Laying the Montessori Foundation
The three, four, and five-year-olds arriving at Ancona each morning enter a carefully crafted Montessori learning environment where they will grow academically, socially, and individually. The ample, open spaces of the child-centered early childhood classrooms:
- invite children to follow their innate desire to learn with intriguing materials that stretch their imaginations
- offer appropriate challenges and
- engage them, individually or in small groups, in sustained exploration.
Long uninterrupted blocks of time allow children the freedom to choose activities, to establish a community of learners with their peers, and to benefit from the direction and guidance of teachers and assistants who design, document, and sustain the learning process. More on Montessori from the American Montessori Society >
Montessori method, developed by Dr. Maria Montessori, is a child-centered educational approach that supports the natural development of children. Montessori views the child as one who is naturally eager for knowledge and capable of initiating learning in a supportive, thoughtfully prepared learning environment. It is an approach that values the human spirit and the development of the whole child—physical, social, emotional, cognitive.
Ancona adheres to Maria Montessori’s belief that children are naturally motivated, active learners who build their own understandings of the world as they interact with their environment. Our classrooms encourage children’s active explorations of carefully prepared materials and empowers children through choice and freedom to take charge of their own learning.
Over the years, Ancona’s Montessori-inspired program has evolved, adding the insights and understandings of constructivism—that children learn by constructing meaning from their lived experiences—and of progressivism—that an education for a democratic society must be child-centered, that is, led by the child’s interests, and grounded in authentic experiences–to the Montessori foundation.
The child-centered environment – developing young learners
In the course of their Early Childhood years, many Ancona students become readers and writers, while others lay the foundation for reading and writing through multi-sensory activities in a setting saturated with oral and written language. Science and social studies activities are integrated throughout the day.
Concrete materials allow Early Childhood students to construct their understanding of math concepts and internalize a sense of order and number. Group problem solving within real-world contexts promotes rich math conversations as well as meaningful communication through words and images.
Building social skills through community
The multi-age classroom is a catalyst for the development of social skills that will last a lifetime. When students of different ages and levels of experience interact, everyone benefits – the youngest can look to their older peers for guidance, and the older students can learn by leading.
Our Preschool and Kindergarten day
Our Early Childhood program consists of multi-age classrooms where three, four, and five year olds participate in a Montessori combined program. After the morning program, the three and four year olds (Preschool) either head for home or continue their day of Montessori enrichment. The afternoon for three and four year olds included lunch (prepared at home), recess, naps and a Montessori work period.Five year olds (Kindergarten) continue their day with more discipline specific academic work in math, reading and writing. They also travel to other classrooms to learn Spanish and participate in Library, Music and P.E. These work periods prepare them for the demands of the elementary program.
Supporting young learners
Ancona teachers along with our experienced Student Support Team work collaboratively to ensure that young learners are developing physically, emotionally and cognitively. Knowing that every child’s development is individual and complex, our Montessori curriculum is designed to challenge students according to their personal development. Informal screenings and observations are conducted as early as 3 to inform teachers when supports are needed. Learn more about our Student Support Team here.
MONTESSORI PROGRAM CHOICES
8:05 a.m. – 12:00 p.m.
7:15 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. (Half Day plus Preprimary Before School)