Discoverers

Through the Reggio Emilia approach to education we understand that throughout childhood, including infancy, humans are natural investigators, as well as competent and active learners. The Discovery Room here at Charlotte Children’s Center serves to incorporate individual personalities, promote investigation of the self, the material world and emergent relationships through a responsive curriculum centered on a holistic approach to each child and by extension their family. 

Atmosphere: 

  • Low teacher : child ratio allows for building deeper connections with teachers as primary caregivers
    • We offer a maximum enrollment of 2 teachers : 6 infants 
  • Predictable routines allow infants to feel safe and secure, and build the foundations for a sense of stability 
    • Each routine begins as  a mirror to the one began at home, gradually infants are transitioned into a group model which lends to the transition into the next classroom
  • Teachers incorporate soft, soothing tones and music to encourage infants to explore language acquisition and social development 
    • Children are spoken to lovingly throughout the day particularly during transitional actions (feeding, changing, clean up) to maintain their agency and promote communication 
    • Infants are taught and encouraged to use basic sign language which allows them to gain self confidence, decrease frustration and feel valued in their space

Environment:

The Reggio Emilia approach places a bright focus on space as an active engagement in the educational experience of young children. For infants we maintain a sensory environment that allows them to experience colors, textures, range of motion and a balance between ‘quiet’ and ‘noisy’ throughout the course of their play. Our materials are rotated on a semi-regular basis offering stability and novelty in response to each individual’s needs. 

Our bay window offers amazing access to natural light and decor around the classroom focuses on our nature oriented philosophy. Bringing ‘outside’ materials into the space allows infants to experience beauty through natural items. In almost all weather we traverse the outdoors and we utilize strollers as well as our playground to bring the infants outside each and every day. 

 Infants as Natural Learners:

Through early childhood, beginning in infancy, children are driven to understand the world around them. Teachers serve as guides, partners and caregivers in this stage to allow individualized learning experiences unique to each child. 

Infants are encouraged to:

  • Make independent play choices from appropriate materials that promote all regions of educational development 
    • Social/Emotional:
      • Recognizing different vocal tones; noticing emotional cues through facial expressions; exploring materials in proximity to peers
    • Language:
      • Reading, singing and sign language allow infants to begin responding to and picking up language skills
    • Physical
      • Early infancy develops muscle tone through tummy time, stretching on the floor and grasping materials 
      • Expanding into toddlerhood infants are encouraged to use leverage to pull themselves up, begin to crawl and roll over
    • Cognitive
      • Predictable schedules, materials and environments allow infants to develop emergent reasoning skills and object permanence 
  • Interact directly with their surroundings, peers and caregivers
    • We promote health and safety through close supervision; frequent handwashing, sanitation and cleanliness practices 

Skills are introduced as an individual is displaying readiness, teachers utilize observations and documentations of each child to determine their next step in offering curriculum to promote skill building at the appropriate time. 

Group Schedule:

*Upon entering the program we work closely with your family to mirror the schedule your infant is accustomed to (eat when they’re hungry, sleep when they’re tired). As your child grows more comfortable in our space and with their caregivers we will help you transition to a group schedule: 

7:30-9:00 Free Exploration; Diaper Changes

9:00 Snack/Bottles

9:30 First Nap (if applicable)

10:00 Outside Play or Project Exploration; Diaper Changes

11: 30 Lunch/Bottles

12:00 Diaper Changes; Second Nap 

2:00 Diaper Changes; Snack/Bottles

2:30 Free Exploration 

3:30 Third Nap (if applicable)

4:00 Diaper Changes; Outside Play/Free Exploration

Meal Time:

Meal time is a great time to strengthen the bond between infant and caregiver, as well as promote social skill building with peers! As your child begins to eat solid food we will keep close communication with what you have served at home.