This unique classroom environment is beautifully designed to appeal to the child's natural curiosity and meet the diverse and special developmental needs of children aged 18 months to three years. Furniture is custom-sized to allow for maximum exploration and development of the senses. This program operates school year only, five days per week from 8:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. Classroom work includes sensorial, math and language activities. As the child grows in all developmental areas, the activities in the classroom change to meet their needs. Also included in the daily schedule is gym and outdoor play as well as creative movement and music. Teacher to Student ratio in this program is 1:4.
Toddler Montessori Environment/Philosophy
The toddler environment is prepared to meet the toddler's growing emotional and cognitive abilities. The classroom is beautifully designed to appeal to the child's curiosity. Furniture is custom-sized to allow for maximum exploration and development of the senses.
Classroom exercises include sensorial work and instruction in math and language. As the child grows emotionally, physically and intellectually, the activities in the classroom continue to change to meet his/her needs.
In many instances, this is the first experience the child has of being away from his/her caretaker. Waiting one's turn, sharing, and patience are important lessons that each child learns.
The Montessori teacher offers the tenderness, warmth and patience so essential at this age. An emphasis on the importance of a peaceful environment, with the necessary nurturing and caring, is a characteristic of this program.
Practical Life exercises use familiar objects drawn from experiences in the home. Children learn to care for the environment with activities such as sweeping and cleaning off the tables. Caring for oneself includes managing a coat, washing hands and taking off and putting on shoes. Food preparation is explored through pouring and spooning activities, washing various objects, and clearing one's place setting.
The child discovers the world around him through the use of his senses. In the Montessori method, sensorial activities help the child explore the world through all five senses. Activities include bead stringing, pouring water, collaging art projects, transfer work with fingers and tweezers, working on puzzles, comparing smooth and rough objects of different sizes, playing in water and with play dough and exploring different smells all enhance the child's senses.
Language activities in the Toddler Program build on the foundation established in the first two years of life. Lots of singing, finger plays, stories and "conversation time" make language learning fun. The class participates in a specialized "movement and music" program each week. The toddler environment also includes plenty of labeling, sorting, and ordering.
Toddlers need a "hands on" environment for learning concrete math concepts. Many learning opportunities for manipulating objects help the child begin to understand number concepts, both quantity and symbol. A variety of materials are available for counting, matching and sorting activities.
Science activities vary with the seasons and include identifying plants and animals by matching pictures, looking at related books and taking nature walks.
Art activities are always available and open ended and focused on the process rather than the product.
Social development is encouraged through planned group activities such as circle time, snack time, food tasting, and story time.
Large motor development includes playground time, walks, and use of the gym where children can climb, run, play with balls, and ride tricycles.
Fine motor skills are explored through pouring, using tweezers, and other transfer work, as well as cutting and drawing.