One hundred years ago, María Montessori developed a pedagogical approach that went beyond the classroom. It’s all about children learning through experience. The Italian educator argued that everything in the child’s environment can act as a teacher and that’s why the surroundings in which their development takes place must be adequate and adapt to each age.

This philosophy, in which architecture and design are essential elements for stimulating the minds of children, has become more valued due to the COVID-19 crisis. Today we will take a look at some designs inspired by the Montessori method.

When preschools is a forest

L&M Design has designed a children’s garden in line with the Montessori method on the Chinese island of Xiamen. It consists of three floors where columns and beams look like trees and bridges and the stairs lead to “treehouses” that act as peaceful refuges where children can read or draw.

Posted by L&M Design LAB on Wednesday, March 4, 2020

The library – just one big game

Is this a library or just one giant game?  Muxin Studio designed the Sissi’s Wonderland library in Shanghai to encourage children to explore and play in a light and airy space that stimulates their creativity.  Designed using safe materials and without any sharp edges or corners, the little ones are free to read, discover, and create their own experiences.

https://www.instagram.com/p/BxYuOU3B6wJ/

The bedroom, their refuge

At home, a child’s bedroom is key.  How can we make sure it encourages learning? The most important thing is opting for simplicity. Light colours, natural materials, kid-sized furniture, and a space where they can connect to nature are a few of the essentials.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B0xe0j_ADeq/

Furniture that encourages autonomy

Furniture should adapt to the child, not the other way around. For example, beds at floor level, mirrors that help them discover themselves, and a space for reading to awaken their interest in books are all easily accessible and thus foster autonomy.

https://www.instagram.com/p/B9JLAaUFJX4/

Games to stimulate their imagination

Toys can’t be left out of Montessori-inspired design. Are they different to other toys? Yes, they are. Forget about plastic because these toys are made from natural materials, especially wood. There are no lights, no sounds, no pre-programmed movements. They are artisanal, environmentally-friendly, and safe pieces that invite children to discover a whole world of fun and that stimulate their imagination.

https://www.instagram.com/p/CCInkqnqJ5o/