The Toddler Experience
A play-based experience
Ages: 18 months – 3 years old
Uses: This play-based toddler curriculum is designed with the busy mama in mind to cut back on the time you plan and prep while giving you more quality time to play, explore, and learn with your toddler. Every activity can be used at home with 1 or more children or adapted for used in a daycare setting.
Learning: In this Montessori-inspired toddler curriculum, your child will be…
- exploring a variety of art mediums to foster creativity
- strengthening motor skills to prepare for future learning such as writing
- being exposed to academic concepts to start building a sturdy foundation for which to grow all their future knowledge
- And learning how to be independent and confident in their learning journey
How Your Toddler Will Learn
The Toddler Experience is an introduction to learning. Toddler years are all about exposure when it comes to the academics. The curriculum starts with an introduction to each color. Then your child will be introduced to each letter of the alphabet through play-based experiences and themes. Exposure to math skills are sprinkled through each theme with hands-on activities.
Through play-based activities, sensory bins, and practical life activities that use materials around the house like clothes pin and tongs, your toddler will practice both fine motor and gross motor skills. There is a strong focus on fine motor skills since they are essential for future writing abilities.
The curriculum starts with The Young Toddler section where your toddler will explore different art mediums such as clay, paint, oil pastels, and charcoal. Through these experiences they are learning to process sensory information, how to use these art mediums to learn, fine motor skills, and strengthening their creativity.
Scope & Sequence
Although it’s more of just a scope than a sequence. Learning is not linear and your little will jump around from skill to skill. Your child will learn deeper and faster when you follow their lead.
- Expresses likes/dislikes
- Asserts desire to start/stop an activity (shows initiative)
- Asks for help when needed
- Experiments/ role plays with a variety of emotions
- Follows rules/routines with few prompts
- Focuses on activities for a short period of time with the time increasing monthly
- Anticipates what comes next in their daily routine
- Plays side by side with others
- Helps/participates when asked
- Shows empathy towards other upset children
- Does things for themselves
- Begins to understand their feelings
- Asserts independence
- Participates in healthy habits
- Balance on wide surface
- Throws in intended direction
- Catches against body
- Push/pull objects
- Carries, drags, kicks, and tosses objects
- Stand on one foot
- Manipulates body with purpose
- Walks sideways/ backwards
- Jumps with both feet
- Walks along a line
- Easily puts shapes in a shape sorter
- Manipulates chunky puzzle pieces to fit
- String beads
- Stack blocks 4-6 high
- Draw a circle
- Draw a straight line
- Turn pages of a book
- Opens, closes, and twists objects
- Holds drawing tools with whole hand
- Moves body purposefully
- Repeats words in familiar songs
- Uses hands/feet to explore
- Scribbles, colors, and paints intentionally
- Uses playdough/clay intentionally
- Claps to a beat
- Explores sound
- Explores a variety of artistic tools
- Uses materials to create shapes
- Uses words, loose parts, actions, and props to pretend
- Distinguishes from real and pretend
- Knows basic colors (red, green, blue, yellow, orange, black, white)
- Recognizes numbers 1-5
- Points to objects when counting up to 5(one to one correspondence)
- Creates groups of objects
- Adds/removes objects from group when prompted
- Identifies basic shapes (triangle, circle, square, rectangle)
- Knows next to, between, in front of, and behind
- Sorts by one feature
- Knows bigger, longer, and heavier
- Compares and orders 2-3 objects by size, length, hue, and weight)
- Demonstrates understanding of one, two, and more
- Matches two objects
- Knows on/off, over/under, and up/down
- Explores cause/effect
- Solves problems they encounter while playing
- Knows same/different
- Locate hidden objects
- Take things apart and attempt to put them back together
- Imitates past events during pretend play
- Puts together a 4-6 piece puzzle
- Knows more/less
- Identifies physical similarities/differences between self and others
- Follows a path
- Describes events as they happen
- Identifies body parts
- Asks 1-2 work questions
- Reacts to change in texture, smell, sound, and sight
- Uses simple tools purposefully
- Identifies interests and seeks information about them
- Explores motion
- Notices changes in temperature (hot/cold)
- Explores movable parts
- Retell simple directions
- Identify letters in name
- Responds to simple statements/questions
- Follows related 2-step directions
- Uses 2-4 word sentences
- Suggests missing rhyming words at the end of song/rhyme
- Identifies top/bottom/front/back of book
- Indicates where to start reading
- Recognizes differences between pictures, letters, and numbers in print
- Talks about pictures/familiar stories
- Answers “what” questions about books
- Recalls name of main character
- Scribbles/draws to represent objects and words
- Answers “where is” questions about books
- Points to works and pretends to read
- Recognizes if words/pictures are right side up
- Participates in 2-way conversations
- Uses words to reflect meaning
- Asks “what’s this/that?”
- Uses language purposefully
- Calls self by name
- Sings simple songs
- Explores different writing materials
- Knows name, age, and gender
- Recognizes name in print
“The Toddler Experience Curriculum took out the hard work of planning.”
I was having a hard time coming up with activities that were age-appropriate for my toddler. I thought I should be able to work out a plan by myself, but didn’t know where to start. The Toddler Experience Curriculum took out the hard work of planning activities by myself. It gave me more time to play with my child instead of spending a lot of time searching on Pinterest. The curriculum encouraged me to do activities with my son, like fine motor activities, that I didn’t even think he would be able to do.
Anjuli | from England
After going through The Toddler Experience, you’ll likely be able to…
After going through The Toddler Experience, YOUR CHILD will likely be able to…
At the end of the day, you've enjoyed being with each other and building a stronger relationship through playing, exploring, and learning.
“It’s incredibly well developed“
I appreciate Amanda and The Toddler Experience because it is the only curriculum I could find meant for toddlers to be used by a parent at home rather than in a childcare setting. It’s incredibly well developed and has so much to choose from that one can easily find something that will appeal to their individual toddler’s interests and abilities. I love that a million ideas that I could have spent hours rounding up online and then spent additional hours figuring out the best way to implement them, are already here and organized for me, which is just what this busy mama needed.
Jessica | from Texas
“I love watching him learn and get better at activities.“
I love the flexibility of it. I go through each week and pick the activities we’re going to do when and can adjust things based on my son’s abilities or interests. The tot school has been wonderful to expand my son’s skills, and I love watching him learn and get better at the activities!
Kelly | from Indiana
What's Inside The Toddler Experience Curriculum
Teaching Toddlers at Home
A comprehensive getting started guide and video course that walks you through my step by step process to getting started. You’ll learn how to create a relaxed routine, an environment that naturally encourages learning, and how to trust the process.
I’ll walk you through the curriculum and planning process, so you can start with confidence.
A full play-based, completely child-led curriculum for toddlers
18 months to 3 years old.
This toddler curriculum is designed to expose your child to academic skills through their unique interests. Spend your days exploring your child’s curiosities while learning about how their world works.
The Toddler Experience Curriculum consists of 3 sections:
Section 1: The Young Toddler (See Sample From This Section)
You will start in The Young Toddler section. This part of the curriculum is designed to expose your toddler to the Tot School concept. During these first few months, you’ll follow a more loose structure so you can get a good understanding of how your toddler learns.
The Toddler Experience does more than just give you activity ideas. It teaches you HOW to teach your unique toddler. During The Young Toddler section, you’re encouraged to observe as much as possible to help set a routine and define interests.
- This section was created for toddlers between 18 and 22 months old, but it is an excellent starting point for toddlers of any age.
- Each month there is a new theme based around a color and shape, with sensory and motor activities, as well as an introduction to a variety of art mediums.
- More laid-back, The Young Toddler eases your child into Tot School. This means you can take your time learning about their interests, how they learn, and develop your own routine around their natural flow.
Section 2: The Letter Themes (See Sample From This Section)
Once you complete The Young Toddler, you’ll move onto The Letter Themes and The Extra Themes. You will use these two sections interchangeably depending on your toddler’s unique interests.
Every letter of the alphabet is connected to a theme. This section is not intended to be done alphabetically. You will choose which theme/letter to do based on your toddlers interests or things happening in your lives.
- Each letter of the alphabet has it’s own 2-week theme, though the primary focus is on the play-centered learning activities, with some exposure to the letter.
- Each letter theme includes at least 4 tot trays, 6 theme activities, 2 sensory bins, a book list, songs/fingerplays, 2 letter activities, 2 shape activities, 2 color activities, a literacy connection, and 2 STEAM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Art, and Math) connections.
Section 3: The Extra Themes (See Sample From This Section)
The Extra Themes include holidays and other themes your toddlers may be interested in. I add new themes to this section frequently, and I will develop new themes tailored to your toddler’s interests – just send in your request via email! (And at no additional cost to you!)
- Themes in this section include holidays, seasons, and your toddler’s interests.
- Each theme in this section includes at least 6 theme activities, 2 tot trays, a book list, songs/fingerplays, a sensory bin, a literacy connection and 2 STEAM connections.
- Online access means you can access new themes immediately.
What Comes With Each Theme
Weekly planning template
Materials list to make gathering materials quick
Theme extension ideas in case your toddler wants to keep learning about related topics
Lyrics to songs and fingerplays to build phonemic awareness
Recommended read alouds/books to extend the learning
Suggested ideas for theme-based sensory bins to work on sensory processing and fine motor skills
4 tot trays for building specific skills within the theme (e.g. fine motor, cognitive, math, …)
Literacy connections which use a theme-based story with retelling sensory play, Youtube video, extensions into art, cooking activities, and more.
Letters, shapes and colors introduced with a play-based approach that supports skills like math, sensory, literacy, and fine motor learning.
Special theme activities that includes gross motor play, fine motor play, and learning about their world.
A wide variety of activities to choose from to support your unique toddler’s interests and learning needs.
Links to online videos I’ve selected on Youtube to accompany each theme.
Theme-specific printables (which are vary few) to support and enhance the hands-on activities used in your lessons.
- All materials can be found around the house and are easy to prep.
- A password protect site that houses all the themes, so you can pick & choose the best ones for your toddler and the themes can be updated frequently.
(Hint: it's less than $.25 a day)
What You Will Receive
You’ll receive lifetime access to The Toddler Experience Curriculum designed to help you create simple child-led, play-based experiences that help your toddler explore their world without spending hours planning & prepping.
The Toddler Experience will help you gain back that quality time you crave to play, explore, and learn WITH your kiddo while your child becomes confident, independent, and builds a strong love of learning.
The Toddler Experience is a hands-on program with most materials being found around the house.
You will receive the lesson plans for the themes in digital format within a members area. You are able to download & print each PDF, but it’s not necessary. The curriculum provides any printed materials, which is very limited, so no worries about printing a lot.
Teaching Toddlers at Home course and all other how to videos that are included in the curriculum are also housed in the members area.
“His love of creative projects has been fostered. I am able to pick up on what he enjoys or doesn’t more easily.“
I was hesitant before purchasing The Toddler Experience. I just didn’t know where to start and wasn’t sure if I could commit to doing a curriculum. I loved Amanda’s e-mails and found her to be knowledgeable and approachable, so I took the plunge. It’s nice to have specific activities I can pull out each day before we play. I love watching my son go about his day and then go back and forth to the activities. His love of creative projects has been fostered. I am able to pick up on what he enjoys or doesn’t more readily. The Toddler Experience can work for any child in many different situations.
Halie | from Utah
“Amanda’s program incorporates learning through experiences and doing, rather than a traditional sedentary approach to learning.“
Before purchasing The Toddler Experience, I had trouble knowing what was age appropriate for my son. I struggled with knowing what kinds of things to do and how to do them. When I came across Amanda’s curriculum, I wasn’t sure I’d like it. I’ve seen a lot of curriculums out there, and most of them seemed too concept based instead of experience based. I chose The Toddler Experience specifically because my son is a very physical boy, so he doesn’t sit well. Amanda’s program incorporates learning through experience and doing rather than a traditional sedentary approach to learning.
Lacie | from Colorado
“It’s just so much easier.“
I love how flexible the curriculum is. I can follow it as rigidly or as loosely as I feel. Now my son recognizes a routine and keeps me on track! It’s just so much easier to have the ideas and just quickly gather the materials. I also love how new themes are added every month. It’s like a membership without the constant cost.
Tatjana | from Utah
Get All of This When You Enroll
Frequently Asked Questions
Do I need to follow the toddler curriculum exactly?
No. I provide resources in the curriculum to help you identify your toddler’s interests and choose a theme that best suits his or her interests. It’s a very flexible curriculum. If interested, there are enough activities to keep going into a third week. But if it turns out your toddler isn’t really interested in that topic, you’re encouraged to move on to a new theme.
Are there assessments?
No. The goal of the curriculum is to expose toddlers to academic concepts and build a lifelong love of learning. Toddlers are not expected to remember the academic skills at this point. There is a quick checklist of skills for each activity and an overall skills list included in the getting started guide.
Will I really have time to implement the curriculum?
I get it …You’re a super busy toddler mom with 986 things to do. I’ve laid out all the steps in crystal clear fashion so you don’t have to worry about anything. It only takes 30 minutes to plan and prep. Then only 5-10 minutes every night to get set up. I even get laundry and cleaning done during the day since most of the activities are child-led
That all depends on you and your little. Many of the activities will repeat all week. Multiple exposures to activities helps deepen learning. You get to pick & choose how many and which activities will most engage your little.
What age is this toddler curriculum for? Will my 3 or 4 year old be able to use it too?
The curriculum was designed and is developmentally appropriate for ages 18 months to 3 years old. But yes, a 3 and 4 year old can benefit from the curriculum as well.
The curriculum is extremely adaptable. You just need to up the challenge a bit. For example, if you are doing one of the counting activities, your toddler might only be counting to 5 whereas your 4 year old could be going to 50.
Are all the materials included?
Any learning cards, counting mats, clipart, and printables (which are very few) you need are provided. However, the other materials you will need are typically found around the house.
What themes are included?
There are over 50 themes included, and more are added every month. Click here to see a list of all the themes currently in the curriculum.
Do you offer refunds?
Due to the nature of the curriculum being online files, we do not give refunds.