Hello Toddler Families!
Our “new year” has started out wonderfully! January saw all of the children enjoying the Toddler Environment and busy at work!
Welcome to our new friends!
We are excited to welcome our new toddler friend Carolina S. (parents Desiree and Oliver) starting February 1st. This completes our Toddler Community for the rest of the year.
We also welcome our new Assistant, Brandi Longen. She has fit in beautifully with our Toddler Community. She has Montessori experience and Assistant training and is loved by the children!
I’ve had many of you request to have the names of our toddlers as your children will talk about them at home, but you can’t quite catch the name…So here they are:
Amy – Guide Brandi – Assistant
Boys- Arlo, Devin, Evan, Jonah, Poyraz, Riley, Thatcher
Girls- Anna, Carolina, Isabela (Bela), Reese, Violet
As we’ve shared many times, consistency is the key to a successful Toddler Environment. We will have a special Valentine snack and have a special Valentine gluing project, but will keep the daily routine the same. We will not have a Valentine exchange with the children.
The work that we do!
When you look at your daily green sheets you’ll find a section that we write the activities, “work”, that your child has chosen for the day. Does this look familiar: wood polishing, chalkboard, language-farm animal with picture cards, sweeping…with a variety of combinations!!
Being able to choose their own work is a key starting point in the Toddler’s development of independence, development of the will, concentration, and the love of learning! On the surface these activities may seem simple, but the cycle of the activity and the steps the child follows are actually quite involved.
Each activity has three parts to the cycle. The beginning is when the child chooses the work, takes it to an appropriate work area and sets the work up. The middle is when the child is actually doing the work and often will repeat the work several times. The end of the cycle is when the child replaces the work on the shelf where it belongs and replaces any of the items that need replacing.
When the toddler chooses a work there are many steps to the activity. I will use wood polishing as an example. When the child chooses wood polishing these are the steps taken:
- Bring the tray with wood polishing to a table.
- Choose a wood item to polish (there are several wood items placed around the room: large wooden elephant, baby wooden elephant, wooden turtle, percussion frog).
- Bring the item back to the work table.
- Set out the oil cloth mat.
- On the mat set out the polish (we actually use baby lotion in a small squeeze bottle), the dish, and the polishing cloth.
- Set the wooden item (let’s say turtle) on the mat.
- Squeeze some polish into the dish.
- Put the finger mitt onto the pointer and middle finger.
- Use the finger mitt to wipe the polish out of the dish.
- Spread the polish onto the turtle.
- Polish the turtle by rubbing the polish in with the mitt.
- This may be repeated again and again!
- When finished polishing, the child puts the polishing cloth in the dirty laundry and gets a new one to put on the tray.
- The child puts the polish, bowl, and clean polishing cloth on the tray.
- Get the pink sponge and wipe the oil cloth.
- Return the oil cloth mat to the shelf.
- Return the tray to the shelf.
- Find a special place to put your beautifully polished wood turtle.
Whew!! So next time you look at the activities your toddler has chosen – know that they have worked very hard!
Thank you very much to everyone who donated board books to our library! Children love reading books.
February Dates to Remember!
Mon Feb 15h – No School (President’s Day)
Sat Feb 27th – Jazz for JMS (Fundraiser – look for information coming from the office!)
Looking ahead: Fri March 4th - No School (Conferences)
As always, please contact us with any questions or concerns you have!
Amy and Brandi