Why Montessori Toys Should Be Made of Wood

As an expert in Montessori education, I have seen firsthand the benefits of using wooden toys in a child's development. While plastic toys may seem more convenient and flashy, there are many reasons why Montessori prefers toys made of wood and other natural materials. One of the main advantages of wooden toys is that they allow for imaginative play and encourage exploration. Unlike plastic toys, which often come with predetermined functions and sounds, wooden toys allow children to use their creativity and come up with their own scenarios. This type of play is essential for a child's cognitive and social development. Another important factor is safety.

Wooden toys are free of chemicals that can be found in plastic, making them a healthier option for children. As a parent, it's important to choose toys made from natural materials whenever possible to minimize exposure to harmful substances. But it's not just about safety and development – wooden toys also provide a unique sensory experience for children. The cold touch of metal or the varying textures of wood can stimulate a child's senses in a way that plastic cannot. This connection with nature is an important aspect of Montessori education. Furthermore, wooden toys offer a different weight and feel compared to plastic toys.

This is especially beneficial when it comes to puzzles, balls, and other similar toys. Children can learn about weight and size through hands-on play with wooden toys, while plastic toys often require a larger change in size to achieve a noticeable difference in weight. Many Montessori parents also appreciate Waldorf-oriented toys and other alternative learning philosophies. These types of toys are often made from wood and provide a more natural and holistic approach to learning.

The Environmental Impact

In addition to the benefits for children, wooden toys also have a positive impact on the environment. Unlike plastic toys, which are often made from non-renewable resources and end up in landfills, wooden toys are eco-friendly and biodegradable.

This means that they can be enjoyed by children without causing harm to the planet. Wooden toys are also free of PVC, phthalates, and other chemicals commonly used in plastic toys. This not only makes them safer for children but also reduces the environmental impact of their production.

The Importance of Visual Appeal

When setting up a Montessori nursery or playroom, it's important to consider the visual appeal of the toys. Montessori toys are simple and easily understandable, which helps children learn from the simple to the most complex. The natural look and feel of wooden toys fit perfectly with this approach.

Durability and Longevity

One of the most significant advantages of wooden Montessori toys is their durability.

Unlike plastic toys that often break or lose their appeal quickly, wooden toys can provide continuous learning and development for years. This not only saves money in the long run but also reduces waste. Furthermore, when wooden toys are made from high-quality materials like Birchwood, they are unlikely to splinter or break. This makes them a safe and long-lasting option for children to play with.

The Purpose of Montessori Toys

Montessori toys are designed with a specific purpose in mind – to aid in a child's development. They are not just meant to entertain but also to help children learn and grow.

This is why it's essential to choose toys that are made with high-quality materials and have a clear educational purpose. Wooden Montessori toys are perfect for this purpose as they are easy for children to hold and manipulate, which helps develop their fine motor skills. They also provide a tactile experience that is crucial for a child's sensory development.

The Importance of Independence

In Montessori education, independence is highly valued. By placing wooden toys on low shelves or in accessible cabinets, children can choose which toy they want to play with next. This not only encourages independence but also helps develop decision-making skills.


In conclusion, it's clear that Montessori toys made of wood are superior to ordinary toys in almost every respect.

They provide a safe and natural play experience, stimulate a child's senses, and aid in their development. They are also better for the environment and have a longer lifespan compared to plastic toys. As an expert in Montessori education, I highly recommend choosing wooden toys for your child's playtime.

Myron Burglin
Myron Burglin

Extreme bacon enthusiast. Unapologetic twitter enthusiast. Avid web scholar. General music geek. Hipster-friendly social media advocate. Freelance twitter trailblazer.

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