All furniture in the Toddler class is specifically designed for promoting the young child's 'I can do it' attitude. The child's sense of order is developed in a carefully prepared learning environment where everything has a place. The children care for their environment fostering a sense of accomplishment. They cultivate a sense of sequencing and completing tasks as they develop the ability to put one activity away before beginning another.
Classroom activities foster coordination, control of movement, concentration and independence. The young child is naturally drawn to the activities of everyday life. As children happily repeat these activities, refining their coordination and experiencing success, they become more independent in their ability and desire to care for themselves and their environment. Toddlers independently set the table for snack, mix muffin batter, wash dishes, wipe up their spills and sponge off tables. Children choose fine motor activities, acquire toileting independence, paint and enjoy music together. Language development is also a high priority in the Toddler class.
Social and Emotional Development
Often the Toddler community is the first experience children have with other children of their own age and abilities. Learning how to interact in respectful ways is fundamental to the Toddler community and the child’s future experiences in the larger world. Grace and courtesy are modeled by the Teacher and Assistant. “Please” and “thank you” or, “no thank you” is practiced often in teachable moments. Redirection is used to encourage positive behavior in the environment.
Through consistent school experiences, children engage respectfully with each other, the adults and the materials in the environment. Helping each other, offering a snack, pouring a drink for a friend and consideration of others are all parts of building relationships with each other and with the adults.
During the toddler years, a child experiences a critical period for developing language. Therefore, language development is a high priority in the Toddler class. It is during the toddler years that children speak their first words, phrases and sentences. Some children may begin the program with no spoken language while others may already know many words. The Teacher purposefully supports learning new vocabulary and correct pronunciation by singing, asking questions, reading and conversing.