The Journey to Independence (18 months – 3 Years)
“The greatest development is achieved during the first years of life, and therefore it is then that the greatest care should be taken. If this is done, then the child does not become a burden; he will reveal himself as the greatest marvel of nature.” – Dr. Maria Montessori
Help Me to Do It Myself
Your child has a natural drive to be independent which we encourage by creating an environment where everything is just the right size for her to do things on her own. Child-sized tools that fit her tiny hands allow her to prepare a snack and serve it to friends. A miniature broom empowers her to clean up on her own. She is taught the skills of self-care and toilet training. Your child learns a set of concrete life skills and self-confidence – but, more importantly, develops the belief that she can choose to make a genuine impact on her world.
A Beautiful Environment
Our bright and sunny toddler classrooms are specially designed for your child between the ages of 18 and 36 months. It is a world scaled down to your child’s size. Here, your child paints, cooks, waters the garden, sings songs with friends and plays with materials that develop fine and gross motor coordination.
Practice Makes Permanent
Often, children who don’t do things for themselves simply don’t know how or haven’t been given the chance. We take a different approach – by observing your child closely, providing just the right lesson when she is ready and then allowing her to practice again and again (and again!) until she masters it. Mistakes are viewed as learning opportunities in an atmosphere of patience, trust and respect.
We surround your child with rich and stimulating conversation to support this once-in-a-lifetime period of rapid language development. Your child, trying to blow bubbles, might be encouraged with “Blow! Can you make the air move just like the wind?” Your child’s mind effortlessly absorbs the new vocabulary, which plants the seeds for reading, writing and self-expression in the future.
Making first friends and learning how to function within a community is a life-shaping experience for your child. Your child emerges with strong friendships that will continue as she moves through the rest of the programs in Montessori.
An Environment Conducive to Learning
Where so many early childhood programs are chaotic and overwhelming, parents are often surprised to see the peaceful tone of our toddler classrooms. The calm atmosphere and lack of distraction help her to develop impulse control and concentration, planting the seeds for learning in this classroom and beyond.
A Joyful Experience
Maria Montessori once said, “One test of the correctness of the educational procedure is the happiness of the child.” Take a peek into our toddler classrooms and you will see children who are happy, engaged and deeply connected to their friends and teachers. As a result, your child develops a deep affinity for school and a true love of learning.
To be a toddler is to be curious. There are so many things to see, touch, hear, feel and do in the classroom! Beautiful materials that stimulate her senses are rotated frequently on low shelves to pique your child’s curiosity. She is encouraged to move freely around the classroom, to choose activities and explore her own interests.
Ready to Move Up
Sometime between the ages of 2 1/2 to 3 years of age, your child’s language skills and self-expression will develop rapidly; he will express a growing confidence in independence and a keen interest in broader concepts; he will want to know what lies ahead, outside of the toddler classroom. At this point, he is ready to move up to the Primary classroom, for children from the ages of 3 to 6.