Pleasant Hill
image image
MENU     

Toddler Program

THE TODDLER PROGRAM

“A child in his earliest years, when he is only two or a little more is capable of tremendous achievements simply through his unconscious power of absorption though he is himself still immobile.“

The Discovery of the Child, Dr. Maria Montessori

two toddlers playing toysEmpire Montessori Preschool looks at a child between ages 2 years old through 3 years old as a toddler. It is a period characterized by the need to explore everything and to move and develop large motor coordination and strength. We believe there is a huge expansion into language during this stage. The toddler develops a capacity to create symbols, images, and concepts and becomes aware of himself/herself as a separate and independent person. The mastering of toilet training is a focal point at this age. The staff to child ratio is 1:8.

PHILOSOPHY

Dr. Maria Montessori recognized the sensitivities of the toddler in the areas of independence, order, movement, and language as the key elements in the child’s growth and development during the toddler period.

For many toddlers, this is their first experience in an environment other than home. Care is given to assist the young child and parent in handling separation and in making this a positive and healthy experience.

The Montessori toddler classroom will make up most of Practical Life materials, with many “pre-Montessori” materials that are typically used with this age group even in non-Montessori settings (puzzles, stringing beads, etc.) Cultural lessons are generally included in the language part of the classroom; this would include learning about weather, the calendar, and basic names of objects in the classroom and in nature.

The furniture and materials are custom-sized to allow for the maximum exploration and development of the senses. The environment is designed and modified as the child grows emotionally, physically and cognitively. The child is allowed and encouraged to be a functioning member of the society. This leads to a feeling of pride and dignity, a beautiful and wonderful sight to behold.

THE TEACHER’S ROLE

female teacher teaching her student in using a computerThe teacher of a Montessori toddler is familiar with the stages of development for this age group. Her role is to see that the child is happy, nurtured and that the environment is meeting the child’s needs. Through her observations of the child, she can determine which new activities and materials may be introduced to an individual child or to a small or large group. The aim is to encourage active, self-directed learning. This will serve your child well in the years to come.

THE ENVIRONMENT

The toddler classroom offers very young children a unique year of self-development in a tender atmosphere of understanding, respect, and support. They are unique in such a way that they provide a very specific structure that fulfills the social, physical, emotional, and psychological needs of each child.

In such environments, there is a space for movement, space for individual work and space for group activities. Everything in the environment is proportionate to the child’s size and is designed to be safe and aesthetically pleasing for children.

THE CHILD’S PURPOSE

The child’s reasons and methods of working are different from ours. We, as adults will usually choose to carry out a task in the most efficient and quickest way. A child, on the other hand, is working to master the activity and to practice and perfect her/his abilities. A child may scrub a table for hours, but only when he/she feels the urge. A child may sweep the floor every morning for two weeks and not again for a month because the child will be occupied with mastering something else.

There are many physical, emotional, and mental values in work. Through these activities, the child learns to be independent. There can never be intelligent choice or responsibility at any age without independence in thought and action. The child learns to concentrate, to control muscles, to focus, to analyze logical steps, and to complete a cycle of activity. Through the practical life activities, children are able to concentrate, make intelligent decisions, and master the basics and introductions of other areas of study such as math, language, the arts and the science. But the purpose of this work is the inner satisfaction and the support of the optimum development of the child. Following a successful, complete cycle of work, a child becomes calm and satisfied; and, because of this inner peace, they will realize and feel the full of love for the environment and for others.

THE TODDLER CURRICULUM

group of kids doing artworksThe Montessori toddler curriculum is carefully prepared to aid the toddler in achieving independence. Social interaction with other children, development of the language skills, music, and movement activities are stressed. The curriculum also includes activities that allow young children to develop fine and gross motor coordination and visual discrimination through the sense and learning materials.

The main areas of curriculum and activity in the toddler program are as follows:

Practical Life: This basically any physical activity that helps a child grow in motor skills, cognitive development, self-confidence and development of his or her own personality and most of all independence. Any controlled movement of hands, arms, legs, feet, eyes, etc. helps your child achieve independence and mastery towards his or her environment. Practical life activities are activities that will prepare your child for life. Being able to take care of himself/herself gives him or her not only self-confidence and freedom but also helps his/here concentration in the mastery of concrete learning that eventually leads to abstract learning such as reading and math.

Sensorial: The sensorial area allows child to use his/her senses to learn about the world. These are materials that will enable the child to order, classify, seriate, and describe sensory impressions in relation, length, width, temperature, mass, color, etc. These activities are those that help the child to awaken and develop awareness of the different characteristics or qualities of objects around him or her through the senses. They appeal to his/her interest and respond to his/her need of observing, touching, tasting, listening, and smelling.

Mathematics: These are materials that will allow the child to internalize the concepts of numbers, symbols and sequences. Hands on experience with math materials give children clear, concrete impression on which to build their own abstractions.

Language: Activities and materials in the language area increase the child’s vocabulary and conversational skills. Language area includes miniature objects, language nomenclature cards (parts of the body, family members, and pets, components of neighborhood, the school and the home), books, and spoken vocabulary enrichment exercises. These activities help the child acquire and develop the naming of each object in his or her environment and the mechanism of sentence formation (expression of thoughts). The activities respond to the ability of the toddler in naming everything he or she meets as his or here capacity to create symbols and concepts develops and gradually learns to effectively communicate with others. Thus, making him or here becomes aware of himself/herself as a separate being. Moreover, the toddler learns because he/she wants to communicate. He/She learns not only isolated words but the relationships of the words and their intent to communicate the thoughts and feelings of the one who speaks.

One of the major differences in a Montessori toddler class is that the children are free to move around at their own will.

Through song and dance and freedom of choice, the toddlers have access to a variety of large muscle activities that offer them opportunities to jump, climb, balance, crawl, or skip. These activities, as well as creative art activities, are offered for each child to choose. This freedom in a safe space is crucial to the toddler program.

SAMPLE TODDLER SCHEDULE

7:30-8:30 ………………………………………….. Greetings/Morning Jobs(Rm.2)
8:30-9:15 ………………………………………….. Greetings/Morning Jobs /Morning Snack/Diapering
9:15-9:30 ………………………………………….. Circle I
9:30-10:30 ………………………………………….. Montessori Work
10:30-11:00 ………………………………………….. Playground
11:00-11:30 ………………………………………….. Chinese Circle/*Diapering/
11:30-12:15 ………………………………………….. Lunch
12:15-2:45 ………………………………………….. Nap
2:45-3:00 ………………………………………….. Wake up/Bathroom
3:00-3:30 ………………………………………….. Playground
3:30-3:45 ………………………………………….. Snack
3:45-4:00 ………………………………………….. Circle II
4:00-5:00 ………………………………………….. Montessori Work
5:00-5:15 ………………………………………….. Chinese Circle
5:15-6:00 ………………………………………….. Afternoon Jobs/Departure

*Diapering is done every two hours or as needed.

contact INFORMATION

EMPIRE MONTESSORI PRESCHOOL

send us A MESSAGE