GOALS OF THE PROGRAM
To foster each child’s social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development during the first two years of life. Our approach builds an authentic sense of self and lays a foundation for secure relationships, enduring curiosity, and lasting self-confidence.
Positive and secure relationships between teachers, infants, and parents
Learning and development occur through the constant exchange between teachers, parents, infants, and their environment.
Children’s learning and interaction occurs in the context of the bigger picture- their family, community, current developmental needs, temperament, and past experiences.
Each child has a unique background and unique needs and contributions, communication between teachers and parents is crucial for the child’s optimal development.
Infants and toddlers build trust in their caregivers when their needs are consistently met.
Each child’s comfort and success in care is intertwined with his or her secure attachment with parents.
We build relationships by:
Encouraging parents to learn about their child’s activities and interests in the childcare setting just as teachers learn about a child’s interests at home.
Helping families navigate the early years of parenting to foster a gentle, mutually respectful, attachment based parenting approach.
Honoring each family’s unique parenting approach, and integrating their needs into our program.
Wearing infants in carriers such as the Ergo or a sling, and encouraging parents to do the same at home.
Attentively and consistently responding to infant’s cues for snuggles, rest, and food as soon as needs are expressed.
Allowing freedom to explore and interact with other infants.
Lasting self confidence and an authentic sense of self
Children’s behavior is purposeful and directed at meeting real needs, which are to be valued and respected.
Both solitary work as well as collaborative work are necessary for cognitive and social development.
Children who learn to care for their bodies feel self confident, self aware, and enjoy caring for themselves.
Infants and toddlers explore their world using all of their senses, and their exploration should be observed and celebrated!
Capabilities develop in predictable stages/sequences throughout life and at each developmental stage children will be able to do new things.
We build confidence by:
Trusting in and supporting a child’s ability to choose what they need to do within the environment at any given time.
Modeling kindness and expecting children to practice being kind. In this age group, gentle do-overs are encouraged and gentle touch is modeled in a calm and repeated way.
Involving the child in all care activities to allow the child to become an active participant rather than a passive recipient.
Presenting opportunities for children to learn how to identify and express their own feelings, and also to recognize and respond to the feelings of other children.
Giving children personal space, a right to be alone when they need to, and a right to choose what they want to work with and with whom they want to work.
Using developmentally appropriate practices in the classroom.
Helping children learn the language to express needs and wants, and learning to read each child’s nonverbal cues for what they need and want so that we can respond.
Consistent, clearly defined limits and expectations to develop discipline.
Enduring curiosity and a lifelong love of learning through play
Children have an essential role in development of an emergent curriculum based on their interests and needs.
Children learn through play. A good teacher can observe children’s play, engage children in play, and extend learning through play.
Learning requires interaction, observation, experimentation, and active exploration of real objects and relationships in the environment.
Children’s play is their work. Their work is taken seriously and respected by teachers and peers.
We foster curiosity by:
Creating curriculum based on children’s interests and presenting new activities each day in a way that is geared toward infants and toddlers developmental needs.
Creating a classroom layout which invites exploration and allows children to access materials any time.
Providing children with many opportunities for active movement, access to open outdoor play spaces, and cozy places to rest and sleep when they want to.
Encouraging children to work at their own pace and work on an activity for as long as they choose.
Trusting in the child to be an initiator, an explorer, and a self-learner.
The Children’s Cottage Infant Toddler Center honors and supports infants to be:
Secure, Competent, Confident, Curious, Cheerful, Attentive, Exploring, Cooperative, Peaceful, Focused, Self-initiating, Resourceful, Involved, Inner-directed, Aware, Interested...... amazing human beings!!