Ages 18 months to 3 years
Montessori recognized that even the youngest child has an innate desire to learn and believed that education should begin early so that each child can begin forming his or her identity and begin realizing their unique potential. The WMS Toddler Program allows children ages 18 months to 3 years to develop social skills, emotional growth, physical coordination, and cognitive learning.
Entry into this environment begins gradually, with parent and child coming in together for short periods of time until a foundation of trust is established. This “phasing-in” also supports the parent/child separation process which is a primary task of the toddler period of development. We encourage parents who enroll their children in the WMS Toddler Program to provide a home environment which is consistent with the Montessori philosophy of child development.
The Toddler Curriculum is based on four developmental areas: sensory and perceptual, physical and motor, self-help skills, and social/emotional development.
Sensory and perceptual
- Specifically designed materials help children become aware of themselves and the world around them
- Stimulation of the five senses aids cognitive development
Physical and motor
- The classroom is safe, nurturing and allows for freedom of movement so that children may explore their surroundings
- Teachers are responsive to children’s needs and adapt their pace to the children
- Activities that encourage small and large muscle movement, fine motor skills, and coordination are part of the daily routine.
- Activities like pouring, opening and closing, scooping and stringing help children develop skills they will use in real life
- The classroom is rich in language. Children are taught to use their words.
- Group activities help children bond with adults and peers by forming friendships and working and playing together
- Toddlers learn to demonstrate empathy for one another and learn the dynamics and expectations of working with others