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WHAT IS IT?
It is a five day program.
WHO TEACHES IT?
Our teachers are all trained to teach up to the age of 6 years, and many are certified to teach beyond that.
WHAT IS THE ROLE OF THE TEACHER IN THE MONTESSORI CLASSROOM?
The Montessori teacher has an unobtrusive role in the classroom. She is there as a guide. She gives a child the opportunity of teaching himself through the use of Montessori materials when he is most ready and eager to learn a subject. The child learns by doing and his knowledge is acquired by absorption and understanding. His learning is reinforced by repetition of work, and the inner satisfaction of mastering a task or understanding a subject.
In contrast, the usual role of the traditional teacher is to be the controller of the classroom. She is the enforcer of discipline and the center of the classroom. The teaching is done by the teacher and learning is reinforced by external repetition, rewards and punishment as well as peer group pressure.
WHERE IS IT?
It is in the Montessori classroom. Your child will be learning on an individual basis as well as in group activities. As he progresses to more complex experiences, the necessary books, workbooks and other materials will be made available to him.
WHAT IS THE CURRICULUM IN THE KINDERGARTEN PROGRAM?
The curriculum is structured by the child who sets his own learning pace. It is an individual curriculum. In a traditional kindergarten, the curriculum is established for the class, and is based upon the group’s norm. This fixed curriculum is limiting to the child who is an eager learner.
WHAT ARE THE ADVANTAGES?
There are many advantages to continuing with Montessori through the kindergarten year. For the returning Montessori child, it is the year that all previous learning will fall into place. This is the year that things really happen.
By not returning, the ball is dropped. The learning that he had done in preparation for this year is not brought together. The previous years are not wasted, but they are not built upon in a traditional Kindergarten as they are here in Montessori. It is stopping in mid air, and really is a loss to the child.
The Kindergarten year at Montessori is the most productive year of a Montessori education. Some Montessori educators describe this year as the time when there is a ‘learning explosion’. This is a time that the learning absorbed during the earlier years of Montessori training fit together, the child shows spurts of intellectual growth. Keeping the child in the Montessori environment during this tear continues the process made earlier and reinforces his learning skills and good learning habits.
HOW ARE GOOD LEARNING HABITS DEVELOPED?
Northfield Montessori fosters good learning habits through developing self-discipline, concentration, a sense of order and persistence in completing a task.
WOULD TRANSFERRING TO A TRADITIONAL SCHOOL AT THE KINDERGARTEN LEVEL BE MORE LOGICAL THAN AT FIRST GRADE?
No, it would not. The Montessori classroom is more closely related to the kindergarten than to the first grade. The transition is more natural at the first grade level.
WHAT HAPPENS WHEN MY CHILD GOES TO FIRST GRADE?
This common concern is frequently expressed. No child can learn too much. He will not be bored, but should be an eager learner, and have a positive attitude towards school. He should have a fine foundation for future school experiences that are very positive.
ARE THE FIVE YEAR OLDS SEPARATED FROM THE THREE YEAR OLDS?
No. They are not. It is to the advantage of all the children that they be mixed. Children learn more from other children than they do from adults. The older child reinforces his own learning by helping a younger child. He also is less apt to be a bully and to be more considerate by sharing a classroom with these younger children. Children are encouraged to help and teach each other. It does not impede their academic or social growth. By the very nature of their studies however, the older children will tend to be involved in a number of activities on their own.
IS THERE PRESSURE APPLIED UPON A CHILD TO ACHIEVE CERTAIN STANDARDS DURING THE KINDERGARTEN YEARS?
There is an absence of pressure applied upon a child. Instead, there are unlimited opportunities for growth. Special efforts are made to guide the child.
IS ACADEMIC ACHIEVEMENT ALL THAT IS STRESSED?
No, it is not. A well-rounded school experience which includes social and cultural development is stressed. Remember, we are preparing your child for the future, so our total cirriculum planning is done to give your child the best foundation for his academic progress.
The Montessori goal is to stimulate each child’s innate curiosity to instill in him the desire to learn so that he may derive satisfaction from his accomplishments and become motivated to increase his knowledge.
A DIFFERENCE TO BE A DIFFERENCE HAS TO MAKE A DIFFERENCE
The longer that the child is in the Montessori environment, the greater the probability that the child will make the learning skills and good learning habits he has acquired a permanent part of his development. Northfield Montessori believes that this should make a difference in how well he does in his later school years.