Dr. Maria Montessori studied the developing child and identified that during the period from birth to age 3 is when your child’s brain develops more rapidly than at any other time, and more learning takes place than at any other stage of development. We recognize this power and have created a space that allows your child to fulfil their potential in the most harmonious way possible.
4 to 14 months
The Nido (Italian for "nest"), is a Montessori classroom that accommodates non-mobile or crawling infants. Since the ideal environment for this age group is the home environment, the Nido tries to replicate this atmosphere in a way that acknowledges your infant’s need to explore in a safe way.
This environment includes developmentally appropriate furniture and materials, that your child is naturally drawn to, and can freely explore in the presence of highly-trained, nurturing, respectful adults. Some of our specially designed furniture includes bars for pulling up, mirrors to reflect body movement, and a sleeping area with individual floor beds/mats, and child-sized tables and chairs rather than high chairs.
Here your child can build a strong foundation of trust in environment and trust in self, allowing them to grow into secure children with strong self-esteem. Their natural curiosity, desire to explore, and discover their world with a sense of wonder - comes alive here. Their sense of self grows as they establish independence that comes from being able to feed themselves, dress themselves, crawl, walk, run etc.
“All that we ourselves are has been made
by the child, by the child we were in the
first two years of our lives.”
- Dr. Maria Montessori
A Typical Day in the Nido
1. Social Skills: Toddlers want to make their adaptation into larger society, as Montessori put it - the purpose of childhood is adaptation. These Early experiences are deeply impressionistic and set the stage determining (to a great capacity) the kind of children/adults they grow into.
Our environments support this need and natural tendency by offering the appropriate experiences to develop “Grace And Courtesy”, social intelligence, and empathy. Working in a “Mixed Age” community plays a huge role in the development of social skills.
3. Fine Motor Skills & Hand-Eye Coordination: Infants enjoy purposeful activities, they like to contribute towards their environment and self. This is a wonderful opportunity for the school to guide the development of their fine (coordinated small muscle movements in the hands, wrists, and fingers) and hand-eye coordination (the use of the eyes to guide movements), through “Practical Life Activities”.
Actions that involve grasping, reaching and releasing an object, and turning the wrist allow children to participate in their world. The action of picking up objects with small tongs or tweezers develops a child’s pincer grip, which is a necessary precursor for learning how to write later on.
4. Care of Environment & Self: Infants in our environment are developing skills such as language, concentration, problem solving, visual discrimination, physical coordination, and motor development through “Practical Life Activities”.
These can be divided for your understanding into: a. self-care objectives like developing toilet awareness, and independence in maintaining personal hygiene. (Our infants grow to wash their hands, eat independently, cooperate with the adult for toileting by communicating and start to dress themselves etc.) b. Care of Environment objectives employ gross motor activities that allow children to contribute towards their environment. Eg, Dusting plants, they clean up after meals by drying the table, serve the community by putting their work back.
5. Language: The development of language is one of the primary objectives at this stage. All their work in the environment caters to this. The adult offers vocabulary at every step of the way. Attaching meaning to the words becomes easy when the children are holistically involved in the process.