Why is LePort Montessori for toddlers more than just childcare?
See for yourself in this short video.
What and How We Teach
Individualized attention, and lots of time to explore
The Montessori toddler classrooms are simpler and slower paced than the Montessori preschool rooms for three to six year olds. Tables and chairs are smaller and the teacher-child ratio is lower (1:6 or 1:7 all the way to 36 months.) The atmosphere is positive, supportive and non-competitive – and includes a lot of singing and physical movement. The toddler Montessori materials are specifically structured to meet the developmental needs of toddlers and to support their need for purposeful activity. The Montessori toddler classroom focuses on two main areas, language development and acquiring skills for independence and social interactions, supplemented by select, simplified Sensorial materials.
Toddler age children have a special sensitivity for learning language they hear spoken around them. The toddler classroom offers many creative and intriguing linguistic concepts to expand their growing vocabularies. By participating in conversations, listening to stories, classifying objects and learning songs and poems, they nurture their budding language skills.
Older toddlers even get introduced to phonetic awareness through games that ask them to isolate and repeat beginning sounds of words—an advanced skill often taught in kindergarten in other settings!
A Simple, Orderly Environment, with a Clear, Consistent Structure and Limited Choices
Dr. Montessori realized that much of the toddler’s uncontrollable emotions (tantrums included) come from being out of control – and especially from being in an environment not suited to his needs. Thus, our classrooms are child-sized – and, equally importantly, orderly. A child knows, every day, what to expect when – and where to find his favorite activity. We also offer him limited choices, so he can choose without being overwhelmed.
Skills for Independence
A toddler spends a large amount of time learning the self-help skills that lead to independence from constant adult help. In our classrooms, we facilitate this development in several ways.
Special “practical life” exercises break down daily tasks into manageable steps, and enable repeated practice to achieve mastery. Toddlers often are in a frustrating position: they want to do things for themselves, but do not know how. Many tantrums can be avoided by enabling a child to do things for himself at a time when he is eager to do so.
Thus, we offer our toddlers endless opportunities to practice daily tasks – from pouring (first, with solid objects, like beans, then rice, then water) to sorting; from washing a table to watering plants; from dressing themselves in simple clothes (including showing them how to put on a jacket using a trick we call the “Montessori throw,” where the child positions the jacket in front of him where he can see it, puts his hands into the sleeves, then flips the jacket over his head) to mastering buttons, bows and zippers. By performing one step at a time, a child is easily able to master new skills, giving her a great sense of personal achievement and pride.
The crown jewel of the independence curriculum is our elaborate snack routine. Parents regularly comment how they are amazed that 2 ½ year olds can independently serve, jointly eat, and clean up after their daily snack.
Social Skills Development Through Role Modeling and Language Development
We gently guide your child to develop the bedrock skills he needs to live together peacefully with other children and adults. We guide him to hang up his own jacket or apron, and put back a work in its proper place in the shelf. We encourage him to problem-solve rather than say “I can’t.” Because children this age have a strong tendency to imitate what they see, our teachers constantly model appropriate social skills, good manners and consideration for others. Our skilled teachers also show your child how to use words to identify the feelings they experience in themselves and that they see in others. In these ways we are able to help smooth their initial social interactions.
Sensorial and Gross Motor Activities
Our toddler classrooms also contain a selection of simpler Sensorial exercises – such as simplified Knobbed cylinders, puzzles and stacking exercises – which help the children in developing their fine motor skills and their abilities to observe and solve problems.
Our teachers lead the children in song, dance and a variety of other exercises that offer them the opportunity to jump, climb, balance, crawl or skip, and this exercises their large muscles.
Trained, Caring Montessori Teachers, Not Just Childcare Providers
Childcare centers often have high staff turnover: low-paid, poorly trained childcare providers rarely view their job as a career. Not so at LePort: we recruit, train and retain highly trained Montessori teachers. Each of our head toddler teachers has either already completed the intensive, AMI Assistant to Infancy training when she joins LePort, or we train her in-house, as an assistant teacher, and then sponsor her for the full Montessori training while she works for us. At LePort, teaching toddlers is a career, not a passing childcare job.
A well-trained, well-compensated, steady staff is essential at LePort: we don’t just want your child to be in a safe, fun childcare setting; we want him to learn and grow by leaps and bounds!
Unlike other childcare centers, we believe you should see who teaches your child: that’s why we list all of our staff, with their photos and bios, on each of our campus pages.
“I couldn’t be happier” – “Highly recommend it”
LePort parents love their experience at school! Watch the campus videos on our video gallery to see what parents say about our seven Southern California campuses. Here are some parent reviews; we encourage you to also explore online and read through what parents say on review sites like GreatSchools.net, Google Places and Yelp.
We are so pleased that we chose LePort Huntington Beach for our son! As a Montessori child myself and with a mom who owns a Montessori school, we had very high expectations. It amazes me to see the independence my son has gained over the past 7 months and how he has blossomed since being enrolled at LePort. I have nothing but great things to say about this school, and would highly recommend it.
My 2 1/2 year old has been going to this school – AND SHE LOVES IT!!!!! As parents, we are so glad we decided to put her in this school. Our daughter was previously at another Montessori, and this one is SO MUCH BETTER.
Both of my kids attend LePort in Huntington Beach and I couldn’t be happier to have found such a great school for them. My 2.5 year old had a hard time when she started, but I received a phone call almost every day for the first few weeks giving me updates and ensuring me she was fine. I even received pictures of her doing work in class!
My son has been attending LePort since the age of 20 months. He started in the toddler class, after only a few months we notice how much independence and confidence he was showing. He is now 3 1/2 and has transitioned to the primary class with great ease. The teachers show genuine affection towards all the kids there. He loves going to class everyday and looks forward to seeing his friends and all the staff. The school has a great outdoor space for the kids. They also offer after school activities, which are great. The head teacher is lovely, very easy to talk to. Communication with all the staff is great. You can easily call to check on your child. This is really a wonderful school!
Cannot say enough good things about LePort’s Irvine San Marino campus! We absolutely love this school. Our son has been enrolled there for about 6 months in the toddler classroom. The advancements he’s made in that time have really blown us away. It is so cute to see him learning to be responsible for himself and his things at such a young age. Love the teachers and the office staff. Everyone is friendly and helpful and always make a point of greeting each child by name. They definitely care about the child as an individual and work with parents directly to help the children advance. Have no doubt that the skills he is learning here will go a long way at whatever point we transition him to a traditional school. We are planning to keep him (and his younger sister on the way) at LePort as long as possible!
As a dad of 2-year-old son, I wasn’t sure what is good or bad for my son in the school. But, what my son got from class was way beyond my expectation. Within few weeks of his class, the teachers gained my trust, belief and respect. At some point I even felt my son was in good care, equal to being in his mom’s hand. My son’s teacher even helped us to identify his hearing loss symptom, which we would not have noticed. I sincerely recommend the school premises and the teachers for the new parents who are going to send their little ones to the school.
My son attends LePort’s pre-primary program [at LePort’s Huntington Beach campus.] I’ve seen how Mrs. Chung encourages and motivates his independence; my son is doing things at home that I did not believe a 2 year-old was capable of doing! My son wants to take care of himself and his environment while being organized and minding his surroundings. Mrs. Chung has motivated him to use the bathroom properly in addition to speaking in full sentences thus properly conveying his emotions and needs. I am so happy to have found LePort and Mrs. Chung; my son cannot wait to get to school in the morning and I see how much he has learned and grown. LePort Huntington Harbor and Mrs. Chung have truly made a difference in our life!
My daughter has been coming [to the LePort Irvine Spectrum campus] since she was 18 months and she has loved it every day. She is always excited to go to class. The pre-primary teachers are great! They are nurturing yet still will enforce polite and courteous behavior. The staff is always available and quick to respond to questions. They also offer many opportunities for parent involvement to learn not only more about what sets their school apart from other schools but also to learn more about the Montessori Method. Overall, a great school!
My son stared going to [LePort Huntington Beach] when he was 18 months old, he started out in Mrs. Chung’s class where she was able to guide him and I am grateful that she was his first teacher. She made me feel like my son was the most important child that was in her class. I was so impressed that not only did his teachers know my sons name but all the staff knew who he was and also knew my name. I loved the fact that they always said good morning to both of us by name. I have had my son in two Montessori schools now and hands down this campus is wonderful. Welcoming, caring, comforting… Thank you for making me feel that my child was the most important child there.
My husband and I had extensively researched schools offering the official Montessori Method. We decided to enroll our son in LePort’s Lake campus based on our interviews with and tours of different schools and campuses. Unlike other Montessori schools, LePort’s Montessori Method program is geared towards children as young as 18 months old. Their campuses are clean and well kept. They have strict sign-in and sign-out procedures in place for the children’s safety, and they are diligent in issuing any “ouch” or injury reports to keep the parents fully apprised of any incidents involving their children. All classrooms have the official Montessori Method materials. Because the children are always engaged in lessons, we felt confident that we were not leaving our child at a standard daycare facility or baby factory. From our interactions with other parents, it appears that the LePort parents have similar values regarding their children’s education. Our son has attended LePort’s Lake campus since he was 18 months old. We have been very pleased with our son’s teachers and assistant teachers. They are excellent at what they do, and we feel that our son has benefited tremendously from their guidance (and patience!). The teachers and staff keep an open line of communication with us, and they always welcome and take into account parent input, which we truly appreciate. Over the past year, we have seen our son blossom, and it is a testament to the quality of teachers and the program at LePort.
I am a mom of a preprimary student at the Irvine Lake campus. I am a homemaker as of now, love to spend my time with my family; and also have an experience of 7 years of teaching this gentle age group. It was for this reason that I was so reluctant in selecting a school which would best serve my child to create love for her education. On the day of enrollment, I spent about half hour with Ms. Lucia Tompkins, Head of School, discussed my view points and shared hers. I conveyed that how important it is for me and my husband to see our child well behaved and well mannered, more than anything! Love and respect for others is what we want to inculcate in our child. Our daughter joined Ms. Kim and Ms. Anabella’s class. Both the teachers are so calm and loving with the children. Also to mention, my daughter was a very picky eater and her teachers taught her how to sit and eat independently. I still remember, the first few days of school, how many calls a day I used to make at the reception to make sure my child was fine and they always used to respond happily and always answer your questions with a smile! I am so thankful to the teachers and the school for the loving support they’ve given throughout. I am quite confident that as my child is surrounded by loving and caring staff of LePort; she will turn out to be a good human being!
Our son started at LePort’s Lake Campus in their toddler class when he was18 months old. We were thrilled with his first teacher, Ms. Ana and her assistant teachers Ms. Anabella, and Ms. Maricela . After he moved up to his Primary class with Ms. Dias, we had the opportunity to observe the classroom and were impressed with her teaching style. Ms. Dias and her assistant teacher, Ms. Kang, are patient and caring, and they seem to have a close connection with their students. Ms. Dias is both stern and nurturing at the same time, and it is apparent how much her students respect and learn from her. Recently, our son took an accidental tumble at home. He spilled his drink all over the floor and was crying because he had hurt himself. Although he had not stopped sobbing from the pain, he automatically got up, retrieved some paper towels, and proceeded to clean up his mess. This self-discipline is an example of the influence that Ms. Dias and the Montessori method have had over him. We recently asked him what he thought about Ms. Dias. He said, “I like her because she loves me.” I don’t know how much they pay her but it is not enough.