TODDLER CLASSROOM (starts at 24 Months)
The toddler classroom offers very young children a unique time of self-development in a tender atmosphere of special understanding, respect and support. They are unique in that they provide a very specific structure which fulfills the social, physical, emotional and psychological needs of each child.
In these environments, there is 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 toddler classroom is simpler and a slower pace than the early childhood (three to six year old) classroom.
Toddlers are given opportunities to work in the development of language skill, art, music sensorial and practical life. The practical life area is particularly emphasized as the activities in this area give children the chance to develop skills to care for themselves and their environment in the following areas: control of movement, grace and courtesy. Practical life activities are simple and can be accomplished by each child. They offer repetitive cycle, which helps the child establish patterns of order and sequencing. Due to the fact that these are very real activities, each child becomes grounded in reality, building the child’s self-esteem is the ultimate goal and this is accomplished through repeated successes with these activities.
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 exercises 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. However, it is always tempered by two important limits that will be beneficial for a lifetime, respect for others and respect for the environment.