The Montessori Toddler: A Parent's Guide to Raising a Curious and Responsible Human Being

illus. by Hyoko Imai. 256p. illus. Workman. Mar. 2019. pap. $19.95. ISBN 9781523506897.
Toddlers are a misunderstood population, according to Montessori teacher and blogger Davies (The Montessori Notebook), who facilitates online workshops for raising responsible, curious children, modeled after the work of Italian physician and educator Maria Montessori (1870–1952). Montessori posited that education, not medicine, was the answer to improving the health of children with emotional and mental disabilities and went on to develop successful schools that have produced graduates such as Jeff Bezos and Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis. Davies lays out the basic principles of Montessori child-centered learning, in which students work at their own pace within a prepared environment using hands-on concrete materials. Alongside photographs and Imai's charming illustrations are ideas for setting up a learning-friendly environment and addressing self-care for adults as well as daily care for toddlers.
VERDICT With every page chock-full of plans for how to make one's home a haven for a youngster's intellectual and emotional growth, this valuable manual fills a gap on a topic not as frequently addressed in the literature on toddler development.Julia M. Reffner, Richmond, VA

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