Infant

Our Infant Program enrolls children that are 6 weeks to 12 months.

Curriculum Summary

infant

Our goal in this age group is to provide a safe and nurturing environment where children are active in the learning process.

During the infant stage, all children depend on responsive, secure relationships to develop and learn. The best way to help infants grow into curious, confident, able learners is to give them consistent care in a warm environment so that they can form secure attachments to their caregivers.

During the first 6 months of life, infants slowly gain information about the world around them. Infants younger than 6 months depend on their caregivers for their daily experiences. From the quality interactions your infant’s caregiver has with them, individual lesson plans are developed to ensure that age appropriate development and learning objectives are being met. Our caregivers work closely with parents to develop an appropriate eating and sleeping schedule to ensure your infant’s health and development.

INFANT CURRICULUM

The infant program emphasizes the development of infants’ emerging physical, sensory-motor, perceptual, cognitive, language and social-emotional skills and is guided by three distinctive features; caregiving, attachment and play.

Caregiving

Caregiving provides the context through which much of the infants’ learning takes place. Careful attention given to promoting infant well-being and comfort through caregiving tasks and routines.

Attachment

Infant attachment with a familiar caregiver who is sensitive and responsive forms the basis for developing trust, emotional security and well-being.

Play

Play is central to the daily routine of the infant program. Play creates opportunities and the context for infants to observe and learn about the world, promotes important skills in cognition, language, physical, social and emotional learning.

GOALS AND OBJECTIVES

Children learn at their own pace, though most move through similar developmental stages. Even in groups of children close in age, you will find a lot of variation in children’s capabilities and interests. Our Infant program supports effective teaching practices and opportunities for discovery and learning through the following skill domains:

COGNITIVE / LANGUAGE

Learning Goals

  • Learn that certain behaviors bring same responses (cause and effect)
  • Realize that objects not seen can still exist (the beginning of reason)
  • Use of positive responses by adults when a new skill is performed helps the infant gain confidence in ability to learn
  • Learn by interactions with caregiver and through activities going on nearby
  • Two-way communication teaches that words have meaning and that people will respond to infant’s sounds

Activities

  • Pay attention to infant’s moods, responding to cries/sounds
  • Mimic the sound the infant makes
  • Peek-a-boo, patty cake, hide and seek
  • Nesting or interlocking toys that can be taken apart and put back together
  • Toys with sound and visual effects
  • Talking, singing, reading on a daily basis to infant
  • Use cardboard picture books with large illustrations, puppets, a variety of music, finger plays
  • Expand on sounds, maintain eye contact, and use gestures as well as words to communicate

PHYSICAL

Learning Goals

  • Develop awareness of own body
  • Develop small and large motor skills by learning to control body muscles and learning to pick up things and hold them
  • Develop awareness of own environment

Activities

  • Mobiles on the crib or mirrors, musical toys, colored pictures at infant’s eye level and toys in the room all provide the stimulation your infant needs
  • Teething rings, sucking toys, rattles, things to reach and grab, squeeze toys to stimulate sucking, grasping, and motor skills
  • Push and pull toys, riding equipment, bouncing gently on caregivers lap, rolling on a vinyl mat provides exercise for arms and legs and develops gross motor skills
  • Containers to put things into and take out of, large cubes to crawl into
  • Carrying infant around to different parts of the child care area increases awareness of the environment

SOCIAL / EMOTIONAL

Learning Goals

  • Become socially interactive
  • Develop trust, love and security
  • Develop and maintain trusting relationship with primary caregiver

Activities

  • Be consistent and responsive to infant
  • Hold, cuddle, hug, smile, laugh
  • Talk, sing and read to infant frequently, especially during feeding and diaper changes
  • Imitate and respond appropriately to infant’s sounds
  • Develop predictable routines, familiar songs and personal games for infants
  • Keep familiar objects around

SELF-HELP

Learning Goals

  • Develop trust and security if needs are met consistently
  • Older infant begins to develop self-esteem and independence

Activities

  • Encourage older infants to feed self and drink from cup with a top
  • Meet the needs of baby consistently (feeding, diapering, sleeping, nurturing)
  • Encourage exploration so that the infant can experience new things

*Resources: Better Brains for Babies/Learning Vision/California Infant/Toddler Curriculum framework