The Nursery at Our Lady of Sorrows
162 Academy Street, South Orange, NJ 07079

The Waddler Room

   In our Waddler classroom (approximately 12-24 months of age) children begin a transition from infant to toddler, using cots rather than cribs at rest time, and small tables and chairs instead of highchairs at mealtimes. During this stage the children begin feeding themselves, say their first words and go from two naps to one. Children begin acquiring skills needed for social interaction. Expressive language often emerges, and the children continue to develop fine and gross motor skills through repeated use of developmentally appropriate toys and props. 

   Our curriculum for the Waddler room is based on the Emergent Curriculum model. We allow the children to take the lead in what they are interested in and we build on that interest. If we notice that
they have been spending a lot of time looking at the trees blowing in the wind, we will spend time learning about how trees grow. We will read books, plant seeds, take a nature walk and point out the different size trees, talk about the many kinds of leaves. We will then bring that knowledge back to the classroom and apply it to our art experiences. The possibilities are endless, and because it’s something they are interested in, they are more likely to participate and retain the information. 

   In the Waddler room, snack and lunch are served as a group activity. Each day there will be a morning and afternoon snack, provided by The Nursery, the children should bring their own lunch. Snack and lunch times are special opportunities for the Waddlers to learn social skills and manners. The children learn to set the tables, sit nicely and “clean up” when they are done eating. 

   Naptime is in the early afternoon shortly after lunch. Each child is provided a Waddler-sized cot. Families are encouraged to send in a blanket and small pillow if desired. The caregivers turn off the lights and play quiet music to help the children rest. The caregivers are happy to rub backs to help the Waddlers to fall asleep. No child is forced to sleep. After resting on their cot for thirty minutes, a child who does not sleep is allowed to choose a quiet activity until naptime is over. 

   It's a very exciting time for everyone to watch all the changes take place. We believe that a Waddler at Play has a GREAT day!