Elementary: A “Cosmic” Approach to Learning
In our elementary program, children gain a deep understanding of the hows and whys of the world as they use a discovery-based approach to learning. Our classes are divided into lower elementary (ages 6 to 9) and upper elementary (ages 9 to 12) groups.
The joy of discovery
Elementary students connect subjects together in a meaningful or “cosmic” way and they explore the interrelationships that exist among all of the math, language and cultural subjects. (See the Five Great Lessons.)
Our Montessori elementary teachers are passionate about giving lessons that inspire their students to learn through exploring and using their imaginations. Lessons are personalized and given at each student’s pace, capitalizing on the student’s particular areas of interest. Hands-on materials are used to clarify abstract ideas and independent work is encouraged. Students often work in small groups or with mentors to help them learn to work cooperatively to develop strong social skills.
Collaboration and community
All of the aspects of the elementary community are designed to support the strong social needs of the students. They develop collaborative skills, self-confidence, leadership skills and compassion through their group work. Our teachers are also skilled guides in helping the children to work through conflict, helping them to solve their own issues in a kind and compassionate way.
The Montessori elementary curriculum is divided into six subject areas: math, language, history, geography, biology and geometry. Using concrete, semi-concrete and abstract materials, the students are giving individual and small group lessons in each subject area. Follow-up work is done independently with careful teacher guidance. Teachers conduct daily assessments of each child and plan lessons accordingly. Off campus learning, including three-day educational sessions at The Mountain Institute for advanced students, is an important element of the elementary curriculum. Based on our 38 years of experience, students who complete our elementary program are extremely well-prepared to be successful in whatever future educational setting they choose.
Hours in attendance: elementary students attend school from 8:00 a.m. to 2:50 p.m.
Off Campus Learning
“Education is acquired not by listening to words but by experiences upon the environment.” Dr. Maria Montessori
Off campus learning is a major component of the Montessori approach to education. Children at all levels enrich their academic lessons through multi-sensorial learning experiences off campus, including field trips and other interactive activities. These include an annual three-day session at The Mountain Institute at Spruce Knob for advanced students.