Elementary

  •   students6  students47  students41  students39  students48

    Private School

    Ages 6 to 12 years old
    For children ages 6-12, the elementary curriculum encompasses language, math, geometry, physical geography, zoology, history, botany, science, music, french, theology / christian education embedded in the curriculum and worldview. The elementary work frequently involves research, discussion, and large-scale projects.
     
    The Montessori elementary curriculum builds on the preschool curriculum and inspires students to become independent thinkers. A Montessori elementary classroom may look quite different than a Montessori preschool environment as students reach the second plane of development and become more social.
     
    Integrated studies provide students with unique and age-appropriate materials that help them to become accountable for their use of time, for accuracy in their work and to evaluate their strengths and areas of growth. Our students have individualized work plans to allow them to use time effectively and to make appropriate choices.
    • 8:30am-9am
      MORNING MEETING
      Morning meetings in the elementary classroom influence the student's attitudes and behaviours, both individually and collectively. These regular meetings are opportunities to participate in collective problem solving, educate students for peacemaking and alter the social dynamics of the classroom. The students used class meetings to clarify school rules and to resolve interpersonal conflicts with the support of the group. Meetings provided opportunities for collective problem-solving in an atmosphere of perceived fairness, which seemed to contribute to a more peaceful classroom climate. Morning meetings are sometimes used for class presentations, public speaking, or group novel study. Morning meeting is an essential component to our day.
    • 9AM-11:30AM
      WORK CYCLE 1

      During the uninterrupted work cycle, students engage in developmentally appropriate work. The work includes Montessori hands-on materials that are appropriate for the individual needs of each student. The teacher will be working with students individually and in small groups, in hands-on engaging Montessori lessons. Students will be collaborating as they work on a task or research project together. Students are also managing work expectations. A contract, work plan, or work journal is used to help with organization and time management skills.

      In the Montessori elementary environment, the students themselves decide what they will learn based on their own personal interests. The Montessori teacher does not decide which areas the students will explore, what lessons will be learned, or what work should be done. That is up to each individual student. Because of this, Montessori students’ learning is deeper and broader than students who learn through memorization and test taking.

    • 11:30am-12:30pm
      OUTDOOR TIME/ BREAK

      Our students engage in gross motor development through personal strength and fitness activities including a boot camp type warm up. Students are often taken along the Rotary Trail where they will connect with nature, build forts, create art outdoors, or participate in organized games. They also often visit the park in York and play on the climbers, catch frogs or crayfish or explore nature.

      Outdoor time consists of developing gross motor skills through introduction to various sports, running/ cross country, and other activities often chosen by the student's themselves.
    • 12:30pm-1:30pm
      LUNCH TIME

      Food and meal times are an important and essential part of everyday life. In a Montessori classroom, we work to create a peaceful and healthful meal experience for our children as we place great value on both the experience and the consumption of food.

      Lunch and snack times are opportunities for students to practice independence and to develop important life skills such as preparation of food, preparation of meal space, table setting, manners, healthy food options, and clean up. We organize different opportunities according to the children's ages to practice these skills. For example, an Early Childhood or Lower Elementary classroom might have a weekly "formal snack" where several children prepare and serve the rest of the class. They practice appropriate vocabulary; "would you like some grapes", "yes please" or "no thank you" and they wait until the entire class is served until they begin eating. Our students practice setting the table for the entire class, using placemats, table settings, and centrepieces, and then share a meal together. Our Leader of the Day program allows students to share foods that they enjoy with their peers and gives students opportunities to try new foods. These are just some examples of how we prepare children for successful and graceful meal times.

      We place a lot of value on the foods that our students consume. Healthy snacks are required and food preparation lessons are often given to encourage students to try new foods and to learn to cook for and serve others. In a Montessori classroom, the children are physically engaged throughout the day. The hand is the instrument of the mind and at varying levels, the students' brains are still developing. Therefore, healthy foods that give the body energy and that fuel the mind to encourage concentration and order are essential to a child's success and ability to reach their full potential.

    • 1:30-3:00PM
      WORK PERIOD 2
    • ELEMENTARY GOING OUT
      Exploring and absorbing the world beyond the classroom are integral components of the Montessori elementary experience. At the start of each year, we discuss going out activities with our elementary students. We discuss our field trip budget and the richness these experiences can provide us. As a group, we brainstorm a list of places we would like to go. The students choose most field trips, but occasionally the directors may choose a field trip or direct their attention to excursions that relate to topics of study or interest.

      Our students enjoy being transported by limo bus all throughout the community. They visit local businesses and gain a behind the scene look at how they operate. They also engage in research studies at the Caledonia library, participate in a 10 week gross motor program in collaboration with GYMMIES in Caledonia (Gymnastic club), a 10 week skating program at the Caledonia arena following a CANSKATE progression, and a number of other activities like learning how to play tennis at the Caledonia courts, or baseball at its diamond.

      Our Elementary students also are leaders for our Casa field trips and join them on our bused outings.

      These GOING OUT experiences usually happen weekly from 830am-12:00pm and children return to school in time for lunch.

    Curriculum Details:

    The Elementary Programme
    – School-Age Children 6 to 12 Years of Age

    Growth in the Child Toward: 

    • The enjoyment of learning
    • Greater independence and problem solving
    • Greater skills in oral and written communication
    • Greater responsible group membership
    • A mature sense of justice and fairness
    • Respect for oneself, other people, and the planet
    • Understanding the patterns of the Universe

    Learning Environment

    • A diverse set of Montessori materials, activities, and experiences
    • A schedule that allows large blocks of uninterrupted learning time
    • Classroom atmosphere that encourages social interaction
    • Space for personal, small group, and whole class learning activities
    • Integrated curriculum including areas of exploration
    • Available library with resource books and multi-media equipment

    Components of Classroom

    • Aesthetically pleasing environment
    • Outdoor space to accommodate rigorous physical activity
    • Program Organization
    • Mixed-age groupings:  6 to 12 years 
    • Parental commitment to a three-year cycle of attendance
    • Admission policy of prior Montessori experience preferred
    • A record keeping system
    • Personal and group instruction
    • Regularly scheduled parent and child conferences
    • Public observation policy

    Programme Emphasis

    • To encourage intrinsic motivation, spontaneous activity, and self-education
    • To encourage cooperative learning through peer teaching and social interaction
    • To encourage growth in cultural experiences and knowledge
    • To encourage competencies through repetitive experiences
    • To foster the development of the imagination and creativity
    • To provide learning activities through physical and outdoor activity

    Teacher/Guide

    • Certified Montessori teachers at the elementary level
    • Continuing professional development
    • Observational skills to match students’ development needs with activities
    • Strategies to facilitate the unique and total growth of each individual
    • Leadership skills to foster a nurturing environment supportive of learning
    • A partnership developed with the family

    Administrative Support

    • Non-discriminatory admissions policy
    • Written educational policies and procedures
    • Adherence to provincial laws and health requirements
    • Current school affiliation with CCMA
    PRACTICAL LIFE

    Practical life, which was a separate area in the 3-6 classroom, is now integrated with the day-to-day care of the classroom and its inhabitants. Tasks may include preparation of snack and daily meals and watering of plants and care of animals. Elementary children dust the shelves, organize and straighten the materials, sweep and vacuum, and keep the classroom neat and clean.

    The language area includes a comprehensive spelling curriculum, word study (including antonyms, synonyms, homonyms, and compounds, as well as the parts of speech), creative writing, and research skills. Reading of every kind is highly encouraged, as children are introduced to poetry, folk tales, non-fiction, and classic literature. Children are also given many opportunities to read out loud – giving a presentation they have written or dramatizing the work of another author.

    LANGUAGE

    In elementary Montessori classroom, students begin to analyze more abstract concepts of language: the how, the why, and the from where? Montessori elementary students explore the history of language, written language, spoken language, literature and grammar, and syntax.

    Montessori students are introduced to the rules of human communication through word studies, work with the Montessori Grammar Boxes, as well as beginning logical sentence analysis. The goal in the Montessori elementary Language curriculum is not to teach grammar but to give a concrete representation and foster a love of the function of words. 

    MATH & GEOMETRY

    The math area begins with the Golden Bead material to teach beginning math concepts (place value, quantity/symbol association, and concrete addition, subtraction, multiplication, and division). The materials bring a “hands-on” quality to the classroom, with children learning through trial and error, self-discovery, and teaching from other children. The materials quickly move the child to an abstraction of math concepts, including problem-solving, fractions, borrowing and carrying, graphing, measurement, long division, and algebraic equations.

    Geometry is a fascinating area of Montessori. Actual wooden shapes are used to master the terminology of all of the plane figures and solids. Matching cards are used to introduce the types and positions of lines, types and positions of angles, and special characteristics of shapes. Experimentation with other materials leads children to their own discoveries of spatial relationships, including congruence, symmetry, and equivalency.

    CULTURAL SUBJECTS

    Botany and zoology encompass a wide field of biological study. Matching cards are used to learn the characteristics of many plants and animals, and charts aid in the classification of the plant and animal kingdoms. After this first knowledge is gained, children begin to research on their own, using their knowledge of specific plant and animal species.

    Geography and history include the study of civilizations and countries. Wooden puzzle maps of each continent are studied, with children learning the names, flags, animals, cultures, and geographic features of each country. History begins with the study of time, including clocks, calendars, and timelines. As various fundamental needs of people (like shelter, transportation, food, and clothing) are explored, the children research and chart changes in these needs over time and across cultures.

    ART

    On our ART DAYS our resource Art Teacher will turn our classroom into a professional art studio. Children engage in visual arts and are exposed to different media like watercolours, ink, stamping, clay – all while learning about the techniques and styles of art and encouraging creativity and expression.

    Children also focus on art history and identify famous artists and genres.  They will also have independent study projects to further explore artists of their choice.

    MUSIC

    RCMS music program includes the introduction of basic musical concepts including singing songs, listening activities, improvisation, playing rhythm instruments. Singing, developing an understanding of basic note values and the concept of pitch, are introduced. Students also learn about the families of instruments, and explore how sounds are made by playing percussion instruments.  |This year we will be introducing the recorder. The development of recorder skills is accompanied by an introduction to music notation.  Children will learn how to play together and create music using this instrument.

    FINDING THEIR PLACE IN THE WORLD

    Maria Montessori summed up the elementary classroom thusly: “The elementary child has reached a new level of development. Before he was interested in things: working with his hands, learning their names. Now he is interested mainly in the how and why…the problem of cause and effect.” It is now the job of the elementary teacher to provide the child with the materials and information to discover the interconnectedness of the universe.

    An elementary Montessori classroom is a warm community: a multi-age, stimulating environment with highly trained teachers and materials that invite exploration and research. Children learn to face challenges with confidence and begin to find their own place in the world around them.

    Moral Thinking and Reasoning

    As Maria Montessori and other psychological researches discovered, this is the stage of development where Children explore their moral and explore questions of philosophy and religion.  They often ask the “whys and hows?”.  At Riverside Christian Montessori School, children are taught that the Bible is the gateway to answer those questions.  Children are walked through the Bible from cover to cover to gain a cosmic view of its content, but also allow them to understand how Christ is apart of History, Geography, Language, Math, Biology and all academics.   Children are encouraged to connect with God through education, creation, art etc.