The Toddler Montessori environment is designed to meet the characteristic core needs of the young child from 16 to 36 months of age. The focus is on the child’s need for a sense of order, escalated capacity to absorb language, and the zeal to become independent.
Our teachers work on instilling good habits, use precise and concise language to drive messages home, constantly encourage your child to express needs and wants with words, and gently guide your child to do things for themselves throughout the day.
One of the biggest goals in the toddler environment is to build and enhance your child’s sense of independence. Practical Life work materials are set up to show your child how to use a spoon, how to pour liquids, how to dress themselves, how to wipe tables/floors, how to sweep, how to water plants and so on and so forth. All tasks are broken down into manageable smaller steps that are repeated till mastery is achieved.
Activities such as jumping, running, using the balance beam and other equipment really help build their gross motor skills. The work materials on the shelves help improve manual dexterity and eye-hand coordination that enhance a toddler’s capacity to care for themselves and their environments. “I can do it” is a toddler’s mantra, which leads to their ability to play independently and becoming increasingly self-sufficient.
Toddlers are at the stage where their brains are primed for language acquisition. We take complete advantage of that stage of development and maximize their benefits through phonemic awareness games, object classification, engaging conversations, reading, poems and songs.
When toddlers are able to increasingly express their needs through words, they gain more control of their emotions, leading to less tantrums and a more delightful relationship between the child and others in their environment.
Grace and Courtesy is a fundamental part of our curriculum and daily routine. Teachers model desired behaviors and gently guide the toddlers towards acceptable forms of conduct. An understanding of personal space, empathy for friend’s distress, putting on hold their wants as the teacher addresses another friend’s needs are all components of the daily grace and courtesy routine.
This practice greatly helps build a strong foundation for developing sound social skills based on empathy and mutual respect.
Our teacher child ratio in the young toddler environment, where children are 16 to 24 months of age, is 1:5. Our teacher child ratio in the older toddler environment, where children are 24 to 36 months of age, is 1:8. We provide consistency by having the same teachers work with your child throughout the day on a schedule.
Toilet training is a part of the curriculum of the older toddler environment (ages 24 to 36 months). Teachers and parents partner together to assess the readiness of each child to transition to being diaper-free. The process will always begin at home over a long weekend or break. Consistency is key as the child gets used to not wearing diapers and using the toilet. Complete independence in toileting is key to move up to the Primary Program.