Hello everybody !
I am back with some Montessori Home tips for the next little while. This one is about CLUTTER !!! One of the main aspect people notice in a Montessori space (classroom or home) is the lack of clutter (in the children areas at least).
It is the trend to talk about decluttering weather we follow a KonMari method or another Minimalist approach. If it has become such an important topic, it’s because WE HAVE TOO MUCH STUFF, TOO MANY THINGS ! People feel like they are possessed by their belongings and consumerism is not helping. Everywhere there are advertisements of one kind or another telling us we need this or that and pushing us to buy.
Well, to make a Montessori home, you do not need to be under clutter or to buy all the toys and make it expensive if you don’t want to or cannot. Montessori is way more than that (see previous posts!!).
To start, let’s just talk about our children and how we can make it easier for them and us to feel more peaceful in a de-cluttered environment.
When it comes to choices, and Montessori education offers choices to the child, LESS IS MORE. We do not give the child too many choices because it becomes overwhelming (we feel the same when there is too big of a choice in the grocery store for example).
In our home, for our daughter we have one clear box of activities and toys for her stage that we keep in the back (closet, storage room…) and we keep only 6 out on her shelves in the main room. This is enough. These activities are chosen carefully based on her level of interest in certain things and where she is in her development. These work on language, hand-eye coordination and art right now.
She does not feel overwhelmed, we don’t either. Her space is calm and she knows how to place back her activities on the shelf when she is done using it.
For example at almost 21 months, she has vocabulary cards, nesting dolls, a puzzle, a basket of building blocks, a tray with paper and crayons (she can also ask for another medium if she feels like it), a basket of bean bags. Some of them are closed ended activities with a direct purpose (but we encourage imagination as well) and others are open ended activities to let her express her creativity.
The rest of our house is also prepared for her so she has lots of Practical Life activities easily accessible and freedom of movement through the house.
That’s it for now, just think about how you could purge extra toys/activities that are too loud, too bright, too overwhelming, broken, unattractive. Then, reorganize what you keep in clear bins and then choose 6 for your child to put out in her play/work space.
By de-cluttering toys, we bring order and peace to our children: LESS IS MORE.
How do you keep your child’s space out of clutter ?