Introduction Toddlers, perhaps even more than older children, need to move—to channel
their energies in creative, beneficial ways and get started on the right foot, as it
were, toward proper development. So, not surprisingly, teachers and caregivers
who knew of my materials for preschoolers began asking for movement activi-
ties and music they could use successfully with toddlers.
Of course, “watering down” my preschool program wasn’t an option. In fact,
because there are so many differences between toddlers (for this book, consid-
ered to be children ages eighteen to thirty-six months old) and children just
two years older, there was little of Preschoolers & Kindergartners that would be
usable. Songs had to be shortened and, in many cases, slowed down. And natu-
rally, new songs and activities had to be written.
The result is the movement program in your hands—Toddlers—which is
now being used in schools, child care settings, recreation centers, and gyms
throughout the United States and in several other countries.
The curriculum consists of fourteen lesson plans with four activities per
plan (not including extensions). Each lesson is intended to take approximately
thirty minutes to complete. (Alternatives are discussed later, under “Implement-
ing the Program.”) The fourteen lessons and their activities have been arranged
in a developmental progression, from least to most challenging, with each lesson
plan consisting of one body-parts activity, one nonlocomotor activity, one loco-
motor skill experience, and one activity exploring an element of movement.
The lessons begin with simple body-part identification, which is the basis of
any movement program. The lessons also start with the simplest locomotor skills
(movements that transport the body from one place to another) of walking and
running. (Technically, crawling and creeping are the simplest, but the exploration
of these skills has been placed later in order to promote a sense of “maturity”
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