Early Childhood Developmental Nurturance Program
6 weeks – 18 months
Babies live in a brand-new world, and they are utterly dependent upon the people around them to help them learn and to meet all their needs.
At Stepping Stone School, our sensitive, experienced teachers welcome you and your baby into a warm, safe, clean, low-ratio environment, and day by day, create a trusting relationship with parents and infants alike.
Our teachers’ one-on-one interactions with infants are natural and spontaneous, with an understanding that all interactions are opportunities to connect and stimulate your child’s development. Holding, soothing, establishing eye contact, playing, singing, talking and responding vocally all help create an engaging and nurturing experience for your baby.
Babies grow and change quickly, so consistent and frequent communication with parents is key. Teachers prepare daily detailed reports with your child’s eating, sleeping, diapering and developmental activities. And effective communication works both ways – your child’s teachers welcome your feedback and are happy to offer insight into whatever concerns you might have.
- speak to your baby clearly and calmly;
- refer to your child by name;
- repeat sounds your child makes;
- name objects your infant sees or picks up;
- acknowledge your child’s feelings or sounds; and
- introduce and regularly use American Sign Language [ASL]. Research shows that children as young as six months can begin making signs to communicate needs, and that signing enhances verbal language acquisition.
Our play areas provide:
- clean, comfortable, open floor space for wiggling, turning and rolling;
- a variety of textured toys made especially for tiny hands, to help with dexterity, eye-hand coordination, grasping and sensory stimulation;
- plenty of safe structures for crawling, pulling up and standing, climbing or walking;
- many opportunities for independent exploration, encouraged through praise and gentle practice; and
- soothing music [classical is a favorite], and lots of singing.
- respect and support your child’s expression of feelings;
- nurture your baby with genuinely cheerful smiles and comforting hugs; and
- always care for every child with prompt, personal and sensitive responses to their needs, feelings and discoveries.
We nurture the natural curiosity that helps build your child’s brain with:
- highly trained teachers who know how to engage your baby’s mind;
- a variety of cause-and-effect toys;
- many opportunities to explore sights, sounds, textures and emotions; and
- encouragement of discovery through verbal praise.