This curriculum guide was created by Dawn Chaffin of Miss Dawn’s Child Care as a resource for parents, teachers, and children. It is an outline of what is expected to be covered throughout the year.


     The primary task of a teacher in a toddler child care is to provide a loving, learning environment as well as a creative curriculum. What, why, and how you do things is the purpose of a curriculum. You may ask, why have a curriculum for children younger than three years old? It is important for young children to have a curriculum because it provides a framework for pulling all of the pieces of developmentally appropriate practice together. It provides the “big picture” of where you want to lead each child and how you can get there.


     All curriculum planning begins with knowing the children-how they grow and develop; what makes them unique. Generally, All toddlers follow a similar path of development, though in their own ways and at their own pace. 


     The activities created for the curriculum will provide children to learn:

  • About their feelings – emotional development.
  • About other people – social development.
  • How to communicate – language development.
  • How to move and do – physical development.
  • How to think – cognitive development.


     The curriculum guide is a living document and may, from time to time, be modified. Please feel free to present any input you have regarding this guide to Miss Dawn. 


     When working with children and education it is always a partnership. Parents, teachers, and children need to continually find ways to work together to maximize each child’s potential.


Toddler Curriculum


     We now know that the first three years of life are more critical to a child’s development than we ever imagined. Research tells us that more rapid brain development takes place during these years than at any other time of life.

     During this period, children are discovering who they are, how others respond to them, and if they are competent. They are also learning how to relate to others, what it means to express their feelings, and whether they are loved. Their brains are being “wired” into patterns for emotional, social, physical, and cognitive development.


The curriculum focuses on activities that will promote children to:

Learn about themselves:

  • To feel valued and attached to others
  • To feel competent and proud about what they can do
  • To assert their independence

Learn about their feelings:

  • To communicate a broad range of emotions through gestures, sounds, and words
  • To express their feelings in appropriate ways

To learn about others:

  • To develop trusting relationships with nurturing adults
  • To show interest in peers
  • To demonstrate caring and cooperation
  • To try roles and relationships through imitation and pretend play.

To learn about communicating:

  • To express needs and thoughts without using words
  • To identify with a home language
  • To respond to verbal and nonverbal commands
  • To communicate through language

To learn about moving and doing:

  • To develop gross motor skills
  • To develop fine motor skills
  • To coordinate eye and hand movements
  • To develop self-help skills

To acquire thinking skills:

  • To gain an understanding of basic concepts and relationships
  • To apply knowledge to new situations
  • To develop strategies for solving problems

Below are the topics that the class focuses on through their daily schedule:


Storytime and Library: 

Through  Storytime and Library  activities, the children will:

  • Develop the ability to tell stories.
  • Develop an enjoyment of good books.
  • Demonstrate ability to follow directions.
  • Develop listening skills.


Through the art activities, the children will:

  • Strengthen fine motor skills in hands and fingers.
  • Develop eye-hand coordination.
  • Develop prewriting skills through the use of paintbrushes, crayons, markers,   and glue bottles.
  • Improve communication skills by identifying colors, shapes, and objects.
  • Enhance their language development through the use of media description of rough/smooth, shiny/dull.


Social Studies: 

Through the social Studies activities, the children will:

  • Develop the ability to answer questions about self and needs.
  • Identify animals, people, and objects.
  • Develop an understanding of how to act in social settings.

Music And Movement:

Performing the Music and Movement activities, the children will: 

  • Have the opportunity to explore feelings, relationships, and various concepts.
  • Promote the development of listening and speaking skills, motor skills. and aesthetic appreciation.
  • Stimulate imagination and creativity.
  • Focus attention on how their bodies move.
  • Learn various songs and movements.
  • Learn the names of a variety of musical instruments and how to use them. 



Through the Health activities, the children will:

  • Develop an awareness of oneself, and build self esteem.
  • Identify qualities that make them special and individual.
  • develop good nutrition habits.
  • Self-help skills that will keep them healthy, they become confident of their own capabilities.
  • Model good health practices. 
  • Explore the five senses.
  • Develop ways to keep their teeth healthy and strong.

Guiding Children’s Behavior:

When working with infants and toddlers we place great importance in guiding their behavior as part of the curriculum. It is important to help young children develop inner controls and positive social skills. 


Below is a list of guiding children’s behavior in positive ways:

  • Encourage children’s growing sense of independence. Children are inviting to participate in daily routines. The children are given many chances to make their own choices.
  • Simple clear rules are provided for the classroom. Rules such as, “sit at the table with your juice cup” give children a sense of order and security as well as the opportunity to develop self-discipline. 
  • Understand that toddlers are not ready to share. When children don’t share they aren’t being greedy or mean. They need time to develop a sense of ownership and to learn to share. Model and encourage sharing.
  • State rules positively rather than negatively. This gives children an alternate way to behave. For example, “Please walk when you are inside” instead of “Don’t Run”.
  • Teachers share feelings about certain behaviors. For example, “ I know that you are angry and that’s O.K. but I don’t want you to hurt other people. The teachers help the children achieve what they want without hurting other people.
  • Give children alternate ways to express their anger. The teachers encourage the children to use their words to express themselves.
  • Acknowledge when children show self-discipline. The teachers always praise the children when they follow the rules of classroom.

When you take a positive approach to guiding children’s behavior, you help children learn self-control and promote their self-esteem.