Adaptation depends on a child. There are so many kinds of child personality that adapatation will be different for each of them. Younger children seem to adapt faster and this also depends on the willingness of a parent. We encourgae our parents to spend the 3-day adaptation with the child, either by assissting the child in the classroom or withdrawing to the next room, so the child can start taking his / her first actions in the new surrounding. After the intial phase, the toddler usually shows readiness for staying at the school without the parent.
From our experience, we can see that the shorter farewell is, the better. Sometimes the separation fear (the situation when the child starts to panic, seeing the parent leaving the school) appears. It is a natural reaction and will differ from child to child. We always support both the child and the parent getting separated and we do everything in our power possible, to make this stressful moment shorter and less intense, by assissting the child throughout the day. We always make sure the adapting child is taken a special care of, until we see he/she overcomes the initial stress and shows readiness to take part in the group routine.
The toddler’s routine will go around exploring numerous materials on the shelves, without actually concentrating on one particular activity. As the focusing ability is relatively short in toddlers, they’ll basically concentrate on trying to do things for the first time, checking the characteristics of materials and observing their peers. The toddler classroom has been designed to stimulate their curiosity, by providing them with lots of practical life and sensorial materials. Children can choose from more than 40 works to operate, including painting on the easel, reading, listening to music, building from blocks and playing with numerous animal figures. It’s all about exploring through play, and learning how to work with the Montessori materials.
‘Help me do it by myself’
As there are so many things a toddler can already accomplish by himself / herself, we encourage our children to wash their hands, brush the teeth or put on and take off their clothes and slippers all by themselves. However, the teacher acts as a shadow, always ready to help if the child needs it. The toddlers are really keen on tidying up, too, using the table spray & towel and the broom, as they also love to take care of a group pet (the hamster). By doing all this, they acquire new competences, feeling more and more confident about their preschool daily activities. They also get naturally ready to be transferred to the Casa class, where independence is one of the vital features.
Toddlers get used to the circle routine very quickly and they really like it. The circle class in the group is mainly around playing! So they’ll be singing lots of songs, especially with movement, listen to stories read or played from audiobooks; there’s lots of new vocabulary being introduced in the circle. The children update the calendar, as well as they do some introductory counting and sound learning.
The art & extra classes
Just like in the Casa class, we continuously encourage the little ones to experiment with different art forms. We offer them various materials to try and so, after some very short time, they develop a great need to paint, draw and stick, making collages, which become more and more complex. As their imagination is expanding, we let them express themselves on different paper sizes and textures, too.
Our toddlers will take part in an extra activity every day! They will have dance, music, gymnastics with correcting elements, cooking project and ceramics.