The Montessori Process
Childhood is marked by a series of stages in development. Each stage is critically important to the growth of a child. Maria Montessori was the first one to formally recognize these stages and identified them as "sensitive periods." These are the periods in time when your child will best learn new skills, such as talking, walking, and different types of cognitive learning. A child will learn more during the first six years of life than at any other time in his or her lifetime.
This is why Dr. Montessori created the "prepared environment" - the Montessori classroom. It is equipped with all the materials your child will need to prepare for life during these important beginning years. The Montessori School classroom environment promotes the progression of learning: introduction, practice and mastery. It will typically take a child three - sometimes four - years to complete the learning stages of this growth process.
The Pre-School Year(s)
Pre-School is your child's first introduction to a cognitive learning environment. Many times it will be your child's first experience away from family members. Your child will need to learn how to act in school, how to interact with a larger group of friends, and how to begin to make personal choices.
At The Montessori School, your Pre-School child will practice:
* social skills
* how to be independent
* fine motor skills
* large motor control
* school behavior
* organization skills
* a sense of sequence
* how to make work choices
* learning skills
This is accomplished mostly through your child's use of the materials in our Practical Life, Sensorial, and Cultural (which includes Geography, Science and Social Studies) Areas.
The Pre-Kindergarten Year
Pre-Kindergartners have the basic skills that will allow for more conscious learning. They still need to refine the skills they learned in Pre-School, but they have enough skills and maturity to be more focused on the conscious pursuit of academic learning.
At The Montessori School, your Pre-Kindergartner will practice:
* advanced perceptual skills
* phonetic reading skills
* refined motor skills
* basic number skills
* appropriate school behaviors
* pencil skills
* how to cooperate in a group
Your child will continue refining the skills taught in our Practical Life, Sensorial, and Cultural (Geography, Science and Social Studies) Areas, but will now be spending significantly more time working in our Language and Math Areas.
The Kindergarten Year
It is during the Kindergarten Year in the Montessori classroom that everything comes together for the child. Self-confidence and leadership skills are enhanced as the kindergartners are the "leaders" of the class. The Kindergartners' academic skills are reinforced to maximize their success in First Grade and beyond.
At The Montessori School, your Kindergarten child will learn:
* to read using a systematic phonics-based program
(utilizing sightwords, storybooks, and comprehension activities)
* to work with advanced math concepts
(counting to 1000, decimal system, clock times, operations, money)
* geography and the solar system
(map language and posters for solar system, continents, and countries)
(practice with either D'Nealian or traditional print for First Grade)
(learning to write their own stories and collaborate on a book)
* geometry language
(plane and solid geometry shapes and language)
* science, art, music, and other cultural activities.