“The goal of early childhood education should be to activate the child’s own natural desire to learn.” – Dr. Maria Montessori
The Primary Level – Learn by doing (3-6 years old)
The primary classroom is designed specifically for the child, and the entire environment is created to facilitate the primary child’s learning process. Maria Montessori observed that children learn by doing and wrote that the “hand was the instrument of the mind”.
The Montessori curricula, techniques and materials satisfy the natural tendency for this age of child to learn by doing. Independence, coordination, order, self-discipline and concentration are developed. Children work individually and cooperatively with materials that engage their curiosity.
The children are given lessons using the Montessori materials and then are free to explore and observe. An emphasis is placed on the process of learning rather than the product. The aim is to develop a love of work and a joy of learning.
The Montessori primary program includes activities for practical life, refinement of the senses, language and mathematics. Geography, history, physical science, and life science are presented to the child through various language and manipulative activities. Movement, music and art form part the day-to-day activities.
The Elementary Levels – Time to breathe and room to grow (6-12 years old)
Our elementary classrooms provide the child with an open and rich environment, where there are no limits to what the child may learn and explore. Dr. Montessori referred to the elementary stage of learning as the Intellectual Period. The child, entering a period of uniform growth focuses on mental explorations. The Montessori elementary programs focus on giving the children lessons and questions to guide their explorations of culture, science, mathematics, language and social rules and morals.
The Montessori curriculum is taught from large scope to small, moving from big-picture understanding to a focus on details. The children continue to work with concrete materials to explore academic areas, quickly discovering abstract methods to utilize.
Lower Elementary (6-9 years old)
The work in the lower elementary is done with extensive Montessori material allowing children not only to experience the depth and breadth of the curriculum, but also to become comfortable with their own learning styles.
Upper Elementary (9-12 years old)
The upper elementary students transition to more abstract thinking relying more heavily on books and other resource material, as they strengthen the work begun in the lower elementary.