Art, music and physical education
Physical education and movement
“Movement, or physical activity, is an essential factor in intellectual growth.” Dr. Maria Montessori
Physical activity is integral to a Montessori education. Primary students enjoy activity in our beautiful campus outdoor environment, while lower and upper elementary students particulate in a full physical education curriculum. Utilizing facilities at the University of Charleston pool and Triana Field, along with those in the outdoor environment, Nancy Johnston and other members of our full-time, Montessori trained faculty help children develop a positive attitude toward the improvement of physical health, strength and coordination. Sixth-year and middle school students are eligible to participate in the MMS Cross Country team, which competes against other Kanawha County Middle Schools.
Art is an important element in the Montessori integrated approach to learning. Under the direction of art teachers Barrie Kaufman and Nancy Johnston and classroom teachers, students learn to communicate and express themselves visually in a variety of mediums.
Music and performing arts
The MMS music curriculum helps children develop language, memory, math, social and emotional skills as well as build a lifetime appreciation of the arts. Music faculty members include Karen Morris, a trained Kindermusik and Orff method music instructor, Bernard DiGregorio, principal violist with the West Virginia Symphony Orchestra, and Ron Sowell, music director of Mountain Stage (artist-in-residence). Students participate in class instruction in vocal and Orff instruments, and small-group and private strings and piano lessons are also available. Winter and spring concerts provide a showcase for students to communicate through vocal and instrumental music, drama, dance and movement. (Take a look at our 2013 show, which featured the premiere of Life-Lights and other presentations.)
Our music curriculum includes an annual songwriting workshop with Mira Stanley and Chuck E. Costa, professional songwriters and educators who perform as award-winning indie pop duo, The Sea The Sea. “At Mountaineer Montessori,” the MMS school song, is one of the many delightful original compositions written by our students through this annual project. We invite you to you to take a listen.