A Day in the Life - Toddler
The toddler children are greeted by an assistant when they helped out of their cars, and into the building. The children love to enter through the small door that is just their size. They then proceed to their classroom where they are greeted by their Directress and they are off to start their day.
The children change their shoes after entering the room, wash their hands and go about their day selecting an activity, or simply observe the other children and the environment.
The Toddler programs are each two hours long, and the children are allowed to make independent work choices for the first one and a half hours. The areas of the classroom include practical life, sensorial, math and language. Some of this time is also for snack (which they will prepare and serve themselves).
A large portion of the Toddler program is focused on independence. This includes caring for themselves, taking care of their environment and caring for others. This broad spectrum of activities includes everything from putting on their own shoes, making their own work choices and eventually helping the other children.
The academic areas of math, language and science are available because children between the ages of 2 to 4 are statistically ready or “sensitive” to sounds and numbers. This is the time in their life when they learn sounds and numbers easily, and they show a true interest in these areas. The sensorial area is where children learn to categorize items and to notice the difference in size and shape, color and texture. Vocabulary is also an important aspect of the Toddler program and parents who observe can see and hear the way that everything in the environment is tied into language.
Socialization is a very important component of the Toddler program. Children of this age are not familiar with the concept of sharing the environment, sharing their teacher or sharing their time with 15 other children of the same age. During each day the children learn to deal with these challenges and will learn to share, learn to wait their turn and to follow the rules that apply to each and every one of them.
The Directresses of RKMS are trained observers and will take time every day to observe the children, note their interests and strengths and set up the environment to meet their needs. The environment will contain items of interest for all of the children and will encourage them to progress at their own rate. In Montessori, we understand that all children are unique individuals who learn in their own way and progress at their own pace and this is the way that the environment is set for them.
There is line time every day where the children gather on the line and sing songs, listen to stories, do movement and learn to behave in a group setting. Using the gym or the playground is also a daily activity and music class is once a week.
At the end of a busy day of working, observing and learning to be on their own, the Toddler class gathers in the lobby for carpool time. When their car arrives each child shakes the hand of the Directress, says good-by to their friends and exit through the big door to their car. For most of these children it’s time for a nap.