Infant Toddler Curriculum
Developmental domains are one way to describe and think about the different aspects of development in the areas of: motional; physical, social, cognitive; and language skills of young children. And while we use the domains as a way to organize our thinking and observations of children, in reality all domains are function together simultaneously, especially in the first three years of life. This holistic development is separated into the developmental domains for the purpose of observation, study, developmental assessment, and planning (Blackboard, 2013). Therefore, it is important to understand how the developmental domains relate to the three themes of infant development; in order to provide DAP care and activities for children in each stage of arly childhood development. For instance, an understanding of the young infant stage, babies develop a sense of security from their caregivers. It is this sense of security, that allows the baby to build an urge to explore, later motivating them to take risks and advance their current knowledge of their environment. This may require removing all sharp objects from the area and covering electrical outlets and ensuring.
However, prepping the room for child safety is not the only concern. It is imperative to play close attention, and respond to the needs of young infants. Nery oung children need adults who listen, smile, and talk with them or babble when they babble; watch for when they need quiet and solitude; and notice and communicate pleasure over such newfound skills as creeping, climbing, holding, dropping, or adding new sounds and words (Greenman, Stonehouse, and Schweikert, 2008, pg. 61). ” An understanding of the mobile stage of development will make one aware of the safety precautions needed to allow mobile toddlers to explore the environment.
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Mobile infants often explore by mouthing and must be protected from small parts and fragile toys. In addition a rich learning environment for mobile nfants should include safe structures to climb and explore. “Moving around is essential to learning; it gives babies different perspective and vantage points, which they need in order to move from an entirely egocentric view of space toward a more sophisticated sense ot relationship between selt, space, and other people (Greenman, Stonehouse, and Schweikert, 2008, pg. 53). An understanding of the toddler stage of development enables caring adults to guide and assist young children’s emotional development. The first two years of a person’s life can set the foundation for the way hey create relationships, view others, and understand emotions and how to control them. “A toddler’s sense of self, of I and me, emerge in a group environment and a culture which private property and the acquisition of things are somewhat scared. This makes the learning of related concepts like mine particularly challenging (Greenman, Stonehouse, and Schweikert, 2008, pg. 9). ” “Toddlers learn about who they are in the world through relationships and experiences with adults who care for them. They learn to trust that their needs will be met, or that they will not. The motional domain includes the infant’s perception of herself and of herself in relation to others. “(Blackboard, 2013). The most important thing a caregiver can do to help a toddler’s emotional development is to create a safe and loving environment for the toddler to learn in. Caregivers should understand that each toddler is different and has different needs.
Attending to each individual child in a well-organized and inviting learning environment is essential during his stage early childhood development. Infant Toddler Curriculum “Because of the specific needs of infants and toddlers the term curriculum is during he early stages of development is complex. To summarize all of the ideas of curriculum, as defined by leaders in the field (Gonzalez-Mena, Eyer, Dodge, Greenman, Stonehouse, Schwikert, Swim, and Watson), you must think about curriculum as an organized framework.
To make curriculum DAP for infant and toddlers, it must be based on sound and relevant knowledge such as infant/ toddler development and research; so that it guides early care professional practices in providing purposeful and responsive learning opportunities for each child through daily routines and experiences (Blackboard, 2013) ” “Infant and toddler curriculum plans focus on how to best create a social, emotional, and intellectual climate that supports child-initiated and child-pursued learning.
The interests of the child and the belief that each child has a curriculum are what drive practice (Blackboard, 2013)”. It is understood that very young children need to play a significant role in selecting their learning experiences, materials, and content. Curriculum plans, therefore, do not focus on games, tasks, or activities, but on how to best create a social, emotional, and intellectual climate that supports child-initiated and child- ursued learning and the building and sustaining of positive relationships among adults and children. Responsive curriculum planning focuses on finding strategies to help infant-toddler teachers search for, support, and keep alive children’s internal motivation to learn, and their spontaneous explorations of people and things of interest and importance to them (Blackboard, 2013). ” This should begin with study of the specific children in care. “Detailed records of each child’s interests and skills are kept to give guidance to the adults for the roles they will take in each child’s learning Greenman, Stonehouse, and Schweikert, 2008, pg. 30). ” It should also be realized from the start that plans should not be static.
Adaptation and change are critical parts of the learning process and should be anticipated. “Once an interaction with a child or small cluster of children begins, the teacher has to be ready to adapt his or ner plans and actions so they work tor all children, no matter what kind ot physical , mental or emotional challenges individual bring to the program (Greenman, Stonehouse, and Schweikert, 2008, pg. 30). ” Another essential component of planning s attention to a responsive learning environment and specific attention to how environments should be changed.
The planning of learning environments is more important to infant-toddler development than specific lessons or specific activities. “The environment must be seen as part of the curriculum, creating interest and encouraging and supporting exploration (Blackboard, 2013). ” Research has shown that much of how infants and toddlers learn best comes not from specific adult- directed lessons but from teachers knowing how to maximize opportunities for each child to use natural learning inclinations.
The philosophy of routine care as learning opportunities for infants and toddlers is based on the premise that, “Relationships develop through all kinds of interactions, but especially during ones that happen while adults are carrying out those essential activities of daily living sometimes called caregiving routines (Greenman, Stonehouse, and Schweikert, 2008, pg. 5)”, such as: feeding, diapering; toilet training/learning; washing; bathing and grooming; dressing; napping. ” For caregiving routines to become curriculum, they can’t be done mechanically.