Southwood Learning Center - About the Montessori MethodAbout the Montessori Method

The Montessori Method is an internationally recognized curriculum that has been practiced for more than 100 years. The philosophy encourages children to develop respect for themselves, for others and for the environment.

It is unique in allowing children to work at their own pace, in their interest areas. The philosophy suggests that children will be drawn to particular lessons based on “critical periods” (optimum times of learning). By choosing the lesson, it allows them to focus and work more diligently. Along with the traditional three “R’s” (reading, writing, and arithmetic) children also work on geography, science, practical life (daily living skills) and sensorial (activities that incorporate the five senses in order to help the child become more attuned to their environment). Children are presented with lessons that are often not typically found in a pre-school setting like land masses, parts of speech, geometric solids and an extensive array of more.

Lessons are presented using concrete materials to teach abstract ideas, e.g. using beads to teach higher numbers. Children can visually see one bead, then a row of connected 10 beads, a row of 100 beads and finally a cube of connected 1000 beads. This visually allows them to see how much larger 1000 is compared to 10 or how many 10’s beads make up 100. Lessons also incorporate multiple senses, e.g. when learning phonics, children learn using sandpaper letters, allowing them to feel the letter sensorial rather than just hear the sound, thereby understanding at multiple levels. Lessons start off at the very basic and then can have “extensions” in order to increase difficulty.

The classroom is made up of children 3-6 (including kindergarteners). Mixed age groups reflect the “real world.” Older children are encouraged to act as mentors to the younger ones and younger children are motivated by their more “advanced” peers, not just academically but socially also. Lessons are presented to the group at large, as well as individually. The child “absorbs” what is relative to them. If the class is working on a geography lesson, the teacher may present a continent to the class, but work individually with certain children on the countries that make up that continent, etc. Through this, children have the opportunity to learn extensively through an individualized curriculum and be fully prepared academically, emotionally, and socially for kindergarten and/or first grade.

Contact us today and see what a difference a Montessori School can make for your child.