The Montessori curriculum looks at the toddler as a child between 12 months and 36 months. It is a period characterized by the need to explore everything, move, and develop large motor coordination and strength. We believe at this age there is huge expansion into language. They develop a capacity to create symbols, images, and concepts and become aware of him/herself as a separate and independent person.
The BMS curriculum has five main areas at the toddler level:
The Toddler program takes advantage of the toddler’s natural drive to act independently. We help them learn to care for themselves including washing hands, putting on jackets, putting on shoes, and feeding themselves. In this language-rich environment, teachers support and guide toddlers as they explore order and disorder, and refine their emerging motor skills. Outdoor play is part of the daily routine.
Toddler exercises and activities recognize that children learn by doing. Classroom materials are always accessible, attractive, safe, and geared for a child’s success. Activities are changed regularly in response to children's need for variety and challenge as they grow and learn. The safe, loving, gentle atmosphere puts children and parents at ease and makes for a trusting, spontaneous transition to school.
The toddler needs a self-contained environment prepared just for him/her. They will learn to take care of all their own needs in their classroom. They need the facility to toilet train, prepare their own meals and snacks, hang up their own cloths and dress and undress themselves. They need a space for movement and larger motor activities and a quieter space for manipulative, language and more concentration work. One of the major differences in a Montessori toddler class is that the children are free to move around at will, carry objects, walk as a group, climb and take long walks outside.
-- We have surveillance cameras in the main building and the Toddler 1 room --
The Teacher’s Role
The teacher of a Montessori toddler needs to be very familiar with the stages of development for this age group. They have an extensive list of activities and developmentally appropriate educational materials. Each material must isolate one concept or skill at a time.She then must carefully prepare the environment, observe the child and then guide her based on her observations. We cannot know the needs of the child unless we are constantly observing. We cannot prepare the environment unless we know the needs of the child. This is the fundamental role of the teacher - prepare the environment and observe the child - non-directive guidance.
While at BMS, teachers will be promoting the real life skills of dressing and undressing, grooming and toilet learning, carrying things, cleaning, grace and courtesy. Your toddler will be learning sense awareness (learning about dimensions, shapes, colors, textures, sounds, tastes, smells) and primary language development by connecting their observations and sense training. There will be stories, singing, talking and special materials to help teach abstract vocabulary.
Art is skills based and the children can freely choose cutting, gluing, painting, magic makers, or clay. We listen to music of all varieties to help children develop an ear for music as well as give more formal instruction on rhymes, moving to music and practicing duplicating rhythms.