Defining the Toddler
Toddlers are natural explorers. In this developmental stage, they show interest in everything in their environment and want to examine and investigate every detail. They are developing both their fine and gross motor skills, learning to climb, run, balance and move things, as well as, to pick up small objects and work to put things together, or draw.
Speech and language development
Toddlers are fascinated by words and names, and they begin to pick up new words with remarkable speed. They are learning to listen to others and form their own sentences to get their needs met.
Toddlers form very strong attachments to those they love and are interested in playing near other children. Toddlers are learning about their own feelings as well as developing empathy for others. In their eagerness to learn, they become frustrated when prevented in any way from continuing their exploration.
Toddlers and early childhood development
Dr. Montessori referred to the toddler stage of development as the period of the Unconscious Absorbent Mind. The toddler at this age is like a sponge, absorbing stunning amounts of knowledge from his/her environment, rapidly and effortlessly. Further, Dr. Montessori observed that children pass through Sensitive Periods, a developmental time during which it is easier and more natural for a child to learn certain skills.
Papillon Montessori's developmental approach to the toddler
The Papillon Montessori Toddler House program was created to facilitate this growth and learning. At this age, the classroom environment and the curriculum are designed to foster independence, self-discovery, socialization, natural curiosity, and exploration. At Papillon Montessori, our Toddler environment is filled with inviting materials, child-sized furniture, and loving and skilled teachers, creating a place in which each child's natural abilities can unfold.
Why start preschool so early?
Toddler House is a Montessori tradition. The toddler age child is like a sponge, absorbing stunning amounts of knowledge from his environment rapidly and effortlessly. Dr. Montessori identified this fertile period of cognitive development and recognized the need for a rich, well prepared environment just for toddlers.
How do toddlers benefit?
Our rich curriculum for toddlers is especially designed to:
- Foster cognitive development and speech and language development
- Strengthen fine motor skills and gross motor skills
- Teach practical life skills and promote independence
- Promote confidence, kindness, grace and courtesy
What makes the Toddler House classroom unique?
- A dedicated team of warm and nurturing teachers trained in early childhood development and Montessori education.
- Spacious, well designed areas where toddlers are free to explore their indoor and outdoor environments with all their senses.
- A classroom where everything is toddler-sized. Attractive learning materials are displayed on low shelves within easy reach for toddlers.
What do toddlers do at Papillon Montessori?
- Toddlers learn by doing.
- Toddlers take pride in sorting, stacking and counting, matching and sequencing, scooping and pouring, cleaning and sweeping.
- Toddlers spend time outdoors every day (weather permitting). Exercise is a regular part of each day.
- Toddlers sweep, clean, help prepare their own snack, and learn to pour.
- Toddlers are free to choose their “work,” and work becomes a cherished activity.
Independence is encouraged at a gradual pace in the Toddler House.
- We believe that even very small children can be responsible for the care of themselves and their own environments.
- Diapering is a regular part of our daily routine. Toddlers help by getting their own diapers and wipes out of their cubbies. Toilet training is a part of our Toddler House curriculum when your child is ready.
Our teachers devote much attention to transitions.
- An Papillon Montessori classroom feels a lot like family — it can be your child’s home away from home.
- Toddlers who complete the program experience a smooth transition to Children’s House Preschool at the next level.
The results of Toddler House are tangible.
- Toddlers learn language from stimulating materials and activities, and learn to articulate their wants, needs, likes, and dislikes.
- Self-esteem and feelings of competence develop naturally as the toddlers successfully complete their work.
- Toddlers gain an awareness of other children and learn to feel secure in the relaxed atmosphere of our school.
- Toddlers are well prepared for Children’s House preschool, the next step in their Montessori education.