The Lawrence Montessori School Kindergarten curriculum is integrated so that children can understand the critical relationship among all subjects and all aspects of life. Our curriculum covers mathematics, language, biology, botany, physical sciences, history, and geography as well as the arts – music, creative movement, and fine art. During a typical work session in the classroom, the children are engaged in individualized work where they set their goals, manage time, and work on projects using a variety of resources in addition to the didactic Montessori materials. All subjects are seamlessly intertwined so the children are not taught subjects in isolation.
The Kindergarten curriculum is designed to build upon the existing knowledge the child has acquired during the Primary Years. They know and understand the concept of linear counting up to 1000. Using the advanced Montessori materials, they begin learning arithmetic and the concepts of static and dynamic addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division into the thousands. The children learn plane geometry and calculate area and degrees of angles.
In the language arts, the children are already reading above grade level, and are challenged to write creatively; additionally, they are introduced to parts of speech and grammar. The Montessori classroom offers many opportunities for the students to expand their knowledge when they are motivated by spontaneous interest. Puzzle maps of the continents are designed to teach cultural and political geography. Finally, our students work with a variety of biology materials to gain a better understanding of botany and zoology.
Our Kindergarten class hums with motivated, focused activity. It is in the Kindergarten year that your child will be "at the top of the class" in terms of seniority. The responsibility and pride children feel in this role gives a great sense of accomplishment. The multi-age experience offers many opportunities for five year-olds to help the younger children and to be competent role models. In addition to reinforcing their academic knowledge, this experience enhances their self-esteem and develops their self-confidence – two qualities which enable them to try new challenges.
We are proud of the academic achievements of our students and are confident that we have instilled in them a lifelong love of learning. The Montessori Method of education has prepared the children not only for academic success, but has instilled in them civic and moral responsibility so that they are successful throughout their lives.
The Montessori classroom is a "living room" for children. It is filled with a rich variety of specially designed materials for the children to use in every area: reading, writing, mathematics, science, geography, practical life, and sensorial development. The abundance of materials makes it possible for the children to exercise more self-direction and independent work than is usually possible in a traditional classroom. They are given many more choices than a traditional environment could provide. Children choose their activities from open shelves with self-correcting materials and work in distinct work areas – on tables or on rugs on the floor. Over a period of time, the children develop into a "normalized community" working with high concentration and few interruptions. We place high value on the child's growing ability to make constructive choices, exercise self-control, and work independently of the adult.
In our Montessori Kindergarten classroom children also have the important advantage of remaining with children of mixed ages. Mixing ages provides our kindergarten children with abundant opportunities to develop leadership skills and responsibility and gives the children greater social diversity. This is the 'leadership year.' They have friends of all ages. The mixed ages and widely varied achievement levels of the children greatly minimize comparisons and competition, which can be so damaging to young children. It also does wonders for a kindergarten child's self-esteem to be admired and looked up to by the younger children. The traditional kindergarten, by contrast, only has children who are five years old, and in a room full of five year olds, only a few can be leaders.
The key concept in Montessori is the child's interest and readiness for advanced work. If a child is not developmentally ready to go on, she is not left behind or made to feel like a failure. Our goal is not to ensure that our children develop at a predetermined rate, but to ensure that whatever they do, they do well. Most Montessori children master a tremendous amount of information and skills. Even in the rare case where one of our children may not have made as much progress as we would have wished, he will usually be moving along steadily at his own pace and will feel good about himself as a learner.
The core of Lawrence Montessori School’s Kindergarten curriculum is language, mathematics, science, geography practical life, and sensorial. In addition to the core Kindergarten curriculum, the child is also presented with history, music, art, and movement education. Each of the core subject areas are discussed further in the following sections.
The Montessori Kindergarten Program
5005 Legends Drive, Lawrence, KS 66049 (785) 840-9555 firstname.lastname@example.org