Toddler 2

Toddler 2 - May 17, 2019

Seeds & Plants

The Toddler 2 class continued their exploration of seeds and plants this week. The children were eager to observe the growth of their bean sprouts and herb plants! They especially loved looking closely at the growing plants through a magnifying glass. It is a delight to hear joyful exclamations of "Look, it's germinating!" throughout the morning.


Numeral & Quantity Recognition

In addition to numeral and quantity recognition, an important component of the Toddler Math curriculum is exploring three-dimensional geometric shapes. The Geometric Solids are a traditional Montessori material and a particular favorite of many Toddler 2 students. The shapes are alike in all qualities (color, size, weight, texture) except for their shapes, which allows the child to focus thoughtfully on this single attribute. The children are excited to learn the names of the different solids and love to experiment with the many ways the shapes can roll, spin, stack and balance.


Caterpillars

The Toddler 2 students were delighted to welcome their caterpillars to the classroom! Everyone was eager to observe the tiny caterpillars and they are all looking forward to caring for them as they grow into beautiful butterflies. The class is grateful to Ms. Cristina and the Waterfront School Foundation for providing the Toddlers with such a wonderful learning experience!

T2 caterpillars.jpg

Toddler 2 - May 10, 2019

Spring Weather

The Toddler 2 students have been delighted to finally welcome the beautiful spring weather! They are enjoying the opportunity for unstructured time to play with friends, ride tricycles and scooters and observe the various animals that share our outdoor space. Several children were particularly protective of this worm and helped move it to the side of the playground to avoid being stepped on.


The Toddler 2 students completed their colorful group art project this week. They divided their gold-painted canvas into sections with masking tape and took turns painting each section with a special color of their choosing. When they took the tape off, they were excited to see stripes of gold running between the blocks of color. All week, the children have been eager to point out "their" colors on the finished painting and enjoy the beautiful results of their hard work!

Toddler 2 - May 3, 2019

Baby Doll Work

A favorite new piece of work in the Toddler 2 Practical Life area this week was giving the baby doll a bath. This multi-step activity requires the child to follow a careful sequence of directions, from cleaning the doll with a washcloth to drying her and putting her clothes back on. By inviting the child to act out an activity they may have observed at home, this work combines imaginative play with a connection to the real world. It also offers a wonderful opportunity for practicing "gentle hands" and "inside voices" so as not to startle the baby!


Fresh Fruits and Vegetables

The Toddler 2 children continue to enjoy their weekly group snack of fresh fruit and vegetables provided by their wonderful classroom parents! Upper Elementary friends are always kind and helpful assistants. The Toddler 2 students have certainly learned to look forward to Thursdays!


‘Five Brown Buns’

A new Language material accompanies one of the Toddler 2 students' favorite songs, Five Brown Buns. A truly collaborative group activity, this piece of work allows up to six children to work together to act out the beloved rhyme.

Toddler 2- April 26, 2019

Earth Day

The Toddler 2 class welcomed some Lower Elementary students to the playground for an Earth Day planting project this morning. With some help from their older friends, the Toddlers planted their own collection of basil, chive, and cilantro seeds. Accompanied by Upper Elementary's Mr. Henry on guitar, everyone happily sang "The Garden Song" together to celebrate the beginning of spring!


Rainy Days

When a rainy day kept the students inside this week, the Toddlers still found a way to have a ball! They enjoyed the opportunity to play, dance and move energetically in the multipurpose room.


Visiting Primary

As the Toddler 2 students continue to grow and mature, they enjoy increasing opportunities to interact with the wider school community. This week, the Toddlers began their visits to the Primary classrooms, where they enjoyed experimenting with new work and interacting with their older friends. They are free to spend as much or as little time as they like in the new environment, and are always full of pride when they return to the Toddler classroom. They are already looking forward to being "big kids" next year!

Toddler 2 - April 18, 2019

Nesting Eggs

The Toddler students have been eager to tackle the challenge of opening and closing a collection of nesting Easter eggs this week. This activity requires excellent fine motor skills, as well as patience, persistence, concentration and hand-eye coordination. It also encourages the additional skill of color sorting, as they match each colorful pompom to its corresponding small and large egg.


Exploring Seeds

The T2 class is celebrating spring by exploring how seeds grow into plants. This week, we discussed how every plant needs water, sunlight, and soil to grow. We started by setting up dry kidney beans in tiny "greenhouses" of damp paper towels inside of plastic bags, taped to the outside door to get plenty of sun. Over the next few days, we will watch our seeds carefully to see how they begin to sprout!

Toddler 2 - April 12, 2019

Cylinder Boxes

The Cylinder Boxes are a Montessori Sensorial material that helps the young child learn to grade objects according to size. Toddler 2 students worked on the yellow Cylinder Box, which requires them to first sort the cylinders from largest to smallest and then carefully stack them into a tower. This activity requires thoughtful use of the visual sense, as well as good fine motor coordination to build the tower successfully.


Group Snack

The Toddler 2 students continued to enjoy our weekly group snack with fresh food provided by their supportive classroom parents! The children recently enjoyed exploring red, yellow and orange bell peppers: They had the opportunity to look inside the pepper, feel the seeds, smell the scent and of course taste the sweet and delicious fruit.


Scissor Skills

A new piece of work in the Toddler 2 classroom is cutting paper strips with small scissors. This challenging work requires eye-hand coordination, hand strength and coordination of several fine motor skills. It often interests and absorb Toddlers for long periods of time and can be easily adapted for the home environment. With a pair of child-appropriate scissors, a bowl and a supply of thin pieces of construction paper, many children will happily spend fifteen minutes or more carefully cutting the paper strips to pieces. They find great satisfaction in this work, and the resulting pieces are later used to make collages and other art projects.


Silhouette Matching

Toddler 2 students are using the new silhouette matching work from their Sensorial area. Having carefully laid out the cards showing the silhouettes of a variety of objects, the children match the corresponding objects to their shapes. This activity encourages visual discrimination and helps the children to understand the relationship between a three-dimensional object and the two-dimensional representation of that object on the card.


Picture Stories

Toddler 2 children are working on picture stories, a new activity in the Language area of the classroom this week. To use this work, a child chooses an interesting picture from a basket and glues it onto a piece of blank paper. Then, he or she narrates a story about the picture, which the teacher transcribes using the student's exact words. This encourages speech development, builds vocabulary and gives the Toddlers an opportunity to be creative "writers" before they are developmentally able to write themselves.

Toddler 2 - April 5, 2019

Signs of Spring

The Toddler 2 students were excited to notice signs of spring, despite the chilly weather! On walks to the playground, they love to point out birds singing in their nests, flowers blooming and trees growing new leaves. In the classroom, they created cherry blossom collages to welcome the season. The children love to squish squares of pink crepe paper into "flowers," which they glue on to a picture of a bare tree.


Group Snack Project

The Toddler 2 community was excited to begin their new group snack project last week, organized and supported by their wonderful classroom parents! The children adored using fresh ingredients to make delicious spinach and banana smoothies. They were especially lucky to have the assistance of two helpful Upper Elementary students, who helped their young friends to make and serve the tasty treats. The whole process was a joyful experience for the young students!

Toddler 2 - March 15, 2019

Grizzly Bear

The Toddler 2 students learned about how animals survive the winter through a new picture book called "Migrate, Hibernate, and Adapt." Then, they had a chance to explore the process of hibernation for themselves by crawling into their cave and "sleeping" until springtime. While someone “hibernates”, their friends will often gather around the cave to sing the "Grizzly Bear" song until they wake up. This new activity was very popular this week and the children particularly enjoyed roaring like an angry bear when they came out of the cave! Learning a concept through a variety of experiences - reading, singing and whole-body exploration - helps the child to retain the new information and appeals to different children's varied learning styles.


A Warm Place to Hibernate

Some Toddler 2 students applied their newfound knowledge of hibernation to their imaginative play scenarios. Several children used the wooden blocks to make caves for the collection of small bears and then helped the bears to find a warm and cozy place to hibernate for the winter.

Toddler 2 - March 8, 2019

The Classroom Community

As the Toddler 2 students have matured over the course of the school year, their social awareness has blossomed as well. The Montessori classroom is truly a community for young children, who find countless ways to interact throughout the day. In these pictures, you can see friends collaborating on the “Bring Me” game, working side-by-side with the art materials, clapping and singing as they take turns on the "jumping square" and tackling cleaning tasks together. They have come to rely on each others' unique skills, as well: everyone knows who to ask for help in identifying the animals in the Chinese paper-cut pictures, or which friends are happy to demonstrate yoga poses to their peers. It has been a joy to see the children find such happiness and meaning from their classroom friendships.

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