The Sun Room is a space for toddlers of 12 months to 2 years, and has a 5 to 1 child to teacher ratio.
Sun Room age children are at a unique stage of development. They are no longer babies but are not yet preschoolers. The four to one ratio and small group size, allow for an intimate, interpersonal atmosphere and high level of supervision. Sun Room teachers recognize that an appropriate program for toddlers ensures a balance between their conflicting needs for security and independence. Teachers respond to struggles to become independent by allowing Sun roomers to make simple choices, to do things for themselves and to participate actively during transitions and routines. Teachers respond to needs for security by comforting Sun roomers when distressed and providing support as they attempt new tasks. Sun roomers have the opportunity to learn with their whole bodies as they explore the environment.
Teachers provide multiples of favorite toys and materials in bins easily accessible to all Sun roomers, as learning to share is a developmental process. Teachers also incorporate the use of ‘baby sign language’ to help the children communicate. The Sun Room follows a flexible schedule that has a predictable sequence of events and is adjusted to meet individual needs and respond to emergent events. Routines such as meals, diapering, and napping make up much of the day and therefore are considered times for conversation, individual attention and socializing.
Because the attention span of Sun roomers is short and rapidly shifting, the program is highly flexible and individualized.