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Infants (6 wks-18 mos)

The infant environments (6 weeks-18 months)offered at our locations embody Maria Montessori’s vision of a “Nido” or nest. They are peaceful, loving places where babies can explore and feel secure. Teachers speak in gentle tones, the daily pace is unhurried, and the décor is understated and homelike. Each child in our care is an individual to be nurtured with affection and respect. As is customary for Montessori environments, every detail is selected with the child’s whole development in mind.

A child’s early years are a time of great sensitivity to bonding to establish trust in the world; language, order, sensorial impressions, and development of coordinated movement, both fine- and gross-motor. Each of our Infant rooms supports the child’s development of movement, independence, and capacity for active exploration. Because an infant’s brain is wired for language acquisition, our environments offer rich opportunities for babies to learn through plenty of reading, singing, sign language and a running dialogue as your child’s caregivers explain the events of your child’s day. Our respect for each child shows by how we engage him in each care-giving activity with warm eye-contact and verbal explanations of each step, rather than merely just doing the tasks to the child.

In our tranquil Infant environments, there are special mobiles and images to stimulate brain development and a variety of tactile objects for children to explore. Because this is the period when infants learn to roll over, sit, scoot, crawl, and potentially walk, the room has many opportunities for movement. There are striking differences between a Montessori Infant environment and other, more traditional daycare settings: our babies do not spend their active hours in playpens, jumpers, walkers, or other containers. Instead, in our Infant rooms you will see…

  • Many soft floor mats and bolsters on which babies can move freely and develop gross motor skills.
  • Mirrors positioned close to the floor to stimulate tummy time and self-discovery.
  • Low bars mounted to the wall and soft furniture for children to pull themselves up.
  • Interesting mobiles, grasping objects, and rattles within reach.

For the older infants, where crawling and newly walking babies have their hands free for exploration, you will see…

  • Low shelving with materials for fine motor development and cause/effect, such as puzzles, rings on a post, and containers to open and close.
  • Opportunities for purposeful water play.
  • A stair with low steps and a railing to practice climbing up and down.
  • Pull and push toys to promote gross motor movement.

We’ve created an environment we’d love to see our own babies in every day—one where an infant will find warmth, stimulation, and safety, and where a parent will be informed and respected, We hope you agree, and we invite you to tour one of our schools, and see a Montessori infant classroom at its best, in action.