Goals: Physical Development
- Developing a body whose movements are mastered and controlled;
- Developing the fine coordination necessary for writing and manipulation of materials;
- Learning sports and games which can be enjoyed into adulthood;
Goals: Emotional Development
- An awareness of one’s own feelings;
- Sensitivity to and consideration for the feelings of others;
- Developing a good self-image;
Goals: Intellectual Development
- The mastery of skills (such as reading, writing, etc.) in order to be able to pursue knowledge;
- An understanding of how to find information and use various media;
- To become a learner who can learn with a minimum of assistance from an adult;
Goals: Knowledge Development
- A sense of stewardship of the earth and all life;
- An understanding of the evolution of life;
- An understanding that all people have the same basic needs;
- An appreciation for the variety of ways in which needs are met;
- An awareness of the integration and interdependence of humankind and nature;
- An awareness of the interdependence of people and nations, with a desire for cooperation and peace.
Language is an important part of the entire Montessori curriculum. Our presentations in language guide the children toward a conscious awareness of language, for its own interest’s sake, and as a means to use language more effectively. There is a great variety of lessons in word study, penmanship, grammar, punctuation, and capitalization. Much of the child’s experience in reading and writing comes through work in other areas of the curriculum, such as geography, history, botany, etc.
Because children have different learning styles, they are provided with different means for learning to read within the environment. In this way, the children will be able to select the components of reading which fit their learning style and put them together in the way that is best for them.
World Leaner School is unique in having a specially-trained Reading Guide, who works with children who need extra guidance in reading.
Manipulation of concrete and symbolic materials with built-in error control develops sound mathematical skills and guides the children from the concrete toward the abstract.
As in other parts of the Montessori curriculum, experience with a material comes first, then the spoken language or naming. This is followed by the symbolic representation or written symbol. So, the sequence is: the material, related language, and then its symbolic representation, and all along the way there is the essential recognition of the associations among these various features.
Much like the Reading Guide, WLS’s Math Guide supports the work of children needing additional tutorial options to master math skills.
Geometry in Montessori follows the historical development of the subject. Geometry is experienced sensorially through manipulation of plane and solid geometric figures. These materials inspire creative activity that involves two and three-dimensional construction of various forms, artistic drawings, and ornamentation.
Overview: Social Studies and Science
Social studies and science at the elementary level are integrated in the classroom as they are in life. Therefore, there are no clear distinctions among the various areas that are included in this section. These two classes are two of the main four subjects taught at the middle school level. Even when taught separately, every effort is made to integrate all subject areas.
Montessori biology is structured in such a way as to guide the children toward a means of classification - so that they can structure and relate the facts of biology. The ultimate goal is an ecological view of life and a feeling of responsibility for the environment. The child will see that each individual life on earth is selfish in its own way, but also each serves the good of the whole in its own way. Montessori calls this the “Cosmic Plan.”
Montessori history follows the development of the solar system, life on earth, the development of humankind, early civilizations, and recorded history. The child sees the long labor of humankind needed to accomplish all that is enjoyed here today.
The study of geography is designed to show how the physical configurations of the earth contribute to history. The study of geography and physical geography is the basis for the study of economic geography - which shows the interdependence of all people.
The first science experiments are designed to give the child basic knowledge which will make possible the understanding of the development of the solar system, the earth and its configurations, life on earth, and the needs of plants and animals.
Overview: Foreign Language
The Montessori teachers integrate Spanish into the lower elementary curriculum. The classrooms have invested in a Spanish Montessori materials that mimic the English Montessori materials and are used to accentuate language skills.
In the Montessori class, the adult aids the children in the development of skills in order that they may creatively express themselves through various media. In addition to art expression for its own sake, art is an integrating factor in the rest of the curriculum. The child may utilize art in such ways as geometrical drawings, geographical maps, mathematical graphing, or illustrations for history, botany, zoology, social studies, geology, geography, etc.
Our music program includes singing, the playing of instruments, rhythm, notation, composition, music theory, and music appreciation.
We make a special effort to provide choices in music for students at all levels.
Singing provides opportunities for understanding scales, expression of feelings, and understanding other cultures. Singing provides children with a repertoire of melodies that they can use in the production and analysis of music.
The emotion expressed by a piece of music such as a folk song, a symphony, or a marching tune can be absorbed, felt, and recognized by children. This in turn may lead to quiet listening and contemplation, to expression of the feeling in writing or in art, to the examining of qualities and characteristics of different musical instruments, or to the understanding of an era or a group of people through the music which they produced. This may lead to the study of style and musical form. The opportunities for expansion are limitless. The World Learner School offers other musical opportunities that vary from year to year, either during or after school, such as private instrument lessons, band, jazz band, rock band, and choir.
Overview: Physical Education
The World Learner School utilizes its easy access to the outdoors, as well as the services of the Chaska Community Center as well as other local facilities for physical fitness, swimming and other activities. The children also have daily recess, held outdoors whenever possible.
Biological studies relating to physical education include human anatomy, physiology and nutrition. Practical life areas such as carpentry, sewing, weaving, etc. and movement activities in the music area also relate. We focus on the development of skills that can be used in later life is the emphasis, along with the challenge of competing with oneself rather than competing with others.
The Montessori Elementary and Middle School programs are based on developmental psychology first put forward by Maria Montessori. This type of learning takes place in a multi-aged classroom that offers the opportunity for children to remain with the same teacher for multiple years. This establishes intimate contact among the children, the teacher and the work. It permits a variety of approaches, using dynamic, colorful, concrete manipulatives from which abstract concepts are drawn. Materials are used throughout the curriculum, in math, language, geometry, geography, history, biology, art, music and natural sciences.
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