The World is Our Canvas – Celebrating Creative Freedom in Early Years

From a hand-crafted enchanted forest to a room inspired by the likes of Monet, Raza, Mondrian and more; from painting with natural materials like twigs, stones and leaves to building 3D sculptures, crafting mosaics, and weaving; from open-ended messy art to elaborate canvas painting, Tod Canvas – the annual art festival of Toddler’s Den was…

The Right to Imagine: How We Create Inspiring Spaces

“A little too intelligent for his age, six-year-old with spiky blonde hair and not much of a filter between his brain and his mouth, always found with a stuffed tiger as his co-conspirator.” No prizes for guessing the characters I am describing here, undoubtedly the epitome of childhood, the incomparable Calvin & Hobbes, protagonists of…

When K-1 Turned Into Event Planners

“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose” – Dr. Seuss Event planning as an assignment can be both exciting and challenging. It holds innumerable opportunities to learn how to work with others, get organised, communicate effectively and  take ownership and initiative. This…

How Toddlers Learn – Anecdotes from a Parent-Toddler Classroom

Learning happens best when the senses are engaged. This stands true for everyone, but especially for toddlers who are still discovering and experiencing the world around them for the first time. Babies are born with basic sensory systems that grow amazingly complex within the first few months as new stimulus is processed and millions of…

Understanding 21st Century Teaching

Linda Darling Hammond in her book, Preparing Teachers for a Changing World writes: To a music lover watching a concert from the audience, it would be easy to believe that a conductor has one of the easiest jobs in the world. There he stands, waving his arms in time with the music, and the orchestra…

Experiments in the “Animal Makerspace”

There’s no denying that play is of vital importance in a child’s life. It becomes all the more valuable when it is structured to provide children with meaningful opportunities that pique their curiosity, spark connections and encourage them to explore their imagination and creativity.  Keeping this in mind, I recently experimented with an animal themed…

A Day in the Life of G-Y-M

Hello, my name is The Cove, also known as the Indoor Gym at Toddler’s Den, but you can call me Gym; spelt: G-Y-M, in case you confuse it with “Jim.” I don’t think I need to introduce myself to you. I’m every child’s go-to place! And the parent body is all too familiar with me…

Why the Arts Play an Important Role in Early Childhood

While the arts are conventionally seen as a fun way for children to explore and express their innate creativity, they also have far-reaching developmental benefits. The first 1000 days of life lay down the architecture of the brain, and exposing children to the arts during this time sparks a curiosity about the world as children…

Why Mud Play is More Than Just Fun

On June 29th, we celebrated International Mud Day, an initiative of the World Forum Foundation  that encourages reconnecting with nature and the great outdoors. We seized the opportunity to design several different kinds of mud play activities for our children, and the outcome was even more delightful than we had expected! Our youngest learners of…

Your Guide to a Happy & Healthy Monsoon

The rainy season is a welcome respite from the harsh summer but brings along with it an onslaught of illness and a generally unhygienic environment. Germs and bacteria thrive in the warm, damp conditions of this season, which makes it all the more necessary to take certain precautions, particularly for young children who are more…