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Montessori from the Start: The Child at Home, from Birth to Age Three Paperback – July 22, 2003
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1. The authors do a great job at explaining how the Montessori principles can be applied to newborns. There are NO other books that do so, and the authors are very explicit in stating that the principles are what counts - the application is up to the parent. (But this can be very hard for parents in our "how-to-manual"-driven culture). The most important concept is that of observing the child closely and paying attention to all his cues so you know what works for your child. I take this to mean that I am the final judge of how I implement Montessori methods for my child, and that suits me just fine.
2. The authors recommend the child bed - basically a twin/full mattress on the floor. When I read about this, I thought painfully about the $$$ spent on the crib, co-sleeper, and pack'n play, all of which my child has refused to sleep on in favor of a twin-size daybed we already had. When I discovered that he only wanted to sleep in a big boy bed, I researched a bit on the safety of doing so and other sleep-issues, and found that these authors are not the only ones to suggest a bed on the floor. Dr. Sears (The Baby Sleep Book: The Complete Guide to a Good Night's Rest for the Whole Family (Sears Parenting Library)) and Elizabeth Pantley (...Read more ›
I also strongly object to some of the authors' suggestions in the chapter entitled "Personal Care". They recommend intensive toilet training beginning at 12-15 months, and weaning from breastfeeding at 9 months, arguing that this will foster the child's feelings of independence. Both of these suggestions are contrary to the latest advice given by childcare experts. Few children show any signs of being ready for toilet training at such a young age -- most are still learning to walk, or have recently learned to do so, and for the parent to begin intensive toilet training at this time interferes with the child's natural instincts to be on the move. Furthermore it is much easier and faster to toilet train when the child is actually ready to do so, which in the vast majority of cases is not before the age of two.
The authors' advice to wean from the breast at 9 months is contrary to that of the American Association of Pediatrics, which recommends that breastmilk be the primary source of nutrition for all of the first year. This advice can also be dangerous.Read more ›
I've learned much more about child psychological development and age-appropriate ideas from "The New First Three Years of Life" by Burton White. It is chronologically ordered, then each chapter is subcatagorized.
There's a few other Montessori books on Amazon I'm going to try instead, such as "Basic Montessori, Learning Activities for Under Fives", "Teaching Montessori in the Home, the Pre-School Years", and "Montessori Play and Learn."
While we implement Montessori in our home, it is tailored to what we think is most appropriate for all of us. So while my son has learned to use the potty/toilet at nineteen months, he still nurses, and we sleep in a low family bed. I would not recommend this book; instead parents might like Patricia Oriti's At Home with Montessori, Angeline Stoll Lillard's Montessori: the Science behind the Genius, and of course Maria Montessori's The Secret of Childhood to get a better idea for how to bring Montessori into the home.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
I had heard briefly of Montessori principles and this was my first book on the subject. I feel confident now in what is Montessori practices and how to go about setting activities... Read morePublished 5 days ago by Lou
This book was given to me as a gift and before reading it I really didn't know much about Montessori. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
I read this book a while back and was surprised when I noticed some of the negative reviews. For me this book is so important largely because it is specifically geared towards the... Read morePublished 1 month ago by Paula Jessen
This book is a little more heavier and detailed than The Joyful Child. I would not read it as an introduction to Montessori, I would start with The Joyful Child first. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Amazon Customer
The suggestions in the book are reasonable. The key is to keep an open mind. It is still up to the mother if she wants to implement all or only some of the ideas presented in the... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Rochelle Camacho
Kids are so amazing and we don't give them enough credit or opportunity. I read this and immediately started doing things differently. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Amy H.
Obsessed. I went to Montessori school through grade 5. These principles are nostalgic but also eye opening as a first-time parent. Nearly every piece of gear I got was useless. Read morePublished 4 months ago by Pondrock