselves, brush their teeth and comb their own hair from an early age.
15. Musical Toys
Musical instruments are another thing you will see in pretty much every classroom. They help promote the refinement of the senses as well as creativity. Toddlers love making noise and music – that makes this one of my favorite Montessori toys for 2-year-olds!
I hope this list of the best Montessori gifts for 2-year-olds helps you choose a gift he loves!