Young Toddlers

Young Toddlers Unit


Many incoming parents ask us what we “teach” at age one, aside from getting a decent nap and mealtime schedule. Our answer is that no part of our day goes by without a purpose. A toddler can learn self-care and independent skills by finding their own diaper during changing time, scrubbing soap onto their hands while they wash, or using a paper towel to help clean the table before and after meals. We discuss colors, shapes, textures and feelings during art, then go on to build roadways and zoos in the block center. Mealtime is not just for trying new vegetables; it is our social hour! Sometimes we ask questions of the children about their morning or what we saw on our walk, and sometimes we just sit back and watch the conversations and songs start up on their own. The year of development between age 1 and 2 can mark so many milestones: walking, talking, social skills, and independence abound! Each child is their own individual person and will reach different milestones at different rates and through different paths. We have all chosen to be a part of the Young Toddler Unit because we love to foster these skills and cannot wait to help your child grow into that unique individual that they are becoming. We believe that open and honest communication is an integral part of our daily interactions with parents. We work together as a unit and hope that you feel comfortable with all of the Younger Toddler teachers, even if your child’s primary teacher is not available during drop off or pick up. Our classrooms spend a lot of time together at the beginning and end of day, as well as nearly all day long when the weather is permitting!


Honeybees Room

Ladybugs Room

Pumpkin Patch Room 

Brianna W., Infant and Young Toddler Unit Leader

Welcome families! My name is Brianna.  I started working at The Learning Gardens in February 2022. I have been working in the childcare field, working with children ranging from six weeks old to five years old, since 2017. Through the years, I have found my heart is with the youngest groups. I started working on my Associate Degree in Early Childhood Education in 2017 but I took a break from school to focus more on working full time. I am a level 7 on the Wisconsin Registry. I was raised in Waterloo, WI and currently live in McFarland, WI. When I am not working, I enjoy camping, spending time with family and friends, going to concerts, and spending a lot of time outdoors.

Nicki, Young Toddler Float Teacher

Hello, my name is Nicki and I have been at The Learning Gardens since November 2023.  I love working with children because they are fun, full of energy, curious, adventurous, and keep you on your toes with excitement. I believe children learn in many ways using all their senses and by example from their peers and teachers.  Creativity is my favorite way to teach with lots of hands-on experiences.  I am passionate about art, babies, being creative, having fun, and making sure each child has a good day and learns something new.

I have been involved in Early Childhood Education since 1998 intermittently.  I also have helped raise all of my nephews and nieces and now my great-nephews and nieces.  I love working with kids of all ages. I am a Level 3 on the Wisconsin Registry

I have lived in Madison all my life except for a 6 month stint in Arlington TX.  I am joyfully married and I have 2 adorable grown sons.  In my spare time, I like to garden, work on craft projects, style hair, and spend time with my family. I love anything artistic, creative, and mind-expanding.  I love writing, learning, and teaching.

My favorite quote is “Creativity is intelligence having fun.”  by Albert Einstein.