8.29.2012

Montessori Madness: The Floor Bed

One of the ideas I like most about the Montessori child's room is the floor bed.   I love that you give the child the opportunity to explore her environment freely and that the child gets the sense that she is capable and able to do things on her own.  Yes, cribs are convenient for parents duing certain stages, but it seems to me that they are problematic as well, i.e. you cant lie in them with your child, it's a back breaker to move your baby in and out of the crib, your child will eventually learn to climb out of one and then you've got to transition to a real bed, etc.  But, I don't know anyone in real life who has used a floor bed, so when I was pregnant, while I loved the idea in theory, I shied away from it thinking that I would later come to regret it and have to get a crib anyway.  So we got a crib and I set up the rest of her nursery as close as I could to the Montessori ideal.

The other night I was going back and forth yet again about Juniper sleeping in her crib versus our bed, and I couldn't really get to a happy place regarding either.  The next morning I had a head slapping moment when it occurred to me that what might solve some of our problems would be to switch to the floor bed.
Juniper has, mostly, been falling asleep while we massage and wrap her leg while she's lying in our bed.  This was both good and bad.  Good because it seemed like wrapping was starting to be a sleep cue for her, and bad because I couldn't see how this would ever work with her sleeping in a crib.  Floor bed to the rescue! This way we can do the routine in her bed on the floor.  I think it also may solve the night issues as well because I won't have to haul her out of her crib to change and feed her, I can just do that in her bed too.
Basically, I've given myself the excuse to try this (maybe crazy) Montessori idea that I love in theory for real.  I reserve the right to put this experiment into the major parenting flop pile in a few months as well.
We talked a little about buying a twin futon, but since the room is so small, and we already shelled out for an organic crib mattress, we decided to just use that, and before Juniper's morning nap we'd moved the crib out. 
So far, the only drawback is that Juniper seems to really like it, and today she napped a little less than normal as a result.  
I think as she settles in and it becomes the norm this will be less of a problem, but maybe not.  We're keeping the crib for the foreseeable future in case this turns into a major disaster, but I'm really hoping that it works out.


P.S. Juniper only naps with a blanket, this is because we are always around watching her.  At night she wears a wool sleep sack over her jammies.  Also, right next to the bed is not the permanent or normal home of her toy arch!

1 comment:

  1. This is great! Our daughter is 8.5 months and so far has slept in a arms reach co sleeper up next to my side of the bed or in her crib in her room and I sleep in the spare full bed in by her but a few feet away. I'm not able to sleep well at all on the same sleeping surface as her but want to sleep near her still so I'm trying to decide on keeping her in her crib in her room and I sleep on a twin bed near her in the same room or put her crib mattress on the floor and put another mattress up next to it that I would sleep on. Any thoughts?

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