Developing Minds and Bodies
By their first birthday, children develop a clear understanding that they are important people. They explore the world around them with hands on interaction in their environment. and spending a short amount of time on each activity. Because of their short attention span caregivers must have lots of activities and ideas that are oriented towards child involvement. Learning to get along with others, caring for themselves, thinking for themselves, and expressing themselves are important skills that one year olds are beginning to learn. We use activities in the Creative Curriculum and Active Learning as we provide developmental care for our children. In our planning process, we strive to help our children develop both their minds and bodies.
We provide the following key experiences in our Toddler classrooms:
Listening and Talking
- Books and Pictures: Children are read to every day and play simple picture games.
- Conversation: Children are encouraged to use or show understanding of words. Adults point to, name and talk about pictures or real items.
- Role model appropriate conversation skills (eye contact, close proximity, and allowing time for someone to answer) are taught and used.
- Sign language is taught and used frequently to help our children communicate more effectively and build their vocabulary.
- Large Muscles: Walk, run, climb, balance, throw, kick, jump.
- Small Muscles: Puzzles, stringing spools, pull-apart toys, using washable crayons and markers, filling and dumping toys into a container, zipping, and feeding one’s self.
- Hand and eye coordination is developed by the use of puzzles and other manipulatives
- Art: Creating with crayons, colored chalk, washable markers and paint, molding with play dough, and designing with paper, collage materials and glue.
- Spacial relations are built by creative art experiences showing where the eyes and mouth are placed on a face.
- Blocks: Cloth, plastic, wooden or cardboard blocks along with toy people, animals, and vehicles used daily to create scenes for make believe.
- Dramatic Play: Pocketbooks, bags, baskets, playhouse furniture, dolls, telephones, toy shopping carts, and other dress up items are available daily for children to pretend about things they know and see around them.
- Music and Movement: Musical instruments and toys, songs, finger plays, recorded music (classical, multicultural, lullabies, rhythm, and dance).
Learning from the World Around Them
- Nature: Daily outdoor time, natural things (flowers, birds, insects, plants animals) are displayed, pointed out and talked about, and sand and water play is available regularly.
- Numbers: Introduction to number ideas and words through number rhymes songs, hearing quantity size words, and hearing adults counting items.
- Five Senses: This is the most natural way for toddlers to learn. Children will be given opportunities to taste and feel things in their mouths, but their other senses will be used more.
- Shape, Size and Color: While exploring toys, pictures, and familiar items, children will discover these attributes.
- Cultural Acitivities are presented including basic Spanish.