Date of Award


Document Type

Action Research Project

Degree Name

Master of Arts in Education


Education, Montessori

First Advisor

Amanda Perna


Montessori Early Childhood


The purpose of this study was to determine the effects that daily diffusion of lavender oil and adult led breathing exercises would have on the daytime nap in a Montessori early childhood classroom. Specifically, the study targeted the length of time needed for each child to fall asleep, in addition to independence in the children themselves. There were 14 participants, ages 3 to 5 years old, in an early childhood Montessori classroom. The researcher diffused lavender essential oil each day during the nap period, and led the participants in one-minute breathing exercises at the beginning of nap. The researcher collected data by recording the time that each child fell asleep, tallying the number of children requiring adult contact, recording any actions observed by children before falling asleep, and reflecting in a journal. The study revealed that children did become more independent over the course of the intervention, but sleep latency did not decline consistently. The data suggests that further research into effective techniques for reducing sleep latency is needed in the early childhood field.