Nido Program for Infants

 Italian meaning  nest

Ages 8 weeks to 15 months

The Montessori infant environment at NMS is carefully prepared to allow for freedom of movement, development of independence, language and will. You will find a nurturing “homelike” environment that is both peaceful and engaging. The infant guides are observers of your child’s development and become an extension of your family sharing their observations and allowing for a routine or schedule that follows your infants natural sleep and feeding patterns.

The studies which have been made of early infancy leave no room for doubt: the first two years are important forever, because in that period, one passes from being nothing into being something. 

– Dr. Maria Montessori

Education must begin

at birth.   – Dr. Maria Montessori

Nido Program Overview

Welcome to the Newburyport Montessori School Nido Program for infants.  We are very excited to be a nurturing part of your child’s growth and development.  Below is an overview of what you can expect from our philosophy, and information on what you will need to provide for your child.

“The child has a different relation to his environment from ours… the child absorbs it.  The things he sees are not just remembered; they form part of his soul.  He incarnates in himself all in the world about him that his eyes see, and his ears hear.”      ~ Maria Montessori


All parent/teacher communication occurs through the Brightwheel app.  Teachers will be alerted immediately of your communication and will respond in kind.  Through the Brightwheel app you will be apprised of your child’s daily activities.  You will also be updated throughout the day of your child’s eating, sleeping and diapering experiences.

Arrival/Departure Policy

Attachment and separation are part of a process children must undergo from birth in order to become an individual: separate and be independent within the environment.

Children from birth work towards independence and constructing themselves.  In order to best assist your child towards being capable and building self esteem, we must provide a loving and supportive base for attachment.  It is from this strong base they can reach into the world and detach to explore their environment. The more confident you are in leaving, the more confident your child will feel in being left.


Bottle-feeding should be introduced at home prior to the start of the program.  We have plenty of freezer and refrigeration storage space for breast milk and dry storage for formula.  Mothers are certainly welcome to come in and nurse their babies at any time.  We have created a cozy, quiet space just for this purpose.

For children who have started solid food, you will bring in their food daily in a labeled lunch box container.  This lunch box may contain jars or pouches of baby food, teething wafers and any finger food that you would like them to have.  All finger foods will need to be appropriately cut up into a small and safe size.

Freedom of Movement and Natural Development

Our prepared environment is set up so that children can move freely without restriction.  Our focus is on human interaction and natural simple materials for optimum development.

Gross motor development is usually seen as when an infant reaches a milestone such as sitting, standing, walking etc.  Allowing a child to move on its own will enhance the natural development and variety of its movements and over all development.  Our approach is to allow infants to do what they can, and that a child who is allowed to move freely develops a strong body and sense of balance, good body image, spatial relations, and a sense of balance.

“Watching a child makes it obvious that the development of his mind comes through his movements.”    ~ Maria Montessori 

What to Bring

Families provide the following:

  • 4 full changes of clothes
  • 4 Sleep sacks, if your child uses them
  • Bibs
  • Burping cloths, if used at home
  • A full package of diapers (or cloth diaper equivalent)
  • A full package of wipes
  • A pacifier, if your child uses one
  • Bottles
  • Sippy Cup
  • Breast milk or formula
  • Daily food, if your child is on solid food
  • Utensils for any solid food

Every single item must be labeled—every sock, every bottle, every spoon, etc.—either with a sharpie or pre-made labels.

For your convenience, you may want to order pre-printed labels.  Here’s the website for Oliver’s Labels:

NMS provides crib sheets that are washed onsite weekly, or more often if needed.

What should stay at home

Blankets, sheets, toys

The Nido Room