3 to 6 Years Community
The 3-6 environment is a mixed-age community that benefits both the older and younger members. A deep sense of caring and respect for one another and the environment is fostered and nurtured as children help each other, care for their classroom, and work together to solve problems. Grace and courtesy are important components of the environment. The maximum enrollment is 30 learners.
The environment is filled with furniture and equipment that fit the size of the child, enabling the children to be self-sufficient in as many tasks as possible. It also nurtures children’s intrinsic motivation by matching their natural enthusiasm for learning with opportunities for the fulfillment of their needs and interests.
Each of our Montessori teachers prepare the environment with materials so beautiful that they “call to the child” to come and touch. These materials, arranged in order on shelves, ARE the curriculum through which the child progresses to learn. So often the child tells us, “Let me do it for myself.” The materials in our environments give the child the tools and then the freedom to empower that motive.
In our highly ordered, prepared environment each task presented to the child offers one new isolated difficulty for the child to master. These tasks build upon one another to lead the child toward independence and confidence. The morning work cycle allows the child an uninterrupted period for self-directed concentration. The child may request a new lesson, return to practice lessons already presented, and choose their own snack time within that work cycle. Over time the child progresses toward a well-balanced use of self directed time, a work ethic, a state that Dr Maria Montessori referred to as “Normalization”.
Children in the 3-6 environment engage in tasks that:
- Stimulate language development
- Allow for independence
- Encourage the child to care for themselves and the environment
- Provide sensory experiences
- Develop the creative self
- Build fine and gross motor skills, self-control, and coordination
- Encourage the exploration of the surrounding world
- Model positive social interactions
- Emphasis is placed on process, not product and cooperation, not competition