- morning & afternoon classes
- affordable and competitive fees
- flexible schedules to meet needs of parents
- accepts 4C funding
WHAT IS MONTESSORI?
Montessori classrooms provide a prepared environment where children are free to respond to their natural drive to work and learn. The children's inherent love of learning is encouraged by giving them opportunities to engage in spontaneous, meaningful activities under the guidance of a trained teacher. Through their work, the children develop concentration, motivation, persistence, and discipline. Within this framework of order, the children progress at their own pace and rhythm, according to their individual capabilities, during the crucial years of development.
Montessori education emphasizes internal (self) motivation. The classroom is a precisely prepared environment for individual instruction and self-paced learning. Well-tested teaching techniques and materials are designed to maximize children's time in the classroom. Teachers show students how to create order and discover principles by means of carefully demonstrated lessons that can then be practiced at will.
Credentialed Montessori teachers encourage effort and monitor progress, but do not pressure their students to perform according to any preset standards. Introductions of new lessons are tailored to the individual needs and interests of each child. Independence, initiative, responsibility for making choices, and persistence in seeing tasks through to completion are qualities fostered by this approach.
The Montessori method of education has been successful for students with diverse abilities and age ranges. The Montessori method emphasizes respect for each child as a unique individual. Teachers are viewed as facilitators and protectors of the child's right to develop his or her potential in a nurturing physical and social environment.
A Child's Development
Although our understanding of innate developmental programs in children is still very primitive, Dr. Montessori's observations did lead her to the following conclusions:
- Children learn best by doing rather than just by watching and listening. Moreover, they enjoy repetition. Montessori exercises require physical activity and involve practicing skills.
- Interaction with one's environment requires accurate observation and controlled responses. Montessori exercises are designed to sharpen sense perception and to refine muscular control.
- For children, the world at large is bewildering - full of complex processes and chaotic events.
- Montessori schools attempt to create a simple, ordered environment in which children can focus on just a few concepts and/or operations at a time. Classroom materials are designed to eliminate distractions by emphasizing only one facet or aspect of reality. For example, to learn about "length" students are given sets of wooden rods of uniform width and color that differ only in length. Lessons are designed to build upon themselves from simple to complex, from concrete to abstract.
- To master more difficult exercises later on, children must first learn disciplined patterns of activity.
- Therefore, Montessori lessons, although simple, are highly structured and precise. Each lesson consists of a series of operations that must be done in a specific sequence. (Movements are always from left to right and top to bottom, thus preparing pupils for reading, writing, and arithmetic.)
- To exercise freedom, children must have opportunities to choose. Montessori students are given lessons involving several different sets of materials, all of which are within reach. Pupils are then left to decide how to allocate their time among the various exercises.
- Independence is also facilitated by error control. Montessori exercises are designed to be self-correcting. When children can easily remedy their own mistakes, the emotional frustration in learning and the need for adult intrusion into the learning processes are minimized.
- To develop persistence in students, each Montessori exercise must be carried out to completion before another is begun. The final step in each lesson is always to return classroom materials to their proper locations.
Children have a passion for learning, but their interests and abilities change as they mature. Dr. Montessori was able to map different "sensitive periods" in the mental development of children, during which they seem especially attracted and receptive to various subjects and skills - e.g., verbal language (ages 1½ - 3 years), writing (3½ - 4½ years) and reading (4½ - 5½ years).
Sensitive periods vary from one child to another and are not easily influenced by external stimuli. Attempts to accelerate learning timetables by means of rewards, punishments, or artificial exaggeration of competitive peer pressures are ineffective and may be counterproductive. Montessori schools emphasize individual, self-paced learning in a cooperative environment. Children of different ages are mixed together so that older students serve as role models or even directly assist younger pupils.
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