The carefully prepared, warm and welcoming Toddler classroom is a special place for our youngest students to begin their steps toward independence. The environment is scaled to the children's size and filled with developmentally appropriate activities and materials designed to allow the children to grow and explore, developing independence and self-reliance. Our curriculum supports the physical, cognitive, social and emotional development of each child. Toddlers strengthen their speech and language development and both fine and gross motor skills as they explore self, their family and the world in which they live.
Our skilled and knowledgeable teachers aid the children's emerging language skills and assist them as they become more confident in all aspects of self-care, including in the bathroom. Equilibrium and locomotion, as well as gross and fine motor coordination, are a focus. As the student becomes ready, appropriate Montessori materials are introduced. Each child is respected as an individual being and is lovingly assisted along the road to independence.
The curriculum centers around practical life exercises, sensorial experiences, language, math, and cultural studies. The toddlers learn concentration, coordination, language skills, responsibility and respect—all of which prepare them well for a successful transition into our Primary classrooms. Music and art are part of the daily program. In addition, the music teacher leads a Music and Movement class once per week.
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 find. They are developing both their fine and gross motor skills, loving to climb, run, balance and move things, as well as pick up small objects and work to put things together or draw.
Toddlers are fascinated by words and names, and 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 and empathy for others. In their eagerness to learn they become frustrated when prevented in any way from continuing their exploration.
Dr. Montessori referred to this 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 environment rapidly and effortlessly. Further, Dr. Montessori observed that children pass through Sensitive Periods, developmental times during which it is easier and more natural for a child to learn certain skills. The IMSP Toddler program is created to facilitate this growth and learning. 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.