TODDLER CLASSROOM | 18 M - 3 Y | 12 STUDENTS | 4 TEACHER
Laughter spills out of our Toddler classrooms, as children and educators experience the unfolding curriculum through active exploration and social interactions. A slower tempo to the day is encouraged to make space for children’s interests and curiosities to unfold naturally as they experience their environment. Tuning in to the natural rhythms of children helps us respond to their dynamic needs, and the program is flexible and responsive to the children’s social, emotional and developmental needs. The curriculum emerges simultaneously as the children evolve their understanding and experiences of their world.
Child as an Active Citizen
We believe in building a greater story with children that honours children’s perspectives, their desire to engage in meaningful experiences and their eagerness to participate amongst a community of learners. Our image of the child views children as active citizens of their community, contributing to their learning journey and to their relationships with others. Our classroom is a space where co-existing with one another permeates a culture of inclusion, where individual stories and unique perspectives are woven together by our common belief that Nido de Montessori fosters reciprocity, respect and connection to one another, to our land and to our community.
We value negotiation between children and educators. We consider the classroom space as one that invites interaction through collaboration and shared meaning-making. We believe in negotiated curriculum through responsive and reflective teaching and guidance, where curriculum is inspired by children’s interests, curiosities and lived experiences.
Community and Belonging
Responsive practices guide the flow of our daily rhythms and rituals in the classroom. Our relationships with children are deeply rooted in our belief that a strong and healthy attachment to an educator is the cornerstone of successful early-learning experiences. We strive to nurture a community that fosters a positive sense of well-being and belonging for the child. We understand that children have the capacity to articulate ideas, understandings and perspectives through multiple languages. We encourage expression through movement, material exploration, play, arts and music – where children and educators, alongside one another, make meaning of the world around us.
Documentation & Stories of Learning
As a community of educators, we recognize the importance of reflective practice to deepen our understanding of children’s learning processes and to guide curriculum planning as we scaffold their learning. As such, we value the process of creating documentation as a means of sharing children’s stories of learning with their families, school and community. Documentation is shared within our classrooms and communal school entrance so that exchange of ideas, perspectives and wonderings can emerge between children, educators and families.
Exploration and Encounters with Materials
We believe that children’s early-learning experiences are magnified by the environments in which they learn in, the relationships nurtured between children, educators and families, and through the materials they encounter. As a community we emphasize care and respect for materials and the environment, forging independence through children’s autonomy, and building concentration through exploration of materials and environments that captivate their interest. We understand that children are active participants of their community who are capable of contributing to relationships with others and developing a sense of social responsibility and consciousness, while simultaneously engaging in meaningful shared experiences.