In Our Montessori Classrooms There Are 5 Main Academic Areas:
Casa Academic Program - 3 to 6 Years
Practical Life activities help the child develop independence by doing things for oneself. The child feels confident in helping others. Strong concentration and work skills are developed by completing a task from beginning to end. Examples are: caring for the classroom by dusting or sweeping, watering plants, pouring water or juice for snack, polishing silver, cutting and pasting, buckles and zippers and learning manners. (Grace and Courtesy)
Each of these exercises involves one of the senses such as sight, hearing, touching, tasting, smelling and stereognostic. (Sense of form) Examples are: identifying shades of colours, matching sound shakers, matching textures of fabric, tasting the difference between sweet and sour, smelling the difference between flowers and garlic and identifying geometric solids such as cones, spheres or cubes.
Language (Reading / Writing / Communication)
Language is essentially incorporated into every classroom activity. Every day in our classrooms the teachers read, sing and have conversations together with the children. Reading is a precious activity which is taught in steps beginning with learning the phonetic sounds of each letter (in lower case.) Writing is also taught in a series of steps beginning with forming the letters in sand, then on chalkboards, then holding the pencil properly to write on the paper.
When children begin to imagine, create, reason, calculate and measure, they are showing signs of a mathematical mind. In our classrooms, the first series of exercises involves numbers from 0 – 10. When the child is ready to move on, he/ she will begin teen work, followed by decimal system exercises which include all four operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.
This area includes lessons in Geography, History, Science, Zoology, Botany, Cooking and Gardening. Some examples are: continents of the world, the map of the provinces of Canada, the oceans around North America, the calendar with the days of the week and the months of the year, telling time, magnetism, mixing colours, parts of a fish or a horse
The School Added More Complements to the 5 Areas Above as Follows:
Every day we enjoy sitting together with the whole class. The teacher or an older child will lead discussions on our weekly theme topic which may be shapes, dinosaurs, Halloween, occupations, transportation, nutrition etc. We sing songs together in English or French, and we read stories together. Children have the opportunity to speak in front of the class if they wish to do so. We review classroom rules, procedures, daily happenings and have enjoyable debates.
The French speaking teacher takes the children in small groups. The children listen to French stories and sing French songs. Children learn vocabulary in sets such as: le corps (the body), les colours (the colours), les vetements (articles of clothing), les formes (shapes), la famile (members of the family), etc. The children will learn the calendar, days of the week, months of the year, and seasons. This leans towards conversations in French.
Listening to music and singing is part of our every day. The teachers invite the children to enjoy singing, dancing, finger plays, musical games and trying instruments. The children are introduced to the basic elements of music such as beat, rhythm, dynamics, tempo and pitch. A main goal is to develop the lifelong appreciation of music.
Crafts and Playtime
The children enjoy craft activities related to our weekly theme topics. We have a designated play time every morning and every afternoon. During play time the children enjoy our private outdoor fenced playground. If the weather does not permit outdoor play, we play indoors with toys such as blocks, puzzles, Legos or colouring.
After School Activities - Examples: Exercise and Music
We offer optional lessons after 3:30pm for an extra fee. All parents are informed of these after school activities at the start of the school year in September, and kept updated throughout the year.
We have approximately one special event per month. Our special event can be a special visitor such as a Police Officer or a Scientist. Our special event can be a trip to the farm (parents are welcome), or other educational location. We present a Holiday Concert in December and a Spring Concert in May/June. We invite all parents and family to attend.
Our school year runs from the beginning of September to near the end of June. We run a
summer program for July.
We also incorporate an indoor and outdoor playtime to our day.