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2 min read

Nesting activities are such a simple activity to offer young children - with so many great benefits:
  • Development of logical thinking, problem-solving, and spatial awareness
  • Exploration of foundational math concepts, such as size and order
  • Great for strengthening the hand, fine motor skills, and hand-eye coordination
And you can definitely find nesting materials around your home. No need to buy anything!

What Are Nesting Activities?

Nesting materials are sets of objects that fit inside one another.

For example cups, bowls, tupperware containers, hollow blocks, or measuring cups.

The Montessori material, Egg Cup, is also one of the first items designed to introduce the nesting, offered as early as 6 months.

When Do Children Show An Interest in Nesting?

Children are most interested in nesting from 9 to 24 months.

The great thing about nesting activities is that they can be tailored to suit different age groups and abilities.

A young child can nest 2-3 objects while a preschooler child can nest 10-15+ objects at a time.

Children learn best when they are building off of previous skills (known in education as scaffolding) and nesting activities are perfect for this.

Nesting activities tend to stay on in the Montessori infant and toddler classroom shelves all year round, as guides can just keep extending them - i.e. switching up the materials or increasing the quantity.

And for children over two, that have moved past an interest in nesting, they can then use the same materials (blocks and bowls) for building and stacking activities. No need to give them away!

If Your Child Isn't Showing Interest in Nesting...

If your child is under three and not showing any interest in nesting, the activities might be too hard OR too easy.

For younger children, start with just a few objects to nest, 2 or 3. Round containers are also easier to nest than square ones so start with bowls/cups, rather than blocks.

For children closer to 3 that need more of a challenge, offer a larger stack of items to nest, 10+.

You can also offer blocks instead of cups, like these: