Montessori curriculum is based on the research and findings of Dr. Maria Montessori. Its method is structured around, and promotes, the child’s natural, self-initiated impulse to become absorbed in an environment and to learn from it. Based on her observations, Dr. Montessori developed specific materials, techniques and curriculum areas that assist each child in reaching his or her full potential.
The practical life area offers activities which enhance the development of task organization and cognitive order through care of self, care of environment, and coordination of physical movement. Such activities include pouring their drinks, sweeping floors, dressing and undressing themselves, as well as grace and courtesy.
This area of learning is scientifically designed to develop, classify and grade the stimulation that children receive through their senses. This curriculum area contains Montessori-specific materials that help the child refine his or her experience of sight, sound, touch , taste, and smell.
These activities are organized in a sequential manner to follow the natural language development of the child. The child is first introduced to letter and sounds. After several sounds are mastered, parents soon notice their child is forming letters and words and beginning to sound out short words. Vocabulary development is emphasized in all areas by using specific words for objects in the classroom. Once the child has gained confidence with her language skills, she can use it to enhance her studies in other areas of the classroom.
The mathematics area makes use of manipulative materials to enable the child to internalize comcepts of number, symbols, sequence, and operations. Once the child has a firm foundation in the operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division, memorization of facts is introduced. Montessori children are not only able to count, but skip count, square numbers and work with numbers in the thousands.
Through our hands-on materials the children learn to match and sort objects and pictures of living/non-living and plant/animal. The focus here is that the child learns how to be a scientist: objective, organized, able to perform tasks in a predetermined order, and record the results.
The cultural area provides activities which expose the child to basics in geography, history, music, art, etc. The children study different parts of the world, and experience concrete examples of that area’s language, literature, food, dress, music and artwork. This area introduces the child to our planet’s great diversity of people.