18 months through 36 months
Toddlers are building the foundation for who they are to become. Their character, self-esteem, purpose in life, social skills, and learning processes begin to form.
To be a toddler is to be curious. Our first mission is to make sure children end their Toddler period with their curiosity intact, for it is an essential life tool and is fragile. With this in mind, the environment is a prepared “little society.” The child is not “served,” but encouraged to become a functioning member of the society and to explore it fully. Multi-age classrooms feature custom-sized tables and chairs, sinks and stools, bookshelves and mirrors, and indoor and outdoor play areas, all designed to appeal to the child’s natural curiosity.
Activities are positioned around the room for toddlers to choose independently. They have freedom of movement to explore, and they are given the time they need to complete what they start. Each activity deals with a particular theme, skill, or subject of value to toddler development. These activities allow toddlers to begin to experience concepts of sequence, form, shape, movement, and sound. The activities change and evolve as the child grows physically, emotionally, and intellectually.
Toddlers very much enjoy learning living skills. Activities, which up until now have been going on around them, but which they can now do themselves, are seemingly irresistible: getting dressed, preparing lunch, setting the table, sweeping the floor, etc. Being able to use breakable objects for the first time, rather than their plastic substitutes, creates an instantaneous surge of pride at this age.
Teachers in the Toddler program are Montessori professionals certified for this age group. They continually seek out new experiences for the toddlers that will stimulate their sense of curiosity. Teachers are expert in the language for interacting with toddlers, and provide the respect, tenderness, warmth, and patience that allow the children to blossom.
“Our child’s toddler teacher was, and is, the most important person in our lives as parents. She was the one who taught us how to parent. She always understood every side of any situation, how best to help the child and how best to support the parent. Kindly, gently, and with tremendous skill and experience, she guided us through troubled waters (our daughter was intense!). She taught us how to partner with teachers in a way that brings the best out of all parties and creates that essentially aligned environment for the child. She also made sure we didn’t take ourselves too seriously. We were intense parents and she opened up to us a more relaxed, more empathetic and more present parenting style. I learned to fully appreciate the world of the toddler. To this day I share the lessons I learned from her all those years ago with other parents I come into contact with.”
– Dr. Aaron Torrance, Alumni Parent