Parent’s perspective: no other care could compare
Liesl Alli already notices the differences between her two daughters.
Anisa, now 10, was taken care of by a relative when she was a toddler, like many other children at that age. But when her youngest, Ariana, was 18 months, Alli didn’t have that option when she needed to go back to work. So she enrolled Ariana in the toddler program at .
“It was the best thing for her,” Alli says. “I just noticed everything—the social skills, the communication.”
Now four, Ariana—who got used to spending time with other children early—is outgoing and full of energy. Anisa has always been much shyer.
“I can just see the difference in both children,” Alli says.
Ariana has always been much more independent as well. She does things by herself, and doesn’t want mom’s help for anything. It was a surprise for Alli, who didn’t go through the same adjustment with Anisa, who was more used to having things done for her, having spent those early years at home
and with family.
“At 18 months, [Ariana was] carrying her lunchbox down the hallway, and it’s so funny because they’re just dragging them like luggage,” Alli says. “We would have fights over this, because she was wanting to be so independent. And I wasn’t ready for that.”
Helping toddlers learn means giving them freedom, but within limits. So says Gail Taras, head of Tall Pines’ toddler department. While your young ones might need to assert their independence by making their own decisions, it can sometimes be a laborious process for parents. The answer: Set out a few options from which they can make their choice.
“It’s a little less frustrating,” Taras says.
Gail is a teacher at