Montessori Academy’s Infant Program provides a nurturing Montessori environment specifically designed to meet the developmental needs and interests of children aged six weeks to 24 months.
The program itself is separated into three key stages, including: 0-9 months, 9-15 months, and 15-24 months. Each stage reflects the phenomenal physical, emotional, and intellectual development of the child as they absorb all aspects of their environment, language and culture.
As with any Montessori environment, the activities in the Infant Room are carefully set out to invite the child to discover and explore. Each material is introduced to the child at the appropriate time based on observations of their individual development.
The Montessori infant materials are set out in such a way that children can use them with minimal assistance from an adult. This allows young children to complete and repeat tasks without interruption interference. In this way, students are able to build their confidence, independence, analytical skills, and concentration span.
The ultimate goal of the Montessori Infant Program is to holistically nurture and support each child’s unique learning opportunities as they undertake the important work of forming their intelligence and personality.
The first stage of the Infant Program lays the foundation for future learning by developing a broad range of skills that foster independence, concentration, muscular strength and sensory awareness.
The core focus of the 0-9 Month Infant Program is to provide infants with opportunities to freely explore their environment, practice moving, and establish positive relationships with their teachers and peers.
Montessori materials used during this portion of the program include grasping and reaching mobiles, rattles, sensory boards, treasure baskets, sound bottles, and the shapes board.
From 9-15 months, the infant’s development is remarkable, as they gain greater control over how they think, communicate, and move.
The materials introduced to this age group assist children in reaching their developmental milestones by helping them develop their psychomotor skills, hand-eye coordination, muscular strength, social and language skills, and visual and sensory discrimination.
Typical Montessori materials for this age group include object permanence boxes, discs on a dowel, colour sorting, imbucare boxes, language cards, counting activities, matching activities, shape sorting, stacking blocks, nesting cups and puzzles.
The third and final stage of the Infant Program prepares the young child to transition to the Prepared Environment where they will participate in the structured Montessori Toddler and Preschool Programs.
The Montessori materials for this age group introduce children to practical life activities, such as spooning and pouring, and provide students with extensions opportunities to further refine the skills explored in the earlier programs.
The core focus for children aged 15-24 months is to introduce them to the concept of order, expand their vocabulary, and assist them in developing their ability to concentrate, communicate, work independently, and understand simple sequences.
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