Best Toys for Your 3-Year-Olds - Discovering the Montessori Method

When your child turns three, they become much more curious, and everything seems like an adventure to them. Not to mention the emotional rollercoaster they experience with each new challenge they face. But, most of all, their imagination and creativity skyrocket.

So, in the center of this curiosity, play becomes a powerful tool for learning. That’s why channeling all that energy into purposeful playtime seems like a good idea. And what better way to do so than with a little help from the Montessori method- an approach that lets kids learn through play?

Little blonde girl reading a children's book in a classroom.

Let’s explore the best toys for 3-year-olds and discover what Montessori is all about!

What is the Montessori Method of Learning?

The Montessori method, named after Dr. Maria Montessori, is a special way of teaching in which kids learn at their own speed. They can also choose what they want to learn with the help of teachers. However, teachers are only there to guide, share knowledge, and track how the child is doing, not to engage with children every minute or give lectures.

The primary focus is helping kids do things independently and meeting their early childhood needs. This method doesn't just cover learning facts; it also touches every part of a child's growth, like thinking, feeling, socializing, and moving around.

Boy playing with a wooden alphabet board and colorful wooden letters.

Montessori allows children to explore and find what makes them learn the best. For some, it’s figuring out how to solve puzzles, while other kids might be good at gardening. The idea is the same: every child has its own pace and path, and Montessori nurtures that.

This helps them become independent, confident learners, leading to many good things in their development. Choosing the Montessori way means giving kids a way to discover and fall in love with learning from the very start.

Do Montessori Toys Make a Difference?

Yes, Montessori toys make a difference by focusing on independent thinking, sensory development, and attention while being durable and environmentally friendly.

Imagine toys that don't just keep your child busy but also help them think for themselves. Montessori toys do just that. They encourage kids to explore and practice sharp thinking and problem-solving skills.

But it's not just about the brain. These toys also tap into your child's senses with different textures and shapes. And on top of that, they're perfect for helping your child concentrate and focus.

Also, some new Montessori toy trends include creative stuff like art materials and tricky puzzles, but these are more focused on kindergarteners.

Two boys playing with a wooden xylophone in a Montessori classroom.

What Is the Difference Between Montessori Toys and Regular Toys?

Montessori toys and regular toys may both be designed for play, but their purposes and features set them apart. Let’s see that up close:

  • Purpose of play: Montessori toys are made to stimulate learning, encourage independent exploration, and promote skill development. Regular toys are only for entertainment and passing the time.

  • Material and construction: Montessori materials are wood, fabric, glass, metal, cotton, and other natural materials. Regular toys are usually made from synthetic materials.

  • Open-ended play: Open-ended play is one of the key aspects of the Montessori method, allowing children to use their creativity and imagination. On the contrary, regular toys come with specific functions or scenarios, limiting children’s imaginative play.

  • Skill development: Montessori toys are designed to enhance specific skills such as problem-solving and sensory exploration. However, regular toys focus only on enjoyment.

Benefits of Montessori Toys for 3-Year-Olds

Montessori toys are designed in a way to benefit your child’s learning progress. So, the next time your child engages in interactive play with Montessori toys, they actually work on the following:

  • Cognitive Development: These toys encourage hands-on exploration and allow your children to focus on problem-solving skills. For example, when your kid solves puzzles, they constantly think about their next move while their hands execute that thought. It’s a simple practice.

  • Motor skill development: While playing with toys that include sorting activities, children are actually practicing fine motor skills. Every piece put in the right place is a practice for small hands. 

Little boy playing with green Montessori pegs.

  • Social and emotional intelligence: Montessori is about cooperative play. So, many Montessori toys are designed for group activities. Your kid can learn a lot in a group setting.

  • Independence: Montessori toys allow children to explore and play autonomously. Always put toys within your children’s reach, so they can independently choose their next toy to play with.

  • Exploration: Montessori supports curiosity-driven learning, making children explore everything around them.

Best Montessori Toys for Your 3-Year-Olds - Our Pick

Picking the Montessori toys for 3 year olds matters. That’s why we made a special selection of Montessori toys that are perfect for little bundles of energy. Let’s discuss them:

1. Montessori Wooden Switch Board

Montessori Wooden Switch Board.

This wooden toy might look like it's meant for grown-ups, but trust us, your toddler is going to be over the moon about it! Kids have this knack for poking around with things they're not supposed to, right? Well, here's a genius solution - give them a 100% safe, touch-and-explore-friendly Montessori Wooden Switch Board.

With all the switches, buttons, keys, and cables, the playtime is going to last for quite some time. All the good stuff your little one loves, minus the screens. With eight different switches, your child can light up this board and enjoy colorful responses.

Some benefits:

  • Boosts fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination.
  • Offers purposeful play without a screen in sight.
  • Teaches children about real things that can help them later in life.
  • Enhances attention span and focus.

So, the next time your child reaches for your laptop, remote control, or car keys, remember that this toy can help. 

2. Montessori Cooking Tools

Montessori Cooking Tools.

Who’s up for a fun cooking lesson? Curious 3-year-olds wouldn’t miss this no matter what. Whether it's shaping the baking dough or simply making a pizza, these Montessori Cooking Tools are perfect for creating long-lasting memories with your little chef.

Most importantly, these tools are designed with your child in mind - no sharp edges here. They can only cut through the softest groceries, and for an extra layer of safety, we’ve added safety gloves. But please, always keep an eye on your little one while they're in action.

Most noticeable benefits:

  • Practice fine motor skills and hand-eye coordination but in a kitchen style.
  • No screens in sight, only purposeful play.
  • Your kid is learning about practical life skills.
  • Builds independence and confidence.

We understand that kids want to help in the kitchen, but out of safety, we usually don’t allow them. Well, no more. Get this set and allow your child to see how fun cooking is, especially with a loving parent or caregiver right next to their side. 

3. Montessori Wooden Tetris

Montessori Wooden Tetris.

Having issues with your child’s excessive screen time? Well, there’s a solution - the Montessori Wooden Tetris. This is a simple and fun game that grabs your child's attention and holds it for a long period of time.

Kids love arranging things, and Tetris comes in perfectly here. On top of that, as they’re learning how to arrange these pieces, they’ll also apply the same logic for arranging toys and stuff in their room. So, this is a win-win situation.


  • Builds patience, spatial awareness, and logical thinking.
  • Screens are left in another room while children play with this toy.
  • Playtime is fun and never-ending.
  • Boosts memory and logic while also developing attention span and intuition.

Best of all, this is not just a one-day toy as children find it interesting even after they’re ‘’done’’ with it. 


Well, there you have it. Three-year-olds are a bundle of energy ready to explore the whole world. That’s why we need to steer them in the right direction, and what better way to do so than Montessori?

Keep them engaged in purposeful play that lasts for hours without screens. Get your favorite toy right away.

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