YOUNG CHILD'S COMMUNITY
Our Young Child's Community is located in our beautiful carriage house on the playground of our campus. Our spacious classroom offers a beautiful, calm, welcoming environment with soothing colors and a lot of natural light. Our Toddler Community serves children of the approximate age of 12 months to 2 1/2 years, in a small and intimate group of ten to twelve children with a trained teacher and 2 assistants. The Toddler Community provides a rich learning environment that is appropriate to the young child’s need for movement, communication, independence and self-discipline.
When touring the Young Child's Community, you will see children at ease, curious, confident and engaged in purposeful work. They may not always be serious or quiet, but they are very involved in their learning and in the development of new, age appropriate skills.
You will observe our toddlers moving about in the space as they care for indoor and outdoor plants, fill bird and squirrel feeders and enjoy a story time or a special song. They will be preparing fruits and vegetables and setting the table while inviting their friends for snack or lunch. They will be participating in the daily life of this community by washing dishes, washing cloths, polishing their shoes and baking. The toddlers are learning, with guidance, to solve problems peacefully. They are in a special time in their development where they want to learn how to do everything for themselves. The Montessori environment empowers this strong sense of “help me do it by myself” by offering different activities that appeal to even the youngest of children.
Our classroom guides will show the children many different lessons to assist this strong sense of independence. We have specially designed dressing frames for the children to use when learning how to button their coat and how to zip their own jacket. We have many lessons to help the toddler refine his hand-eye coordination and to help them establish handedness and a strengthened pincer grip. These lessons include: puzzles, bead stringing, easel painting, cutting with scissors, building with blocks, sewing and food preparation.
There are many lessons involving water appealing to the young child's need for sensorial exploraton. Some of these lessons include: washing linens, flower arranging, caring for plants, washing dishes, mopping and teeth brushing. The young child feels such satisfaction from these lessons as he is not only satisfying his love of working with water, but he also feels a strong sense of importance when his work is purposeful like the work that he has, for so long, observed mom or dad or his teacher doing. He is thrilled to participate in the work of adults.
The adults in this space are loving and respectful of each child’s individuality. A Montessori education is preparation for life. Our work in this special program is to assist each child in his or her unique development in the areas of self-calming, self-control, and self-confidence. The guides working in this environment understand that optimism, a positive attitude, and hope for the future are essential to the success of all children.
Please visit the link (with permission of http://www.thejoyfulchild.us) titled: Montessori Birth to Three for further insight into the the Montessori philosophy. It will provide you with information and short videos that will explain exactly what we are focusing on daily in this very special community of young children. Thank you.