Primary Classroom (Ages 3-6 years)
Children in Primary classrooms are typically very active, inquisitive, and learn best by being active or “doing”. They often enjoy creating their own things and enjoy discovering new concepts. As with the wobblers and toddlers, classroom routines and environment are key factors in the design of the Primary Classroom. Work times are a substantial part of the day. The structured environment is designed so that children can naturally become disciplined and active participants in their daily work. Through the introduction of new materials, guidance from teachers, stimulation of the mind and imagination, children will employ free choice lesson work cycles as provided by the schedule.
The Montessori philosophy employs 4 broad curriculum areas which include: Practical Life, Sensorial, Mathematics, and Language. It also encompasses wide range of other cognitive, cultural disciplines. These are the same areas mentioned in the wobbler and toddler classes and are recurring across all age groups. Previously taught skills are continually used, extended, and built upon through the experiences provided by the primary curriculum. The most notable difference between these areas across different age groups resides in the types of skills, tasks and material introduced and expected for mastery within each area. Some specific skills from each of these areas specifically emphasized within the primary classrooms include:
- practical life (personal care, care of environment, plants, animals, and classroom, food preparation, grace and courtesy, fine/gross motor skills, etc.)
- sensorial (development of the five senses, exploration with geometric shapes, preparation for the decimal system)
- mathematics (addition, subtraction, concepts of multiplication and division, patterns, numeration, money, fractions, quantities, etc.)
- language development (writing, pre-reading, reading, phonics, vocabulary development, word building, alphabet, etc.)
- other cognitive and cultural areas that often include biology, zoology, botany, history, grace and courtesy, geography, physical science, art, other cultures, and music, to name a few.
Children in these rooms will go outside every day, for a total of 90 minutes per day. The primary playground is spacious and has been carefully designed to allow for safe, stimulating, and varied outdoor activities including swings, bikes, climbing structures, gardens and plenty of grass!