Categorising and labelling is a necessary part of life, however we need to be careful in how we use them when talking about children's care and development. Every child is unique and will develop in different areas at different speeds to his/her peers. As such, the care and development of children should not be based upon their age but through observing them as individuals.
Here at Oaks Park we try to limit labelling except to acknowledge the key stages of early years development: Babies, Toddlers and Young Children.
- Babies - A baby is typically defined as an infant who is yet to walk. Some children walk as early as nine months and some decide they do not want to walk until they are 18 months old. To learn more about babies and their development click here.
- Toddlers - The toddler stage ranges from nine months through to 36 months. During this time the freedom imparted by walking makes the toddler energetic and curious. They crave order and freedom to choose, as they explore practical life skills, motor skills and language. To learn more about toddler and their development click here.
- Young Children - The final phase before a child starts school (reception) is as a young child. Anywhere from 30 months onwards you will start to notice that your child starts to develop more self-control, becomes more conscious of the needs of others, is more sociable and has an increase in intellectual curiosity. It is at this point that children start to show an interest in more complex language, mathematics, sensory exploration and wants to understand the world around them. To learn more about young children and their development click here.
Despite her father's resistance and armed with her mother's support, Dr. Maria Montessori graduated with high honors from the medical school of the University of Rome in 1896. In so doing, Montessori became the first female doctor in Italy.