MSL’s Toddler environment supports children ages 24 to 36 months old, with one lead Montessori-certified teacher and one trained assistant.
Overview of Program
The Montessori School of Louisville toddler curriculum focuses on assisting children to fulfill their need to trust, be independent, and develop self-control. The materials are developmentally appropriate, and teachers carefully plan lessons to meet the child’s ever changing needs.
The carefully planned and prepared class environment invites toddlers to move with intention and coordination and to communicate with others. Children are guided toward appropriate behaviors in a positive and consistent manner as they begin to understand freedom within limits. It is important to us that toddlers feel both physically and emotionally safe and well loved.
During the beginning weeks in a toddler class, children experience a major transition. To ease this transition, we provide a “phase-in” period. The first day is thirty minutes in the classroom with the parent in the lobby, then we try to increase the time by an hour each day for three days. After this phase-in period, children generally feel comfortable that their parents have trust in the classroom.
Consistency then becomes important in the toddler’s life. Parents should develop a goodbye routine with their child. A tender hug or kiss and a confident demeanor as your child leaves helps them to adjust to a new routine. Passing through this separation experience is one of the major learning experiences in a child’s life. Successfully passing through separation anxiety is one of the major learning experiences for the toddler.
Toddlers are naturally curious and full of energy. Children engage in hands-on activities, participate in group activities, and take part in lessons that help them care for their environment and themselves. Children practice patience, self-control, and respect for one another in their community life.
Language skills abound, as our toddlers are learning both nonverbal and verbal communication. Once they have learned to communicate their own needs, they extend those abilities into conversations with each other. Teachers are trained to observe and facilitate conversations with students and aid in conflict resolution.
The curriculum for the toddlers reflects the belief that each child develops on their own unique schedule, and the developmental process should be respected. Lessons are planned to minimize adult intervention and aid in independence. Grace and courtesy lessons create the foundation of the Montessori classroom. It is through the lessons provided and the modeling from the teachers that the culture of the community is established.
The introduction to practical life and sensorial lessons allow the toddler to gain confidence in themselves and use their senses as they explore their environment. Language is woven through all areas of the curriculum. Toddlers acquire language through the use of all their senses. Building listening skills and learning to follow directions helps the toddler understand the function of language. Curiosity and the ability to move materials with their hands fosters the mathematical mind. Toddlers use objects in their environment to experience adding to and taking away which provides the foundation for abstract applications.