A Montessori approach with a difference
The Montessori Curriculum is divided into five basic areas: Practical Life, Sensorial, Number Work, Language and Culture. Our classrooms are specially designed to support our curriculum and include Montessori materials set in a prepared environment.
When children first enter the Montessori classroom they will spend considerable time working in the Practical Life area. This area aims to develop concentration, coordination, control, independence and order. We do this by providing materials that are task oriented and requires a child’s full concentration. Activities such as pouring, cleaning, buttoning, arranging also develop hand and eye coordination. As the child becomes more coordinated, he or she is also able to better control their motor skills. By completing these tasks on their own, they develop a sense of independence. Every activity is set up in a particular sequence that the young child will crave order in their environment.
There is always only one of each material, this is so children learn naturally to be patient and wait their turn. This helps them develop grace and courtesy with one another.
The child, to Montessori, is a “sensorial explorer”. By providing a Sensorial area, children learn through the senses of touch, taste, smell, hearing and sight and understand the relationships of colour, sound, shape, form and texture. This results in the development of the child’s visual, auditory, olfactory, gustatory and tactile senses.
Children are naturally attracted to the science of number. Mathematics, like language, is the product of the human intellect. Mathematics arises from the human mind as it comes into contact with the world and as it contemplates the universe and the factors of time and space.
Attentive listening is an important preparation for reading. In a Montessori environment, children work with a variety of sensorial materials that help them in the preparation of language such as distinguishing different sounds using the sound boxes, feeling of the rough and smooth board during tactile activities which prepares them to feel the sandpaper letters when they are learning to listen to the different phonetic sounds as well as when they are learning to write. Story time and line time aids the children to further develop a richer vocabulary.
A Montessori classroom is also always rich in prints to encourage the children to become little emergent readers. They are also encouraged to ask questions which help them to further develop their vocabulary and language skills.
Treetop House has a specific area designated for culture. Culture which consists of biology, geography, history, science and music provides an unlimited source of experiences for children. Science activities are nature-based, and include the study of animals, plant types, and environments around the world. Children are given an introduction to geography through the use of the continent globe, wooden puzzle maps, flags, artifacts, costumes from other countries, and multi-cultural celebrations throughout the year. Songs, stories and games are incorporated into daily routines. In this area of the school, the children learn to understand and appreciate the world around them. Respect for all life is also emphasized.