DIY Learning Activities for Toddlers – Montessori Approach

“The only way that we can live, is if we grow. The only way that we can grow is if we change. The only way that we can change is if we learn. The only way we can learn is if we are exposed”.- C. JoyBell C.

When creating learning experiences for children I aim for hands-on, practical, beautiful in simplicity, challenging, engaging and attractive activities based on the Montessori approach. In this post, I continue sharing lessons and activities I do with my 2.5-year-old toddler at home.


Taking care of belongings is a valuable lesson to teach children from their early years. This time my daughter washed her shoes after a play in the mud. Demonstration of such activity always comes first with minimum words and clear precise movements.

This activity is effective for a child’s development, because 

Animals and their homes montessori nature sort matching free printables sign up
  • develops concentration
  • encourages children to finish their task
  • children see the end result
  • children learn to take care of their belongings which teaches them to value their belongings
  • presents a sequence of events to follow

3D Shapes Matching Game

After a three-part lesson presentation, we often play a memory game:

– I place one of each shape in the other part of the room and whisper the name of the shape which my daughter needs to bring. She walks to the shapes to find the right one and brings it back to me. I show her the “master” shape. If it does not match, she goes back and attempts to find the matching shape.


Simple treading activity helps to develop

  • concentration
  • color recognition
  • shape recognition
  • fine motor

Animal footprint activity with play-dough – Blossom explores what prints different animals make on soft surfaces.


Painting using props with famous paintings.


Pre-reading activity “What does not belong?”. We revisit this activity often because this one is not that easy to explain and grasp for a young child. We usually revisit the same task until A. masters it without my help.


Sorting air/land/water animals. I find that there is quite a bit of language involved in the demonstration process and working with this job.


Dot game


Sorting animals by color. There is so much concentration, learning, and engagement that accompanies this activity when a toddler is at work.


A musical tray with real musical instruments is great for developing their sense of rhythm.


Learning to identify matching categories.


Hands on learning resources you might find helpful in your classroom

About Anastasia - Anastasia is an early childhood teacher and the founder of Montessori Nature - a blog about Montessori living and learning and nature-based explorations. With many years of experience working in a Montessori environment and homeschooling her children, she directed her passion for all things Montessori and nature into creating educational resources. You can learn more here and browse her printables on Teachers Pay Teachers.

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