In honor of our 30th Episode, we dive into what a Montessori Education looks like for our sweet babies!
This week we discussed:
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I had so much fun recording Episode 30 of the Montessori Babies Podcast! If you enjoyed and think it may be helpful to someone you know, I would love it if you would leave a review and share with your friends and family!
Thank you so much to Essential Montessori for partnering with our show! Check out essentialmontessori.com to discover their amazing Montessori Baby Materials and use the code MONTESSORIBABIES for 10% off your order at checkout!
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A huge thank you to one of our amazing sponsors, EZPZ! Head on over to EZPZfun.com to discover their beautiful infant feeding products that were specially formulated by mothers and experts to cater to your baby's age and stage of development. Use the code MontessoriBabies10 at checkout for 10% off your order!
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Bianca A. Solorzano, M.Ed.
Baby Development & Montessori Consultant
And Your Baby Tour Guide
Bianca: [00:00:07] Welcome to Baby Tour Guides, Montessori Babies podcast. I'm your host and baby tour guide Bianca Solorzano And for the last decade, I have dedicated myself to helping parents, educators and caregivers Optimize baby development through a Montessori lens. This podcast is all about evolving our Montessori practice to make our time with our sweet babies easier, relaxed and so much fun. Let's jump into it.
Bianca: [00:00:37] This episode is sponsored by Essential Montessori. Everyone likes something different about essential Montessori materials. Maybe you like the local organic vegetable dyes they use. Maybe it's the callback for the classic designs by Dr. Maria Montessori. Or maybe you'll be starting a new family tradition of passing along a sunshine Montessori heirloom materials family owned and handmade in the U.S. since 2013. Only the essentials. Find out more at EssentialMontessori.com. And don't forget to use the code Montessoribabies for 10 percent off your order at checkout. And now for our show.
Bianca: [00:01:11] Welcome to episode 30 of our Montessori Babies podcast. Oh my goodness, we are 30 episodes in. This is so special and feels like such a huge milestone for our show and our wonderful listener community. And because this is our 30th episode, I have quite a show for you today. Our topic this week is about what a Montessori education for babies looks like. But before we get into that, I wanted to let you know that I have some huge announcements at the end of the show, so make sure to stay tuned. They are coming your way soon. Ok, so when considering a Montessori education for babies, I want to start with what your idea of education is. So when you think of the word education or the idea of education, what do you think of? Because I will tell you, before I studied and worked in this field, my idea of education was the schooling experience. So where you sit at your desk in a classroom and you learn about the subjects being taught to you. It was the ideas and things that occurred during those schooling hours. So, you know, in nursery or in early childhood or preschool age, it would look something like having a daily circle time or reading, you know, gorgeous kids books and zirkle, or having various crafting activities or offering opportunities for motor refinement, exploring nature.
Bianca: [00:02:33] You know, if you were at a Montessori school, it would look something like having a morning work cycle and the children driving themselves to the materials. But my idea before I started in this field was education was all within the school day. And now, now that I have learned about the infant mind and how they grow and develop, what I can say is that the education for the infant is constant. It's ongoing, and it includes all aspects of their day to day lives. So the education of the infant starts with the baby's first teachers, and that's their parents. It starts with their baby's first environment, and that's their home. So technically, the first environment is the womb, but their first environment in their new world is their home. So that would be, you know, their first learning space outside the womb. It starts with the daily interactions that occurs with baby and I mean, every single moment. And I also mean this literally because every second they're making millions of mental connections or synapses about their world. So they're born with this amazing inner will to learn about their world, who they are to their world and who the world is to them. And this starts from inside the womb as they get prepared to enter their new world. And then it blasts off after birth.
Bianca: [00:03:54] So to discuss this idea further, I want to start with a quote from a child development textbook that I studied back in my undergrad. And yes, I am totally that nerdy girl that kept my textbooks from my studies so I could reference them later on. And here I am, referencing them later on. So anyway, before I jump into this quote, I want to remind you of the definition that I have of Montessori because it's really important to consider. So Montessori is a pedagogical approach to education that aims to optimize the natural progression of human development. So keep this thought in your head as I jump into the quote. So here it is. Intellectual curiosity fuels babies drive to use physical skills. Babies reach, crawl and climb to get objects they desire. The urge to explore coincides with a budding sense of mastery. I can do it and independence. I can do it. How amazing is it that this came from a child development textbook? And it sounds so much like what Dr. Montessori shared in her observations about the observant mind? So that gives you a little glimpse of how. Connected, you know, these worlds are Dr. Montessori described the absorbent mind as that beautiful mind of the child that has this amazing inner light that drives them to learn about their new world and small, fun fact.
Bianca: [00:05:20] Dr. Montessori called this inner light the worm. So anyway, that's what I mean by the Montessori approach being aimed at optimizing the natural and beautiful way that humans develop. I had the unique opportunity to obtain my and my Montessori training before I had completed my degree, and I had studied development in my training and was implementing as I ran my classroom. And then at night, I was working toward my bachelor's degree in child development, and I remember sitting in those night classes thinking just how wonderful it is that there are mounds of overlap between Dr. Montessori ideas and the ideas in the current developmental world. And honestly, it made going into work that next day so much more exciting. And one point I want to make is that the monastery education for each baby will be unique to them because while there is a general timeline for development that children will generally follow, each baby is so beautifully different they hit various milestones at different points. They may reach various levels of consciousness or understanding at different points and their needs, their personality, their temperaments. They're also beautifully different. No two children are alike. So the Montessori education for the baby is every moment. This Montessori education are this beautiful, interactive moments where you give baby a bath and you're talking to them about the warm, soft water as they're experiencing it and they're watching you watch them and you're, you know, maybe singing and waiting for them to respond and you're having these beautiful serve and return experiences.
Bianca: [00:06:54] The Montessori education for the baby is honing in on things like development of concentration through materials and environment we offer and honoring sensitive periods and optimizing language acquisition in every moment and using purposeful language and moments to empower babies as they seek higher levels of independence. So all of these small moments throughout the day that you have with your baby or if you're a caregiver, the baby that that you're working with, these moments all add up to be their education because they're learning about their world in every single moment and every opportunity I can tell you. After years of working with hundreds of babies and Montessori schools and in homes, the monastery education for babies is pure magic. And not only does it offer this world of opportunity for the baby to continue to reveal themselves to us through the approach we take while optimizing their natural progression of development along the way. It also allows us to experience this magic with them. It can teach us to slow down, be present, observe and relish in the pure joy and endless potential that is the world of an infant.
Bianca: [00:08:11] And now for a quick message from our sponsor. One thing I can promise all of you is I will only ever promote products that I have tried and tested within my years of experience within the Montessori world. And that's why I am so excited To announce the Montessori Babies podcast partnership with EZPZ. So EZPZ provides all the feeding gear you need for babies first bites and sips all the way to feeding independence. Each collection is designed for a different developmental stage. The tiny collection is for infants, their mini collection is for toddlers, and the happy collection is for preschoolers. EZPZ products are made from one hundred percent food grade silicone, and they come in muted colors such as sage and blush. Other gorgeous colors like lime and coral, and some Montessori colors like blue and gray. Head on over to EZPZFun to check out the developmental benefits and safety features of each product and be sure to use the code Montessoribabies10 for 10 percent off at checkout. Thank you so much to easy peasy for sponsoring our Montessori Babies podcast and now back to our show.
Bianca: [00:09:22] And I'm getting teary eyed thinking about this. This pregnancy has me feeling all sorts of big feelings, which I know is normal. But given the nature of what I do and where my passions lie, I get all sorts of emotional about what's currently happening and about to happen, and I'm just so excited and so grateful. And so, yes, I had announced this to my email list and on my Instagram. But for those of you who check in here on the show, I am currently expecting my first sweet baby. I'm twenty two weeks and I don't know the sex of the baby. My husband and I decided that waiting until birth was right for us at this time, and I am just so excited to meet this child. It has been so much fun, you know, even just. Kind of getting to know them through their movements and getting to see them on, you know, various ultrasounds, and I am just so grateful and so excited. And anyway, that's one little fun announcement, but not the big announcement for today. That said, leading into my big announcement, I wanted to read a quote from the wonderful Dr. Montessori, and it's from the absorbent mind. So this quote is the tiny child's absorbent mind finds all its nutrient and its surroundings. Here, it has to locate itself and build itself up from what it takes in, especially at the beginning of life. We must therefore make the environment as interesting and attractive as we can.
Bianca: [00:10:47] The child, as we have seen passes through successive phases of development, and in each of these, his surroundings have an important, though different part to play in. None have they more importance than immediately after birth. I have felt this quote and continue to feel this quote so, so deeply. The importance of every aspect of infancy to the development of the child and the trajectory of, you know, the rest of their lives, their relationship they have with their world. It is so immense. Infancy is so important. And so I wanted to provide an opportunity for all of you, wonderful parents and caregivers to feel like your best, most prepared selves. Or, as Dr. Montessori would say, you're most prepared adult and in honor of learning about the education of our sweet babies and in honor of episode 30. I am so excited to announce that this spring I will be launching and teaching the monastery babies course. It feels so wild to finally be saying this out loud. This course has been a long time coming. It is truly my Montessori babies manifesto. It's a combination of my Montessori training, my bachelor's in child development, my master's and Montessori, my over decade of field experience with babies and parents, and helping my clients bring developmental theory and Montessori to their homes and my passions for our earliest learners. All of this is rolled into one easy to understand and go at your own pace course.
Bianca: [00:12:24] So to get into some of the details, it begins with learning about infant development and Montessori pedagogy. So we are laying a foundation for you to build your Montessori experience. You'll then learn how to implement the monastery ideas with your baby through your interactions through your home environment, set up through everyday involvement, through the Montessori material progression and so much more. And something that makes this course truly unique is that the implementation is categorized by stage of development versus age or month. And this is to offer my biggest support and love for what I've personally observed in my experience, and that's that every baby has a beautifully different path. Some babies, you know, may sit at five months. For example, other babies may take a little bit longer to sit, and both of those developmental paths are so beautiful. Some babies may walk at 10 months, for example, and others will walk at 14 months or even beyond, depending on the child. The beautiful thing about Montessori is that it truly is inclusive and honors all children and their uniqueness, and so I wanted to honor that in this Montessori babies course experience as well. So I've had many of you amazing listeners in our audience actually already reach out to me seeking a Montessori babies course experience. And for some of you, it was to find a deeper understanding of Montessori. For some, it was to learn how to build your own Montessori experience in your home, even with limited space that works for your child and family.
Bianca: [00:13:54] For some of you, you mentioned you were looking for an easy way to understand and then implement Montessori with your baby. And all of these are amazing reasons to want to continue to learn. And this course is perfect if those resonated with you, or if you're a parent or caregiver who wants to know how to build an in-home Montessori experience for your baby and your family because every child and family is so beautifully different. If you want to feel confident in the approach environment set up in materials that you're offering your baby, if you want to understand how to use infant development to implement Montessori approaches at just the right time, if you want to learn how to set up a Montessori environment even with limited space, as I mentioned, if you want to learn how to find, offer, set out, rotate, use the monastery baby toys and materials that optimizes the development of your child. If you want to understand how to follow the child or learn the Montessori approach to handling things like phases or transitions or behaviors or behavioral expression, as I like to call them, or if you want to be your best, most prepared self for you and your baby and the beautiful life you're building if you said yes to any of these reasons. Or any of these resonated with you? I definitely would suggest signing up for the Monastery Babies course mailing list.
Bianca: [00:15:13] It's linked in the show notes you'll be one of the first to discover when our enrollment events begin. You guys know I'm a Montessori teacher. I have been a teacher my entire professional life. I love teaching and I love offering these types of personal and professional development opportunities. In my past, I've done so through parent education events, through Mommy and me Montessori classes, through giving tours at Montessori schools and recently through my one on one client work through my baby tour guide blog and Instagram, and of course, here through my Montessori Babies podcast. And I really, really poured my heart and soul and brains into this fun, personal and professional development opportunity, and I really, truly cannot wait for you guys to experience this. I have the Montessori babies course page linked below, so definitely sign up for a course mailing list to be one of the first to find out when enrollment events begin. I will be having a pre-sale week from February 20th to twenty six, where the course will be 40 percent off, so definitely take advantage of that. And the course officially opens on March 20th, with an enrollment period from March 20th to twenty sixth. So keep those dates in the back of your mind. But if you sign up for the mailing list, you will have all of this information sent to you so you don't have to make any sort of sticky note.
Bianca: [00:16:32] I will be reminding you. And small fun fact when I was considering when to start teaching the Montessori babies course, I was looking at my calendar. I landed on March 20th because it's just in line with the spring equinox, and I thought it would be so perfect to launch in coordination with spring, as it truly feels like nature's way of offering a fresh perspective, higher understanding, new opportunities and and it just all feels so cosmic and meant to be. So let's do this. Definitely join the Monastery Babies Course mailing list and enroll in the course when enrollment opens, and we will ease into your Montessori journey equipped with the knowledge, skills and confidence to create a monastery experience that optimizes your baby's development every step of the way. Like I mentioned before, I have the Montessori Babies Course page linked below, so you can jump on that mailing list and be in the loop for all the events coming up. So that's about it. That's our show. That was our announcement. Thank you so much to our amazing sponsors, essential Montessori and easy peasy. I want to send a giant virtual hug to all of you amazing parents and educators and caregivers. We are absolutely in this together. Thanks again for tuning in to episode 30 of our Montessori Babies podcast, and I will catch you in the next episode. Bye!
Bianca: [00:17:58] Hey, it's Bianca, your baby tour guide here! Hopping back in to say thank you again for listening to this episode of Montessori babies. If you found this episode helpful and would like more information, Hop on over to BabyTour Guide.Com and download my free Montessori guide to join our community and receive the latest on optimizing development through a Montessori lens. You can also find me on Instagram and Facebook at Baby Tour Guide. Also, if you found this episode helpful to your Montessori practice, I would absolutely love it if you would leave a review to help other parents and educators find our show. Thanks again for listening, and I will catch you in the next episode bye.