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10 Montessori Activities for 1-Year-Olds Kids

10 Montessori Activities for 1-Year-Olds Kids

Montessori activities for 1-year-olds should be as simple as possible and supervised. For games and activities to be truly beneficial, Montessori toys should have a clear purpose and be aimed at developing a particular skill or focused on a single concept. 

What skills need to be developed when a child turns one?

  • It's time to practice improving grasp and eye-hand coordination, and it's great to offer activities that help the child walk confidently and later run, climb, and move small objects from place to place. 
  • The child is already pronouncing the first syllables and words – this needs to be perfected by reading, listening, and singing simple songs, telling stories, and reading bedtime stories. 
  • The development of sensory organs is happening at a crazy pace, so it will be just wonderful if you choose sensory and DIY Montessori activities for 1-year-olds.
  •  It's time to move on to manageable, practical life activities: drinking from a glass, pouring a glass of water, and so on. 

Such activities will help the toddler develop sensory perception, get acquainted with the world and things around them, develop gross and fine motor skills, improve speech, and become independent and confident. Although it seems that at the age of one, the child is still very young, and there are not so many activities that suit them, there are lots of them available.

Climbing Activities

Indoor climbing toys, such as the Pikler Triangle, Scandinavian Trapeze, and Mini Tower Climber, open up a whole world of Montessori activities at home for 1-year-olds. Improving climbing skills helps children enhance their vestibular system, which in turn leads to improved coordination, balance, and gross motor skills. Moreover, home climbing structures are lower and safer than playground installations designed for older children. Furthermore, a home jungle gym allows children to play and have fun regardless of the weather outside—whether it's raining, hot, or cold, the game is available at any time without any obstacles. When the child gets tired, the Triangle can turn into a tent, and a pillow can be attached to the Montessori arch or balance board, turning this item into a rocker swing. And the main thing is that you don't have to think about how to keep your child busy constantly—they can already choose what interests them from the age of one.

Household Chores

While a one-year-old may not be able to do much yet, they will observe with genuine interest everything you do: cooking, setting the table, organizing shelves, or vacuuming. As toddlers grow older, they can actively participate in these activities: placing a plate on the table, fetching spoons from the drawer, peeling a banana, and so on. Naturally, some assistance is needed for a child to reach higher surfaces. Learning towers are an excellent solution for this stage. They are necessary in the kitchen, where you can cook together, in the bathroom, so the child can easily wash their hands, and in the nursery, to reach higher shelves with favorite toys, for example.

Of course, a toddler's involvement in household chores may create more mess, so be patient. Over time, things will get better, and the chaos surrounding such activities will decrease. Meanwhile, doing household chores together will become a useful habit—it's the perfect time to establish it.

    Sensory Play

    Create a sensory table with items of different textures, sizes, and sounds to engage your little one's senses. Sensory play further helps refine your child's nine senses, fostering their cognitive growth in a fun and interactive manner. So, use everyday items like flowers, grass, salt, sand, and rice to provide opportunities for your child to explore through touch, sound, smell, and taste (just remember to supervise them when they're tasting!). To avoid any potential spills, you can use sensory bins, which will ensure a mess-free and enjoyable experience for both you and your little one.

    Water Play

    Playing with water can be a lot of fun and helps kids learn and explore in many ways. You need nothing fancy, just a simple table, a clear container, or even a water-filled bowl. To make it more interesting, you can add some tools like cups, sponges, or whisks for them to play with. You can also use some toys or things you have at home, like a doll or balls, to make it more exciting.

    Finger Painting

    Finger painting is not just a messy playtime activity; it's a valuable learning experience for one-year-olds. As they dip their fingers into colorful paints and glide them across the paper, children engage their senses, enhancing their cognitive development. This tactile exploration helps them understand cause and effect as they observe how their movements create patterns and shapes on the canvas. Moreover, finger painting encourages self-expression and confidence-building, as toddlers delight in the freedom to create art in their unique way without the constraints of brushes or pens. It's a joyful experience that fosters creativity, fine motor skills, and a love for artistic expression from an early age.

    Help with laundry

    Household chores like laundry can be a fun way to help them improve their fine motor skills and concentration. You can make it a fun activity by inviting your child to help you sort the laundry into different piles based on color or type using a laundry basket. Your little one can also participate in activities like matching socks or folding towels, making the entire task both enjoyable and educational.

    Peeling Stickers

    Peeling stickers is a fantastic activity for honing your child's fine motor skills. You can gather a variety of stickers and encourage your child to peel them off one by one. To make it even more exciting, you can challenge them to match the stickers to specific shapes or colors. This simple activity is an excellent way to promote creativity and dexterity in children. Have fun!

    Matching Lids to Containers

    Help your little ones develop their fine motor skills – ask them to match lids to containers! The best thing about this activity is that you can easily set it up using items you already have at home, like empty plastic bottles or containers and their corresponding lids. At first, it might seem a bit challenging for your kids, but as they practice, they'll become pros in no time! You can even make it more attractive for them by introducing lids of various sizes and shapes. This activity promotes fine motor skills, helps with grasping abilities, and fosters shape and size recognition. 

    Smell and taste

    Looking for an interesting game for your kiddo? Try fruit sensory play!

    It's super easy - just gather a bunch of fruits and let your little one explore by smelling and tasting each one. You can even turn it into a game by challenging them to identify the different flavors! This interactive experience is a great way to boost sensory development while also fostering curiosity and learning about different fruits and flavors. Give it a shot – your child will love it!

    Tearing Paper

    Tearing paper can be a great way to help your child develop fine motor skills. Gather different types of paper with various colors and thicknesses and let your child tear them into pieces. This simple activity can help strengthen the muscles in their fingers and improve their coordination. And let’s be honest: one-year-olds adore tearing (that’s why toddlers’ books are made with cardboard.)


    These activities are great for developing skills like grasping objects, eye-hand coordination, walking confidently, sensory perception, and practical life activities. You can try all of them with your little one, and they'll love it!

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