Apple Montessori Blog

The Path from Infant to Toddler Care: When and How to Make the Transition


We know how important the early stages of development, and the transition between them, are to you and your child. At Apple Montessori Schools, we understand that it’s natural for parents to be uncertain or apprehensive about their child’s transition from one program to another, such as from infant care to toddler care.

After 45 years of experience in providing the Montessori method of child development and education, including our infant care and toddler programs, we have a strategy to help make that transition easier and more beneficial for you and your child.

1. First and foremost, focus on the child. We know that every child develops at their own pace and that’s the compass we use to guide the direction of the transition process. Ultimately, our goal is to provide a nurturing, warm and loving environment that encourages your child’s growth and development naturally at every stage, fostering his or her innate desire for independence and learning. We strive to nurture the “whole child” according to their internal timetable and needs.

2. Transition gradually, based on the comfort of your child. Our infant program is designed for children ages six weeks to 18 months. Under close observation and care, each child can eat, sleep, and engage with age-appropriate materials that spark his or her natural curiosity.

We are attuned to when your child is ready for more challenging materials or has reached important developmental milestones. At that time, we can introduce your child to the toddler program which is for children ages 18 months to approximately two and a half years old.

After thorough communications and agreement with you, we’ll gradually bring your child into the toddler classroom for short visits to help familiarize him or her with the primary and secondary caregivers, the new surroundings, activities and social setting. The transition process is flexible and usually takes several weeks depending on the comfort level of your child. Some children readily embrace a new environment, while others need a little more time to adjust to the change. It’s all perfectly normal. Learn more at

3. Understand your child’s point of view. One way of helping your child enjoy the path from infant to toddler care is by looking at the world through their eyes and understanding how they may be feeling about the change in routine. Acknowledge that your child might be apprehensive of a new environment. Be patient and provide soothing, kind words of encouragement to help your child feel safe and protected as they discover and explore new opportunities to grow.

4. Celebrate your child’s life milestones. There are many ways to applaud your child’s successes as they take the “next step” in their development. You can acknowledge their accomplishments regularly with celebration hugs, kisses, pictures, posters, and special meals to let them know just how proud you are of them. Kind words and encouragement are all your child needs to help boost their self-confidence.

We recognize that transitioning from infant to toddler care is not only an adjustment for your child, but also for you. That’s why Apple Montessori Schools encourages strong communications between parents and teachers. We support healthy parent-teacher relationships to best serve the needs of your child, so he or she can develop to their full potential. We provide live parent video monitoring, parent observations, parent-teacher conferences, and daily reporting to keep you aware of your child’s activities and well-being.