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Dr Maria Montessori characterized the 3 to 6 year old child as possessing an extraordinary capacity, the ability to absorb information from his/her surrounding. Dr Montessori named this quality as the “absorbent mind”. The child from 3 to 6 is a sensorial explorer, soaking up every aspect of the environment, including language and culture. The corresponding educational environment should support the natural drive of the child to become competent and independent with the motto “to help me do it myself”. The Montessori approach embraces the full development of the child addressing all aspect of the child’s development.
The program at DMS is designed to meet the physical, social, emotional, and cognitive need of each child. The Montessori materials are designed to appeal to the child’s natural desire to learn. Children are encouraged to develop good work habit and share in the responsibility of their learning. They work at their own pace and on their own level of learning with gentle guidance from dedicated teachers. The materials in the Montessori environment are designed to isolate one concept at a time in every concrete manner.
Children work with material that are self-correcting thus allowing for self-education. Errors are viewed as a necessary and helpful part of the learning process. The Montessori material provide a bridge from the known to the unknown allowing children to evolve gradually from concrete experience based learning toward a increasingly abstract thought. With our curriculum, there are ample opportunities for more repetition and self-discovery throughout the classroom. All the curriculum areas have a wide range of material and activities that appeal to all, from the youngest to the oldest student
The activities of Practical Life help the child master day to day needs of taking care of himself, of others and his/her environment. Activities in this area are designed to give children opportunities to practice the skill necessary for everyday life. Children get great satisfaction in the simple task of everyday life. These exercises include pouring liquid, preparing food, washing dishes, sweeping, mopping, setting the table, polishing silver, shoes and showing grace and courtesy in social encounters. Children are taught how to care for their own environment and are given lesson in grace and courtesy. Through these task and experiences, children learn to concentrate, coordinate their movement, develop fine motor skill and a sense of order. Practical life activities are the foundation of all future academic work because they promote concentration, order and complete work cycle.
Montessori observed that the children between the age of three to six year have a sensitive period for absorbing language; both spoken and written. The verbal skill of the young child are stimulated every moment at DMS through conversation and exposure to high quality children’s books. Reading and writing are intimately connected and integrated strategies are offered to ensure success. Opportunities such as listening to stories or reciting poem, singing and conversing with others, introducing the Montessori sandpaper letters connect each spoken sound with its symbol thus supporting the developmental of writing and eventually reading. A variety of fun and enriching activities are available to facilitate the child’s emerging writing skill, beginning with the early scribbling stage to keeping a daily journal. This is done through phonics, reading, writing mechanism, hand writing, development and self-expression.
The Montessori curriculum provide a wide range of activities to learn more about the world around him. They are presented in sensorial ways with specially designed material and real life experiences. Science, Geography, History, Art and Music are all incorporated into the early childhood environment. In geography, children learn not only about the names of countries, but the life of people and their respective culture. They develop a sense of respect for different culture recognizing that we all belong to the family of people. Young children are natural scientist. Watching and caring for animal and plant create an interest in science lesson and a reverence for life. Art and Music give the children opportunity for creative and joyful self-expression as well as experiences with great music and works of art.
A basic tenant of Montessori education is that understanding is often a matter of seeing and touching. Special equipment help the child to absorb abstract concept through the use of concrete material. A broad spectrum of activities in the room allow one child to count sets of five or six button while next to him a child is adding four digit number, through the use of manipulatives. The Montessori Math material and lesson help children to develop an understanding of Math concept through the manipulation of concrete materials, thus building a secure foundation of Math principle, skill and problem solving abilities. It begins with concrete understanding of quantity, symbol, four operation and progress toward using this concept without the aid of Montessori material.
The sensorial materials are designed to enable 3 to 6 year old children to identify, refine and order the classified sensorial impressions, obtained through their senses by seeing, smelling, tasting, listening to, touching and further exploration of the environment. The sensorial material aid in his /her power of observation, discrimination of senses by discriminating color, size, shape, texture and sound. Children learn best when allowed to touch, feel, hold, smell, listen, and taste. The sensorial properties of these material enable the children to classify and eventually name object and attributes in their environment. The sensorial material is designed to refine the senses while also preparing the child for further learning in Math and Language.
Dr. Maria Montessori, Creator of the Montessori Education