At LMS children explore their own identities as they interact empathetically with people from diverse backgrounds.
LMS aims to nurture in each student the construction of a knowledgeable, confident identity as an individual and as a member of multiple cultural groups (such as gender, race, ethnicity, or class). We enable children to have comfortable, empathetic interactions with people from diverse backgrounds. We also foster each child’s ability to recognize bias and injustice, and cultivate each child’s ability to stand up, individually and with others, against bias or injustice.
We expose young children to the defining elements of cultures: traditions, symbols, food, clothing, customs and beliefs.
Young children have a natural interest in the relationships between parts and the whole, and our Children’s House teachers exploit this interest to introduce them to world geography and cultures. Children assemble puzzle maps of oceans and continents, and they learn to identify land and water forms. We expose them to the defining elements of culture: traditions, symbols, food, clothing, customs and beliefs. As their curiosity about similarities and differences develops, along with their abilities to discriminate, they compare and contrast their own family traditions and those of others in the classroom.
The concept of time is elusive at this age, so we help them by sharpening their awareness of their own growth and aging processes. We highlight the cycles and routines that give us structure and order. The kindergarten program culminates with a celebratory study of our solar system.
Three to six-year-olds are in what Dr. Montessori called a “sensitive period” for language acquisition.
Three to six-year-olds are in what Dr. Montessori called a “sensitive period” for language acquisition. They delight in conversation. They begin to associate sounds, symbols, and meaning, the foundation of both reading and writing. Our classrooms surround children with language experiences. We provide a balanced literacy program in which informal conversations enrich more formal discussions and interactive "read-aloud" sessions.
At LMS, children learn to read by writing words and stories using a moveable alphabet of cutout letters. Because children’s mental language abilities develop before their manual ability to form letters, they are encouraged to manipulate these symbols before putting pencil to paper to form letters and words. Children enthusiastically practice phonics skills as they sort attractive objects according to their component sounds, and they experience the thrill of decoding their first books. Reading is a natural outgrowth of mental writing activities, and children often seem to “explode” into reading, a joyful and identifiable moment for child, parent and teacher.
LMS Children’s House teachers read to children frequently to help them develop sequencing and conceptualization skills toward critical thinking abilities. They encourage children to predict, to expand, and to connect content to their own lives and to the lives of others.
Montessori’s extraordinary mathematical materials enable children to begin abstract concept formation as they develop operational thought.
During the three-year Children’s House program, children progress from Piaget’s “preoperational” stage of development into “concrete operations.” Montessori’s extraordinary mathematical materials enable children to begin abstract concept formation as they develop operational thought. Children use sensorial materials to isolate concepts such as size, form, weight, and volume, eventually internalizing the abstract concept each represents. The Practical Life materials help children develop the ability to concentrate on explicit sequences, and it helps them become confident in their ability to make judgments. These skills are essential to the construction of their mathematical mind.
The Mathematics curriculum for three to six year olds is organized around these objectives:
• Acquisition of the concepts of number and quantity, including zero.
• Development of number theory including counting sequences and odd/even numbers
• Understanding of the concept of place value
• Development of a vocabulary of mathematical terms
• Introduction to basic operations
• Introduction to memorization of math facts
• Naturalistic data collection and representation
• Mathematical problem solving
• Understanding of measurable attributes
• Introduction to geometric shapes and solids
Within each area, children use materials that introduce the initial concept and then allow for continued exploration and repetition with variety, so concepts can be mastered, expanded, applied, and revised.
The Children’s House music program emphasizes singing and expressive movement.
The Children’s House music program emphasizes singing and expressive movement. The primary goals are to create a safe and inviting atmosphere in which to move and vocalize as a group, and occasionally as individuals. Rhythmic and expressive movements accompany the songs and games, and encourage entrainment, concentration and flow.
|CH Physical Education|
Young children experience personal feelings of success and achievement through movement.
As young children experience personal feelings of success and achievement through movement, they learn about their spatial relationships with others. They acknowledge that others may share their space; they learn to move about in their space without interfering with others; and they learn to take turns and share interactions with others. This can be a first step in becoming a teammate and in participating in larger group activities.
Kindergarten physical education focuses on the development of fundamental motor skills and movement experiences. Students explore different ways their bodies move in relation to themselves, others, and various objects. They discover the joy of playing with friends, and they learn how social interaction can make activities more fun.
|CH Practical Life|
Practical Life activities in the Children’s House classroom take advantage of a “sensitive period for order" to help them build independence.
Young children experience what Montessori called a “sensitive period for order." Practical Life activities in the Children’s House classroom take advantage of this natural tendency to help children build their independence. Teachers introduce precisely sequenced activities that children then freely chose and repeat as needed or desired.
While the three-year-old child chooses Practical Life activities for the sheer enjoyment of it, the older children undertake these activities to accomplish a goal. All of the children independently practice tasks that have a clear beginning, middle, and ending. The children experience the “narrative” of sequenced learning, and they internalize this order as they improve their ability to concentrate. As the child becomes increasingly able to order her thoughts and to express them clearly, she prepares for developing language and math skills.
Three to six-year-olds are active investigators. Our specialized materials encourage creativity, versatility and experimentation.
Three to six-year-olds are, by nature, active investigators. Cause and effect questions dominate their interactions as they seek to understand their physical environment. Through interaction with Sensorial materials, they learn to discriminate between sensory impressions and to use these impressions to guide their own learning. Through manipulation of materials, they internalize concepts of size, dimension, color, weight, form, smell, taste, sound and texture and, eventually, develop the language to verbalize them.
The nature of these magnificent Montessori materials, which isolate sensorial dimensions and are self-correcting, allows children to develop a strong sense of order that underlies clear, logical thought. Since the materials also lend themselves to variations, children’s experiences with them also encourage creativity, versatility and experimentation. (Since the Sensorial materials also contribute to mathematical concept development, they are further described in the Mathematics Curriculum.)
The Children’s House Spanish Program aims for children to have fun while learning Spanish in various ways.
The Children’s House Spanish Program aims for children to have fun while learning Spanish in various ways. We immerse students in Spanish during their class so that they increase their understanding by listening, speaking, and singing. We also promote an appreciation of the diverse cultures of Spain and Latin America in order to widen children’s global perspective.
|CH Visual Art|
Children's House students explore a range of materials and techniques. They experiment with paint and color mixing, clay, printmaking, and building.
Children in the Children’s House transition from the scribble stage of a three-year-old to the symbolic drawing stage of a kindergarten child able to draw recognizable objects. Children learn that they can express their ideas, feel confident in their ability as artists, and begin to develop a visual literacy. They explore a range of materials and techniques. They experiment with paint and color mixing, clay, printmaking, and building. Art projects may also enhance special areas in the classroom curriculum and are collaboratively planned by both art and classroom teachers. Exhibiting artwork throughout the school allows us to celebrate each child’s creativity and work.
Children's House Classroom pages
Our Children's House students become engrossed in their work as they explore with their friends the connections between objects and ideas.
Maria Montessori called early childhood a "period of absorbency." As young children make sense of their world, they absorb vast amounts of vocabulary as well as the coding systems for both language and mathematics. They imitate the behaviors and values of their carefully practiced teachers.
Our classrooms surround children with language experiences. Our balanced literacy program follows children’s natural paths as it builds a solid foundation for reading and writing. Young children at LMS develop their mathematical skills and aptitudes as they learn to categorize and order an intriguing variety of objects. Children explore relationships among specially designed sensorial materials, and they use Montessori math beads to see and feel concepts of numeration.
LMS Children’s House classes are conscious communities where children practice the arts of grace, courtesy and authentic communication. They learn to control themselves in group situations, and they learn to use conflict resolution skills to stand up for themselves and what they believe.
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