Although the entrance age varies in individual schools, a child can usually enter a Montessori classroom between the ages of 18 months and 6 years. It simply depends on when the child can be happy and comfortable in a classroom setting.
Our program at Northwest Montessori includes:
- a toddler campus for children ages 18 months – 2.5 years
- a pre-primary campus for children ages 2.5 years – 3.5 years
- a primary campus for children ages 3.5 years – 4.5 years
- and an advanced primary/Kindergarten campus for children ages 4.5 years – 6 years
The child begins with the most basic educational activities and moves towards more complex tasks at his/her own pace based on his/her interest and ability.
The Montessori materials in our classrooms will help a child develop the necessary concentration, coordination and working habits needed for successfully performing at advanced levels in language, math, science, and geography.
Basic skills in reading and writing are developed using sandpaper letters, movable alphabets, phonetic objects boxes, phonetic cards and booklets. As children progress through the program, they are introduced to parts of speech, which are learned through activities, crafts, and music. When our students master writing the alphabet, they will enter the Primary Phonics Reading Program, which are workbooks K-12.
Our mathematics materials enable the child to understand the basic concepts of numbers, symbols, addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. These materials also introduce the child to more advanced concepts of clockwork, fractions and algebraic decimals.
Our students are introduced to science through a variety of ways. Classification plays a huge role in a child’s first exposure to science concepts (i.e. living/non-living and plants/animals). We also cover many other aspects of science such as botany, where we study about the parts of a tree and flower, and zoology, where we study and differentiate between reptiles, mammals, amphibians, birds, and fish. Each class presents weekly science experiments on magnets, rocks, evaporation, bubbles, matter, etc. Our older students participate in an annual science fair and present experiments on a wide array of topics.
Our students are introduced to the globe, continents, oceans, land formations and world maps. They learn about the different countries in each continent, those countries’ flags, the 50 states of the U.S, and the U.S. state capitals. We encourage presentations on specific countries and cultures from parents and others from the Austin community throughout the year.
Sensorial materials help each child develop his/her senses by offering concrete experiences. The sensory materials we provide to our students isolate particular qualities such as shape, color, texture, size, sound, flavor and weight. We believe these materials are fundamental in engaging our students’ attention with hands-on work. These sensorial materials are largely self-correcting; therefore, our students can accomplish the exercises on their own and gain a greater understanding of the world around them.
Children are encouraged to work independently on age appropriate, theme-oriented arts and crafts projects designed to develop hand-eye coordination and attention, as well as a sense of imagination and creativity.
Musical sing-a-longs, musical instrument instruction, and special musical performances encourage concentration and self-expression, while simultaneously nurturing children’s natural creativity and love of music. The talented children’s musician John Emery, or the “Music Man” as we like to call him, performs for each campus every Friday morning. Nick and Paige perform at our special events and teach the students vocal and breathing exercises monthly.
Northwest Montessori believes the practice of yoga offers our students an excellent opportunity to not only enhance their flexibility and coordination, but also improve their concentration and sense of calm. Yoga encourages children’s self-confidence and guides them in their development of self-awareness and self-control. We implement the practice of yoga from ages 3 to 6 years in our classrooms every Thursday.
Practical life exercises are related to the home environment and encourage grace, courtesy, and self-care. Children practice activities such as cutting, sweeping, folding, and washing with the purpose of developing greater concentration and attention to detail. Children learn the importance of finishing each task and putting away all the materials before moving on to another activity