The youngest children at our school delight in exploring the world around them. Even routine activities such as feeding and diapering provide opportunities for our teachers to sing, talk, and interact with your child.
Toddlers learn best in the context of relationships within small groups. In our program, the approach focuses on the recognition that a curriculum must be based on both care and education, those being one and the same for toddlers. Promoting children’s secure attachment relationships with caregivers and families through primary care-giving with a consistent adult is given the highest priority. Our curriculum centers on connections and relationships where adults respect and respond to children’s cues and interests. The caregiver/teacher will get to know the children and families well so that experiences enhance and blend with home life.
Loris Malaguzzi, founder of the programs in Reggio Emilia, has taught us that children express their thoughts and feelings through 100 Languages, the spoken word certainly, but also through gesture, music, constructing, dramatic play, dance, paint, clay, and drawing to name a few. Exploring these languages prepares children for their future journeys during the preschool years.
Hands-on and authentic experiences guide the curriculum for children to discover. Children are encouraged to use their senses as they explore the world around them. Through early literacy experiences, children learn to appreciate language, gain new vocabulary, and learn to use new words and concepts. Simple participatory songs and finger plays are important introductions to speech patterns, motor skill development, and math concepts.
Project work often steers their curriculum. Our teaching staff observes the children’s interests through their play. Activities are developed and items are added to the environment to encourage further exploration, questioning, and discovery. It is proven that children learn more when the subject stimulates them; therefore colors, numbers, and emergent literacy are all strengthened through the Project Approach.