Montessori for toddlers is more than just childcare. This is a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to use this ideal environment when your child is absorbing everything like a sponge. There are key areas of development in the toddler years that a high quality Montessori toddler program addresses, resulting in an optimal early learning environment for the child.
Dr. Montessori discovered that during the toddler time, a young child has a special aptitude for learning certain things:
The toddler child is especially sensitive to order and if you build on that interest, good habits can form to last a lifetime. The Montessori classroom is designed around a simple, orderly environment that is child-sized and consistent – the child knows what to expect every day and where to find his favorite activity. The choices are minimized so as not to overwhelm. Dr Montessori found that much of the toddler's uncontrollable emotions (tantrums, e.g.) come from feeling out of control.
Toddler age children have a special sensitivity for learning language they hear spoken around them.
They are happier because they can express their needs, rather than resort to crying or tantrums. The Montessori toddler classroom offers many creative linguistic concepts to expand their growing vocabularies. Through conversations, listening to stories, identifying objects and learning songs and poems, they further their language skills.
Toddlers often are in a frustrating position: they want to do things for themselves, but do not know how. In the Montessori classroom, children are given the chance to develop skills to care for themselves and their environment. Practical life activities are simple and can be accomplished by each child. Through repetition, each child learns patterns and develops order and sequencing skills. Repeated successes with these activities helps build a child's confidence as they become more independent.
Depending on your Montessori school, you will often have highly-trained Montessori teachers guiding your child, rather than minimally trained childcare providers who have high turnover and don't look at childcare as their career. At HMS, we offer professionally trained teachers who have undergone a rigorous year long training course and understand the Montessori philosophy. Check out the HMS Toddler Program to learn more about this important learning phase.