The materials or toys in this category were selected based on their educational properties. We use the term "Shelf Work" because these toys and activities meet the criteria to be on the shelves in a Montessori Toddler & Casa/Primary Prepared Environment.
The toys in this collection are hands-on learning materials with a specific purpose. They are made of natural materials (wherever possible), stimulate the senses and invite repetition. Repetition is an essential aspect of learning. It develops confidence and a growth mindset and leads to mastery of a new skill.
Dr. Maria Montessori found that children felt great satisfaction from working with their hands and completing a challenging task at their level so most of the materials you'll find in a Montessori classroom follow this philosophy.
Montessori materials are often organized in baskets and trays and placed on an easy-to-access Montessori shelf, where children can remove and replace activities independently.