Montessori Bedroom

We did it friends! We made the big jump to switch Sophie (age 14 months) to a Montessori inspired room.Call us crazy, but we’re super excited!

montessori

This past weekend we took out Sophie’s crib so there would be no turning back! It’s not very conventional to move a child of this age to a big kid bed but we think it’s best for Sophie. It will help aid her in being able to lay down when she’s tired or read a book if she wakes up at 6a (before Mommy).

dresser

Her dresser has stayed pretty much the same from the start. Her drawers are still organized as they were in her nursery post. Her bags and sweatshirt are at easy access with all the necessary diaper changing supplies on top of the dresser. The white cord hanging down in the corner is her camera. We attached the dresser to the wall and covered the outlet so she won’t be tempted to mess with the plugs.

reading-nook

Sophie has a reading nook by her window. Over time I’m sure there will be pillows and blankets and art in this area but for now she likes sitting in this area and looking at her books with Bear. Also, that animal sorting bus in the lower corner is her favorite toy of all time. It’s a hand me down from her niece and I haven’t found it anywhere online, but if you’re looking for a toy for your little one, there are similar toys online.

montessori-bed

Sophie’s new bed is the Kura reversible bed from IKEA. There are so many fun ways to customize this bed. We’re thinking of making it more cozy with some kind of top and curtains. We put a temporary body pillow along the wall to make her more comfortable. She’s not a fan of blankets which is why her bedding is just a fitted sheet. With her bed being on the floor, when I see her rubbing her eyes or yawning, I can say ‘do you want to take a nap with Elmer (her elephant)?’ and she’ll walk into her room and lay down with him.

book-case

Sophie’s bookcase is minimal with some of her favorite toys and books. I didn’t put many books on the shelves, knowing that for now, I’ll be putting everything back on the shelves when she empties them. We wanted to have learning toys on her shelf that can grow with her as she learns how to play with them better. The Minnie on the top shelf is her sound machine for naps and the Winnie the Pooh is my old lamp/music box from when I was little. Her closet has the rest of her library, more toys and her hamper. Everything is attached to the wall or latched shut so she can’t hurt herself while playing in her room.

lexi-room
We’ve all loved the new setup of Sophie’s room. We’ve been a bit sleep deprived while she’s getting the hang of actually laying in her bed throughout the night time, but we’re only on the second day.

When did you move your toddler to their big kid bed? How was the transition? Any tips on keeping them in the bed but not blocking their access to get up when they want? Wish us luck over these next couple weeks! We’ll be going back and forth between bed, crib and pack and plays with traveling for the holidays! Why not add one more thing on top of the craziness that is Christmas?!

44 thoughts on “Montessori Bedroom

  1. I didn’t move J to a toddler bed til he was 3. It was pretty much impossible to keep him in bed but we did use a baby gate to block his door so he couldn’t wander the house at night. (Obviously once you start nighttime potty training you can’t do that, though.) There were many nights that he ended up sleeping on the floor instead of his bed. Oh well! My theory is that my job is done once they’ve been read to and the lights are out, except in an emergency of course. J is a bit of a night owl so there are many nights when he stays up late singing, talking to himself, or playing after I put him to bed.
    Sarah @ Beauty School Dropout recently posted…An open house, a parade, a case of the 4-year-old gimmesMy Profile

    1. Potty training WOULD throw a wrench in things! We close Soph’s door because it’s always been closed. We have a camera in her room so we can look at her if she’s crying to see if she needs us or if it’s not a real cry. She’s done an awesome job this week. She’s now had two days/nights of sleeping in her bed for naps and throughout the night. This morning was her first time playing with her toys when she woke up. 🙂

    1. Thanks Steph! We really like how it turned out and, more importantly, she seems to too! It’s similar enough to how it used to look that it still feels like her room, but there’s new fun things to play with!

  2. So what makes this room Montessori? Her little space is adorable and it’s great she has access to all of her favorite things and can lie down herself. Let me say, I’m totally in love with this bed that can be so many different things. I’m keeping it in mind!!!!!! As for switching to a toddler bed, you’re definitely doing it sooner than we did. But we had a raised bed, so that makes a different. Her bed on the floor is real nice. We made the switch a little sooner to 2 yrs old (J). He was good about staying in his room all night, crying in his room when he wanted us instead. Gosh, it wasn’t until he was 2.5 that he started coming to our room in the middle of the night. That lasted a year, wayyyy too long. So I don’t have any tips on keeping the kid in the room. Seems you’ve got plenty to distract her. Good luck!
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    1. It’s a Montessori inspired room really. There might be things that aren’t perfectly to their rules. What makes it Montessori in our eyes is the independence factor. Bed on the floor and only books and learning toys for when she’s paying. We keep her door closed so she can’t come to our room but she knocks on her door (without crying) when she wants out and it’s always because of a #2! She’s real good about going to sleep without fuss (luckily.)

    1. Thank you Carla 🙂 It’s an IKEA KURA bunk bed. You can add rails and a mattress to the top area and there are ladder rails as well. You can also flip it over so the bed is off the ground.

  3. We transitioned my son into his big boy bed at just over a year when he learned how to walk and have a similar set up in his room (without the dresser). It was a challenge at first and he did spend a few nights sleeping on the floor next to the door, but he is now 18 months. He will tell us when he is tired and goes right to sleep, gets up and plays quietly when he wakes. And when he is done playing he simply knocks on the door to be let out. (We do still have to remind him that we pick up our toys when we are done with them, and Mommy still helps with that.) I think you guys did a great job! Totally not too early. It looks awesome.

    1. That’s so great!! Sophie’s now 2 and we’ve flipped her bed upside down so it’s off the ground about 6-7 inches. She likes it so much and I think having her new ‘big girl bed’ was easy to transition into because it was the same exact bed flipped over! She thought that was mind blowing!

  4. I think it is great you took the leap of faith to allow your Sophia more freedom. We took our daughter’s (also Sophia) crib out when she was 9 months old. She loves having her bed where she can get in and out. Everything in her room is child proof, so really if she wants to get out of bed that is up to her. We’ve discovered that at night she generally waits for us because it is dark and she cuddles with her bear. Only once has she crawled out, and she just wanted to get to her blocks, she played very contentedly till I peeked in. With the monitor on too we’re able to keep tabs.

    1. It’s so sweet to have this type of set up. It lets us encourage them to play on their own and make decisions on when they’re tired or ready to get up!

  5. Omg! I love this! What type of stacking toys are they? I love the egg stacking toys and the others on the book shelf? The green and blue toy?

    1. I now actually have a lot fewer toys. There’s only one toy on each shelf and the books are on a different shelf attached to her bed. It is too difficult to put the books back when they’re standing up that way. Our new shelf is a narrow shelf she can put the books up with the cover facing her. The green and blue toy is a shape sorter found here http://amzn.to/1QDfVhk and the egg stacking toy is http://amzn.to/1JUfX5e. 🙂

  6. We moved our boys out of the cot once they began climbing out whoch for both was 18 months. At sleep times we gave them 3 go’s at sleeping in their bed without getting out after three they would be placed back in the cot. Took both boys 4-5 days to decide they preferred the bed to the cot 🙂

    1. Yea, kids that young are very good at learning after a very short amount of time! I’m so glad we moved her to a bed very young because she takes much longer with lessons now that she’s 2.5!

    1. We have very few toys in her room. She now has one toy in each compartment and 4-5 books that we rotate out for bed time. She also has a set of hooks on the wall that has a tutu, necklace and her backpack. She also has a tower of stuffed animals (from IKEA) that we can help get all her stuffed animals out if she wants them out for movie night or a slumber party. We have most of her toys in the basement but still in compartments like this one in her bedroom. She also has a slide, mini trampoline and mat to tumble to get out energy during the winter. She also has a bowl of dinosaurs, a board game and books in the family room and can ask to play with play-doh or coloring which I have where she can’t reach.

  7. I love this room. I’m starting to create a “toddler” room for my now 10 month old now. I’ve never bought anything from ikea…. are those shelves fairly strong? Obviously it might be wise to secure them to the wall, but can they support weight? Like any other little one, Mr. A loves to pull up on things!!!

    1. We LOVE these shelves. We have several sizes and I’m actually going to buy another just like hers but white for my craft room. They are very sturdy and they come with straps to anchor them to the wall. IKEA will give you anchoring straps even if you’re not purchasing furniture because they want to make sure all furniture is safe for little ones.

  8. Great post Shelley, thank you! My daughter is almost 14 months and I figured moving her into a bed would be something to think about later – but upon reading your article I can see how a set up like this could encourage independence at an earlier age (which I think would totally suit my little miss!!)

    1. Switching Soph to her floor bed at that age was one of our favorite decisions with her. I’m sure kids will react to a floor bed differently but Sophie loved it after a week – a week 1/2. She would sleep on the floor outside her door some nights but eventually learned to get into her bed. It also taught her how to put her blanket on earlier. She’s 2 now and we’ve flipped the bed over so it’s about 6 inches from the floor and she loves it as well. 🙂

  9. Hi Shelly! I found this post while perusing the great and almighty Pinterest looking for Montessori style bedroom ideas. My little is currently 11 months and the day care she attends uses Montessori and she has done very well there. We will be moving in the next couple months at which point she will have her own room which is why I’m looking for ideas. By that time she will be 14 months, do you think with the move and being that young that the floor bed would be a good idea to start or should I wait? And if I do start, how do I start? I realize you’re not a professional and that you posted this a couple years ago, but any suggestions would be great. Thank you in advance!

    1. Hi Beth! I can only speak for my daughter and her sleeping habits but she transitioned very smoothly. Kids can often get used to routine in 7 days as long as you don’t sway. Maybe new room means new bed? Do it all at once? You could start out by using her current mattress on the floor so it smells like her sheets OR switch to her new bed now so when you move it will be her same bed that she’s used to. With Soph she slept on the floor in front of her door for a week straight. Each night she got a little closer to her bed until she was finally laying on it (we could see her with our monitor). It was sad to see her laying on the floor but we just made sure the temp was a bit warmer since she didn’t have a blanket on. Let me know how everything works out!

  10. Maybe this is a silly question (or maybe my twins are just demons…), but I am very confused as to the ages I see mentioned here. My boys are almost 15 months old and I feel that it would be disastrous to give them beds they could get out of. They would climb shelves, open their closets and pull things down on themselves, open their bedroom door and climb living room furniture, make it all the way to the bathroom and kitchen… in short, they would kill each other or themselves. Am I missing something? Thanks!

    1. Hi Jen! Two things prevented my daughter from killing herself when we switched to her floor bed at age 14 months. 1. Every piece of furniture was strapped to the walls and her drawers had those plastic locks on the inside so she couldn’t pull them out to climb them. 2. She wasn’t tall enough to open her door or her closet door so she couldn’t get out of her room. She was free to take her toys off her shelves but she never played with them unless we were in there. They’d been in there since she was born so she had no interest in them resulting in no messes for us to pick up. A possible 3. is she didn’t have a twin to feed off of in getting into trouble. 😉 You could put the plastic covers on their doorknob so they can’t get out and make sure the furniture is secured. This might be an easier transition period than when they’re toddlers and have more melt-downs and can get into even more trouble.

      1. Thank you. This explains things. My boys are freakishly tall and so, SO naughty (and yes, they do play off of each other’s naughtiness). We do live in an apartment, so there are some things we simply can’t change (ie: door locks) and there are limits to what we can do to the walls. That also affects how much of their stuff needs to be stored in their room because it doesn’t fit in other places. Thanks for the explanations and suggestions!

    2. We let our daughter out of her crib at 6 mos and has never been contained since. The entire upper floor is childproof and she is able to get up, come into our room during night for comfort, or play with her puzzles. We have been consistent in letting her safely explore and know natural consequences of pulling things down and leaving messes. We felt it was important to parent her the same at night as we do during the day. Every kid has their own personality and exuberance in their work. She is not one to be contained and we had to find a way to help her do it for herself. I think if you trusted that in time they would adapt and learn night routine is different from day routine they might surprise you. Best of luck and if you need any reference the Montessori Today books are very helpful.

      1. Thank you Sasha 🙂 I’ve checked out one of the Montessori Today books from the library but got it at a bad time because I only got 1/2 way before I returned it.

  11. Beautiful and practical! I was always interested in a Montessori floor bed, but it wasn’t practical for our living space and family needs until a bit later. We transitioned my son to a floor bed just before age 2 – really, he transitioned himself (refused one night out of the blue to sleep in the crib). From then it was a mattress on the floor, then inside a teepee, and then onto a regular twin sized bed a few months later. When we listen to their needs (as well as to ours!), wonderful things can happen! Thanks for sharing your experience and beautiful room – I love the bed!
    – Ayelet from Strength In Words

    1. I’m sorry it didn’t work out for your space. Now that my daughter is to the point where most of her friends are transitioning from crib to toddler bed I’m hearing how much of a struggle it is. I’m so glad we put her on the floor bed so early.

  12. My 18 month old is still in a crib. Not sure it’s the right thing for her to have a big girl bed yet, but when the time comes, do I need a different kind of mattress to do this kind of set up? I have a traditional crib mattress.

    1. There are a lot of thoughts on how to do a floor bed. Some environments with a lot of humidity have a problem with mold if they put a mattress directly on the floor. This bed from IKEA has slats you can use for the top bunk if you make a bunk bed out of it so we laid those down under the mattress. I don’t think the size of the mattress matters until the child gets bigger. I would check out some Montessori forums on Facebook or websites that talk about floor beds if you’re concerned about the size of the mattress.

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