In the Montessori preschool, five distinct areas constitute the prepared environment:
This area enhances the development of task organization and cognitive order through care of self, care of the environment, exercises of grace and courtesy, and coordination of physical movement. Creative, time-tested activities assist the child in developing a sense of order, concentration, self esteem, independence, and respect for others; fine motor skills, grace, courtesy, and confidence.
This area enables the child to order, classify, and describe sensory impressions in relation to length, width, temperature, mass, color and pitch. Sensorial activities refine the child’s ability to discriminate, appreciate and understand the world through his or her senses of sight, touch, taste and sound.
The math area makes use of manipulative materials to enable the child to internalize concepts of number, symbol, sequence, operations, and memorization of basic facts. Children first learn to count to ten, and systematically progress to solving complex addition, subtraction, multiplication and division questions. Activities start with a concrete experience and lead to an abstract intellectual understanding.
Culture and Science Activities
Cultural and Science studies expose the child to basics in geography, history, and life sciences. Music, art, and movement education are part of the integrated cultural curriculum. For Geography- Children first learn about land, water and air, and then progress to study the world’s great regions. History- By examining their own timeline from birth to present, and their own family tree, children gain their first sense of history, and the concept of time is brought to life. Botany- The study of botany is child centered, using live plants as a knowledge and interest catalyst. Zoology- Children learn to appreciate animals and to respect their needs, habits and special characteristics.
A sequential time tested program including phonetic sounds, phonetic reading and writing, irregular or sight words, phonograms and blends, which lead to fluent reading.