At three years, sometimes earlier, children are ready to join one of our Primary/Preschool environments. We have three classrooms: The Dolphins, The Otters and The Octopus. Here they will stay for three years & through Kindergarten.
In this mixed-aged environment children participate in a natural social setting growing into the unique opportunity to be leaders in their third year. The main pedagogical areas of a Primary classroom include the Practical Life area, the Sensorial area, the Language area, the Mathematics area, and the Cultural area. A variety of beautiful and meticulously crafted Montessori materials fills each of these areas, meeting the children’s various developmental stages.
Lessons begin with presentations of concrete concepts such as size or volume (sensorial), sounds (language), and quantities (mathematics), and gradually and logically progress toward abstraction, such as the words ‘big’ and ‘small’ for the concept of size, the shapes of the sounds (letters), and the numerals associated with quantities while doing mathematical operations. Lessons from a Montessori teacher progress in a logical order according to each individual’s readiness, and each lesson and material has multiple purposes, preparing the child for increasingly complex and challenging activities. The Montessori teacher is specially trained to carefully observe children for their interests and readiness to progress through the curriculum.
The Montessori Environment is filled with many materials, each with several phases and extensions. In order for a child to fully benefit from a Montessori education, consistent attendance is crucial. This is why the Primary Program is a five day per week program. It is imperative for a child to attend school consistently and on time to benefit from the full three hour work period each day. Our older children are enrolled for full days to enjoy the benefits that the afternoon period offers to further explore the materials in more depth and maximize their experience in the classroom.
The Primary Program is a three year program, with three age groups in one class. Many lessons converge by the third year, and the purposes of many materials are revealed, as these children enter the age of abstraction and the seeds of knowledge planted in the first two years begin to truly bloom.