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Curriculum

     OUR CURRICULUM meets or even betters the curriculum set by the Ontario Ministry of Education and Training.  Our kindergarten program not only meets the policy document for kindergarten put forth by the Ministry, but the Montessori teaching method allows each child to develop and advance according to his own pace.

 The Primary Areas of Curriculum Include the following;

 1.     PRACTICAL LIFE 

 The child works to perfect him/herself through exercises of taking care of him/herself, each other and his environment.

 Practical Life Activities based on day to day life experiences have been designed to satisfy the child’s changing developmental needs. 

 “Yet in point of fact, no other occupations which could be undertaken by the children of this stage (3-5) could be more important for their whole development – physical, mental, and moral than these ‘exercises of practical life’ as they are called.” Standing, E.M., Her Life & Work

 The first area of Practical Life Activities is manipulative activities that involve five essential movements which assist in development of Motor Skills.  These movements include; 3 finger grasp (pincer grasp), wrist rotation, wrist twisting, pouring and cutting.

 The second area of Practical Life Activities are activities based on “Care of Self” These activities assist the child in developing independence. 

 The third area concentrates on “Care of the Environment”, and lastly the fourth area of Practical Life concentrates on Equilibrium and Grace (grace / courtesy / movement). 

 All of these Practical Life activities have a simple concrete understandable purpose, which allows the child to be actively involved in self-education.  Motives of these activities respond to the ‘Sensitive Period’ of the child.  Through these various exercises, the child develops intellectually.  These exercises assist the child in developing concentration and orderly work habits, perseverance and persistence in following through an activity to its logical conclusion.  They also assist in the development of the will, by providing opportunities to choose and decide and act responsibly.  They help the body and minds interact when performing the task and following through a sequence of order assists in self-discipline.                                    

2.     SENSORIAL

 The child is provided with specific opportunities for exploration, which refine the sense and also indirectly prepare the child for mathematics and language.  These materials are carefully designed to isolate one attribute at a time, so that the child can concentrate directly on distinguishing and naming that particular trait; (ie. Red Rods / for length, Baric Tablets / weight, Thermic Tablets / temperature).  The materials provide stimuli for self-education through self-discovery and self-correction.

 3.     LANGUAGE

 A phonetic approach to language development.

 The development of language begins at birth with what is receptive or rather what a child hears.  This gradually develops into what is expressive, how the child communicates verbally.  Within a Montessori classroom many activities assist to help children expand vocabulary and refine and correct pronunciation.  Both the hand and the mind are stimulated as Maria Montessori described them as being dependant on one another. 

 4.     MATHEMATICS

 Teaching materials offer an exciting, concrete experience for number concepts and operations.

In the Montessori Method, the development of the mathematical mind is one of the most important.  Order and precision which were provided through different purposeful activities and exact presentations were always the keys to spontaneous work in the school and were improving the sense of order of the children.    Madame Montessori had realized that articles of precision did not occur in the child’s ordinary environment and that the child’s inborn mathematical tendencies might suffer from lack of opportunities.  Therefore she created a lot Montessori Materials to fulfill this tendency but not with the old belief of math, she said, “The teaching of arithmetic should start with sense perceptions and be based on knowledge of concrete objects.” Montessori International, Vol 9.

 5.     CULTURAL STUDIES

 Include biology, general science, geography, history, art and music.

 Children are encouraged to study Culture in order to gain knowledge, to find their place in the world and to see harmony in it; to feel a bond with it and protect it. 

 It is particularly important to highlight the ecological aspects of the science that is being taught to the child in the classroom.  As a result of the work done in the Montessori classroom in both zoology and botany the child develops an affinity with life forms that he encounters in his environment and learns to treat them with wonder and respect which will ultimately lead to a more complete understanding of the ecological balance of life within the world.

Montessori believed that Geography should be introduced so that the child gets a sense of where he is in terms of space on the planet and using the globe where he is among the Continents. 

Moreover, just as children are fascinated by the world in which they find themselves they also listen with delight when you tell them stories about the way the world used to be.  This is how History is introduced in the Montessori classroom.  Dr. Maria Montessori believed, the more people loved things around them, the more they would protect it, and thence this world would be a more peaceful place.

 6.     FRENCH

At the CASA level, basic French is introduced.  Words and language structures are taught through songs, action games, and activities both oral and written. Children focus on themes such as the following: food

  • animals
  • colours
  • days of the week
  • numbers
  • parts of the body

7.     MUSIC

The children are exposed to instruments and songs during circle time.  Classical composers and their music are explored within the classrooms.

8.     HOMEWORK

A gradual introduction of homework begins to those children in their 3rd. year of the CASA program.

9.    FIELD TRIPS

The CASA children go on field trips off school property (i.e. farm, zoo, kortright, etc.).  Guest speakers are also invited at times to the school to enhance our school’s programs (i.e. fire dept., reptilian, dairy farmers, etc.)

10.    ACADEMIC EVALUATION

There is a strong emphasis on the academic standings of our children.  Academic progress is documented on an on-going basis and progress reports are given to the parents at the end of each year.

 

 

 

     
 
 
 
 
 
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