We at Christchurch Montessori believe that the children are at their happiest when they are busily involved in process. Children are natural learners, who when left to follow their own instincts will want to constantly explore the world. The child is given a balance between freedom and structure to use the activities without unnecessary interference so he/she develops to his/her full potential and at his/her own pace.
“There is in the child a special kind of sensitivity which leads him to absorb everything about him and it is this work of observing and absorbing that alone enables him to adapt himself to life” Dr Maria Montessori from the Absorbent Mind.
The Montessori classrooms provide a prepared environment where children are free to respond to their natural tendency to work, they self-access activities and materials in response to their own interests. The Montessori method goes hand in glove with the early years foundation stage.
The practical life area provides real life experiences. The activities are purposeful and have six basic goals, to assist concentration, independence, fine and gross motor skills, a sense of order, self-esteem and left to right dexterity.
Dressing frames introduce skills for buttoning, Velcro, zipping, poppers lacing and hooks.
Other activities include hand washing and baby doll washing.
Caring for the environment
Exercises for pouring, spooning, sweeping, clothes folding and dish washing
Grace and courtesy
Include exercises for walking, sitting, greeting others, manners and following instructions.
The exercises are changed at regular intervals to adjust to the interest of each individual child and different topics.
Maria Montessori believed that children learn through the different senses. During the age from three years to six years children develop these senses and there attention is directed towards their environment. By providing sensorial activities specially designed to develop discrimination, order, and to broaden and refine these senses.
The difference in dimension, width, length and size can be found in the pink tower, board stairs, knobbed and knobbless cylinders other visual senses enhanced by colour tablets geometric cabinet and constructive triangles
The sense of touch, touch tablets and recognition of a variety touch fabrics and other natural products.
Sound cylinders (loud to soft) and bells provide training for the auditory sense
Each of the exercises has an inbuilt control of error so the child is able to see any error made and can independently make his/her own correction. Encouraging them to practice and improve independently.
Learning mathematical concepts in a Montessori classroom begins concretely and progresses towards the abstract. Each exercise is presented simple to complex. Process is taught first and facts come later. Each child develops coordination; concentration and independence when experiencing the materials available. These materials Introduce numbers one through to ten, teach counting and value of quantity, using the number rods, sandpaper numbers, cards, spindle boxes, cards and counters, the short bead stairs. Along with additional exercises will reinforce number bonds and sequencing of numbers.
Additional materials are available to introduced higher maths at the child’s correct stage of development and at his/her own pace. These include counting and quantity from units, to tens, hundreds and thousands, simple addition and subtraction, simple fractions, geometric shapes and solids and constructive triangles.
Our environment is deigned in such a way that all activities naturally gear themselves to development of skills for oral, written language and reading. Children have the freedom to converse between children and their peers and children and adults. Precise names are used on apparatus and objects, vocabulary classification and matching exercises develop visual perception, enrich vocabulary, developing the left to right movement in preparation for reading. A large selection of books is available for the children to explore as well as story books at reading times.
Phonetic sounds are introduced to the children through sand paper letters and a three period lesson. (This is, show me, and tell me). This provides a visual and tactile experience. The focus is on lower case letters and the sound that they represent. Only 3 sounds are taught at any one time so as not to overload the child’s progress. Capital letters come later in the programme along with blends and diagraphs.
A selection of colour coded boxes, provide the experiences of building first 3 letter words.
One box for each vowel sound, in each box is a small object or picture and the written word. Then using the LMA (large movable alphabet) children form the word to match the object.
As the child becomes confident using these first set of boxes additional boxes for four letter words to plurals are made available.
As the child’s confidence builds small word cards and simple three letter word books are introduced. Wordless books are made available to encourage self-story telling using pictures as a prompt for the story.
Cultural covers a range of different topics, geography, science, botany, zoology and history. Art and music are also included as part of this area
Daily group times introduce these areas.
Introducing topics about land, air, water, maps, continents, people including food and music from different countries.
Introducing different mini beasts and large animals and their habitats
Introducing the four seasons, colour changes, the five senses, layers of the earth, volcanoes and simple science experiments.
Introducing seeds, parts of plants, kinds of trees and leaves, herbs and spices and what plants give us.
The Toddler Room provides a secure base from which 2 year old's can explore. The room is large with lots of space for the children to develop their mobility and explore the environment around them, knowing their key person is never too far away.
During your child’s day at nursery we supply snacks at morning break, this includes fruit, water and milk. At lunchtime, parents can provide a health packed lunch or opt to purchase a hot cooked lunch at an additional cost.
Can we please ask that in the warmer weather you could supply a sun hat and sun cream and in the winter a warm coat, hat, gloves and Wellingtons.
Garden Area: An area where children are encouraged to take controlled risks and explore. There is also a “Mud Kitchen” for children to use their imaginations to explore and investigate what mud can do using various tools and water. There is also some climbing apparatus, balancing beams and role play activities.
We provide an extensive range of developmentally appropriate equipment which is carefully chosen in order to further children’s development in all areas of learning.
We enhance the Framework of the Early Years Foundation Stage buy embracing the principle that young children learn through play and experimenting, a philosophy to which we are absolutely committed.
THE EARLY YEARS FOUNDATION STAGE  is the curriculum that covers both the WELFARE and LEARNING AND DEVELOPMENT of young children from Birth to the end of their first year in School.
THE EYFS FRAMEWORK HAS RECENTLY BEEN REVISED and now comprises of:
3 Prime Areas of Learning:
4 Specific Areas of Learning:
Totalling 7 AREAS OF LEARNING.
Christchurch Montessori provides a wealth of activities and experiences which cover all areas of learning.
We liaise closely with parents and take note of each child's interests, progress and development. To ensure that we spend as much time as possible working, playing and interacting with the children, we minimise the time we spend on paperwork to that which impacts directly on our provision for the child and the information that we share with the parents.
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