Multi-age classrooms encourage cooperative learning and allow for broad emotional and social development. Each environment is dynamic, creating a nurturing atmosphere where younger children learn from older children. Older children master their knowledge by helping those younger than themselves.
Ages 2-14 Months
Dr. Montessori believed that education is an aid to life that should begin during the period of pregnancy. Because you are your child’s first teacher, a class for parents and infants is offered one day each week. Dr. Montessori’s research stressed the vital benefits of early parental and postnatal education and its affects on infants. Practical ways to create a nurturing home environment while being assisted with attachment and separation is discussed. During the class, both parent and infant are introduced to developmentally appropriate materials. Topics discussed promote physical and psychological stages of development: toileting, development of language and movement, breast feeding, weaning, independence, importance of observation, and setting limits through natural logical consequences.
Ages 3 Months -
The first years of life are crucial for laying the foundation for the future. The Infant Program encourages the natural progression of each developmental milestone during the first year of life such as stomach time, rolling over, sitting up, slithering, crawling, pulling up, and walking. The materials (toys) in the environment all have an intellectual purpose and encourage fine and gross motor development. The environment is prepared to help infants develop coordination of movement, body schema, language, independence, and toileting skills.
Ages Walking Well -
The Toddler Program, or N.E.S.T. – Nurturing Environment Specialized for Toddlers, provides a child-sized environment that allows the children to have the opportunity to work with materials specially designed to help them develop sensory discrimination, coordination of movement, language enrichment, independence, toileting skills, and social relations. The trained directress presents lessons individually or in small groups to aid language development, fine/gross motor skills and “practical life” activities. The environment is prepared in such a way to allow the child to develop self-esteem and confidence gaining independence.
The Children's House
Ages 3-6 Years
Maria Montessori believed the years from three to six are the most critical period for nurturing a child’s natural curiosity and for laying the foundation for all future development. Classrooms are designed to encourage children in their self-directed discovery of the world. Using proven Montessori methods, children learn writing, reading, math, geography, botany, art, music, drama, and “practical life” activities. Children are encouraged to develop a love of learning, trust their own ability to learn, and learn from sharing with one another.
Ages 6-12 Years,
Elementary children work in a rich and stimulating environment to expand their understanding of the universe and their individual purpose. They work independently and in small groups, learning about culture, geography, biology, history, languages, mathematics, science, music, and art. Various field trips and outdoor activities support this exploration. Much of the activity takes place in groups, with children sharing, collaborating, and passionately exploring materials together. Critical thinking and the democratic process are stressed.
Ages 12-15 Years
As in all our other levels, a Montessori Adolescent Program, more commonly known as Middle School, is a prepared learning environment based on the developmental needs of the student. This environment is designed to nurture the psychological, emotional, social, physical and intellectual growth of the adolescent – essentially, the whole child. The students learn through integrated, hands-on projects with a focus on the story of human interdependency, the study of civilization and the natural world.