Program and Subject Areas
Under the guidance of Montessori trained teachers, children are encouraged to explore the various areas of the classroom. Learning is an individual process, each child learns with his/her own style and pace. We encourage the natural curiosity and creativity of children, helping them gain independence, self-discipline, and good communication skills. At Tygervalley Montessori, we cherish and nurture every child’s joy and wonder of learning.
The program operates 5 days a week to provide consistency for the child. According to Dr. Maria Montessori, the ages from birth to six are the most critical for nurturing the child’s natural curiosity and for laying the foundation for all future development. The goal of the classroom should not be to fill the child with facts for a pre-selected course of study, but rather to cultivate the child’s natural desire to learn.
During the morning work cycle learners are presented new lessons and practice previous lessons. Learners are also encouraged to work outdoors and care for their vegetable garden. Both indoor and outdoor activities are always under adult supervision. For the older learners, the work cycle also includes the learners themselves setting the snack table, making their own snack and washing their dishes after.
The program at Tygervalley Montessori is rich with learning. Following is a description of the subject areas and materials used:
Exercises instill care for themselves, for others and for the environment. They foster the development of pride, responsibility and problem solving skills. The activities include many of the tasks children see as a part of the daily life in their home, such as washing clothes, doing the dishes, arranging flowers, etc. Activities also include spooning, tweezing, sweeping, dressing frames (for buttoning, snapping, zipping, tying, buckling), using scissors, pouring and folding. Being able to care for oneself is a big step towards independence. Teachers often hear the request, ‘Help me to do it by myself.’
Through these activities the children develop muscular coordination which enables focused movement and exploration of their surroundings. They learn to work at a task from beginning to end, develop their will (defined by Dr Maria Montessori as the intelligent direction of movement), their sense of discipline and their capacity for total concentration. These exercises enhance the development of order, the refinement of physical movement, as well as coordination.
Are manipulatives that assist the child in building cognitive skills and learn to order and classify impressions. The Montessori materials are scientifically designed to isolate a single concept that the child discovers through working with them. Length, color, shape, size, weight, texture, smell, and sound are all qualities that can be discerned by the pre-school child’s patient work with the varied materials.
Makes use of concrete, tangible materials that help the child gain a physical understanding of math concepts. Working with the number rods, symbol cards, spindle boxes, card counters, and the famous Montessori Golden Bead materials, the child sees and feels quantities and numbers and their relationships. This work provides the children with a solid foundation for traditional mathematical principles and provides a structured scope for abstract reasoning.
The Montessori environment provides rich and precise language development through the use of hands on manipulatives that encourage the development of early reading/writing skills.
Basic skills in writing and reading are developed through the use of sandpaper letters, alphabet cut-outs, the moveable alphabet and various presentations that allow children to link sounds with letter symbols effortlessly and to express their thoughts through writing.
Children learn about other cultures—past and present. This allows their innate respect and love for their environment to flourish and creates a base of unity with the global human family and its habitat. At Tyger Valley Montessori our children learn about evolution and religions of the world, with no religion receiving preference over another. Our learners develop an awareness and appreciation of the diversity of people and cultures.
Work with the globes and continent maps allow the Montessori child to explore the geography of his own country and other parts of the world. Flags of many nations are learned with accompanying anthems and stories of those lands. This creates a sense of appreciation for other peoples of the world.
Animal study, including range of habitat, adaptations to the environment, classification of herbivores and carnivores and endangerment of species, are all favorites with Montessori students. They also learn to care for classroom pets and observe various life cycles for e.g. hatching cocoons and watching tadpoles grow/develop..
With his classmates the three to six year old child experiments with seeds, growing them in and out of light, with and without water. He learns the parts of plants. He takes proper care of classroom plants and learns about various groups of plants. He finds order and the exciting organized evolutionary story of the plant kingdom, just as he does in the study of the animal world.
We want our students to be fascinated by the universe and to honestly enjoy the process of discovering its secrets and interrelationships. We want them to observe, analyze measure, classify, experiment, and predict and to do so with a sense of eager curiosity and wonder. Science activities provide children with opportunities to enhance their natural curiosity and interest in themselves and their environment (animals, plants, natural world). They learn about their body, work with magnets, prisms, float and sink work and follow seasonal changes in the natural world.
Youngsters learn songs, not only in their own language, but in that of other countries and cultures. He learns rhythms through games and exercises and gains listening experience and the joy of music through the instruments played and songs sung with his classmates.
Using shapes as a basis for drawing skills, the Montessori child learns to try his hand at creating works of art. Broad strokes in tempera, watercolor and crayon are refined as the child uses many different types of media in his exploration of art. He models clay, uses things from nature to create designs, and learns how to mix colors. As his young muscles develop, he tries more intricate moves with his brush or crayon, delighting not only himself, but the whole class. Prints of art masterpieces decorate the walls to encourage an appreciation of great artists.