My goal is to nurture the growth of the children in my Montessori classroom spiritually, mentally, and physically. It is my prayer that the children will have a wonderfully unforgettable experience.
During our worship times throughout the year we explore the acronym FROG—Fully Rely on God. We have field trips planned to creeks and ponds, frog art activities, and exciting books to read about frogs, along with many frog activities involving Bible, math, and language. I pray the children they will become better acquainted with God and begin to understand just how much He loves them.
When children are 3 to 6 years old, learning is active and children go through sensitive periods where they have prime-times to learn given tasks. These tasks while easy to learn during the sensitive period will become increasingly harder if delayed. When the environment is properly prepared the child will cooperate, be agreeable, start working on his or her own, and be capable of long periods of work. A carefully prepared environment sets limits naturally and enhances the child’s ability to learn—for life.
Misbehaving is usually because the child is not really interested in his/her work. My job is not to criticize or threaten but to observe the child closely and invite him/her to engage in some work that would more closely match his/her maturation level. When children become absorbed in developmentally appropriate work, discipline is rarely a problem.
Real discipline is not something that is imposed on children from an outside source by threats or rewards but comes from inside themselves. Children who are self-disciplined experience the joy of freedom and independence. Although Montessori teachers value children’s independence and avoid imposing their own expectations or even praising and criticizing them; this is true only about intellectual work. Moral conduct is entirely different. Children are not allowed to abuse the material or their classmates.
To enhance children's ability to concentrate and learn to love nature and the Creator we have opened an outdoor classroom. The children will be invited to garden, work at the woodworking bench, and explore the natural world right outside our classroom doors on a regular basis.
"True education means more than the pursual of a certain course of study. It means more than a preparation for the life that now is. It has to do with the whole period of existence possible to man. It is the harmonious development of the physical, the mental, and the spiritual powers. It prepares the student for the joy of service in this world and for the higher joy of wider service in the world to come." (Ellen White, Education)
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