In this program the Montessori Philosophy meets the needs of 18 month to 36 month old children. Appropriate activities and experiences allow a child a smooth entry into the Early Childhood class. The low child-teacher ratio and small class size give each child the space to develop.
Maria Montessori believed that a child's helper in early infancy had the noble task to create a foundation for all later development and learning. She believed that the educational needs of the child under three years of age were extremely important but very different from those of the child past three.
The Montessori environment for children from infancy through three years must focus on, as its highest goal, the nurturing of sensitivity and caring among the children and adults in the environment. This time in the child's life is crucial in the development of trust, altruism and love. Our goal is not to substitute the parents, but to support and enhance the important role of parenthood.
During the first three years of life children are very dependent upon adults in their lives. They are able to explore the environment without assistance. Early in life a child is stimulated by interesting objects at close range. As the year progresses, the child's range eventually expands as they learn to creep around and explore independently. At this level the prepared environment consists of a wide spectrum of activities and objects which are safe, cognitively stimulating, emotionally satisfying and developmentally appropriate.
The Montessori Toddler environment presents the child with a variety of appropriate experiences from which the child can choose freely. The environment is the curriculum for the child. Before three years of age, the child must have a wide range of experiences; after three years of age, the child refines and perfects new skills. It is assumed that in this manner, an appropriate match can be made between the child and needed learning experiences.