My friend P from church is working on her Montessori certification, so she observes S for a couple of hours a week. I realize that the point is for her to watch S and note her behavior, growth, and interactions. Honestly, though, I think I get the most out of it because P brings all sorts of cool stuff for me to see. The Montessori literature, which discusses aspects of development that Parents magazine just doesn't cover, is especially cool, and some of the items she brings are so WICKED AWESOME. Makes me want to be Italian if I'm being honest. The coolest thing she brought today was a topponcino. It's basically a flat pillow. When she took it out, I thought it was just a "tummy time" mat. Not so. Apparently it's some 19th century Italian deal, and it's a brilliantly simple concept. The pillow is large enough that a newborn can easily rest upon it, and the pillow will "fill" an adult's arms, making holding more comfortable for both adult and baby. It also makes it easier to transition a sleeping baby from being held to lying down. (Genius.) The baby will also grow accustomed to her own smell on the topponcino, so she won't be fussy when strange people hold her. Why on earth has this never caught on in America? Especially since it could become a "tummy time" mat when the baby outgrows being held cradle-style. It's a two-fer.
She also had a Gobbi mobile with her today, and I think I'm going to try to make one for S. It was really neat, but I can't seem to find a reference to it online. Trust me, it was neat.
As far as the developmental stuff, P has mostly shown me stuff that focuses on how a baby's motor skills develop, specifically in her hands. How a baby's grasp changes over time. Stuff like that. It's so super-cool. The even cooler part? It makes me watch S in a different way. Meaning I do more than stare at her and think how pretty she is. (Really, though, she is pretty.) I look at her and actually notice how she is changing...the new things she can do. I noticed the other night that she is really starting to "sprawl." She fell asleep with her arms stretched as wide apart as they could get. That's a new thing. I suppose that newborn tendency to keep her arms tucked in is all but gone. I am so loving being a mom. Can you tell?
I have to go to the grocery.