Chidlren’s Place Montessori may attend half day (8:45 – 11:30), extended half day (8:45 – 3:30) or full day (7:00 – 5:30) with the possibility of late pick up until 6:00.
The Half Day Program starts with the children entering the classroom with the children that arrive earlier already busily working. The children are greeted by their teachers and begin their day by choosing materials that they would like to work with. Throughout the morning, the teachers and assistants interact with them to present new challenges or re-present work that they may be struggling with. The children enjoy an uninterrupted work period which allows them to move from one work to another, satisfying their interests throughout the morning. At 11:00, the children move into enrichment Children attending classes which includes music, sign language, Spanish and movement, including yoga, exercises and rhythmic movement. At 1:30, their school day is over.
The Extended Day Program children enjoy the same morning activities as the half day children. At 11:30, however, they wash up and go to lunch in the multipurpose room. Lunch is followed by outside play, when possible, or inside activities in one of our two rooms allocated for play, the gym or the multipurpose room. At 1:00, the children prepare for their afternoon experience. The Kindergarten and older preschoolers go directly to class to enjoy a more academic experience specifically prepared for their ability and interest levels. The children that are not quite ready to stay awake all afternoon go to a Resting Room (the MPR) to listen to a few chapters from a book and enjoy quiet music until 2:00. They then have an afternoon snack and join the others already in class. Those children that require some sleep in the afternoon retire to the Nap Room (gym) where they listen to classical music in a relaxed, quiet atmosphere where they quickly drift off to sleep. They awaken no later than 3:00 and are given snack and go to class until 3:30 when their school day is over.
The Full Day Program begins at 7:00 in the MPR. The children that arrive early may eat their breakfasts brought from home, do puzzles, draw or play with the other materials available. At 8:15, the children move into the classroom to begin their class day. Their day continues the same as the extended day children until 3:30. The children enjoy music class (singing, rhythmic notation, dance) from 3:30l – 4:00. At 4:00, they have an opportunity to finish up their lunches, enjoy a snack brought from home specifically for the end of the day, or eat snack provided by the school. At 4:30, the children play either outside or in one of the two play rooms, the multipurpose room or gym. Near the end of the day, the children gather for a story or two before going home.
The beginning of the children’s kindergarten year finds them in the classroom all day. During the morning class, they continue to work independently with the materials in the classroom and with the teacher in small groups according to their academic levels. They work on more advanced materials that provide models for the younger ones. During the year, we promote independence and responsibility as they work toward their goals as well as the goals we set for them. They then can organize their days around the expectations the teachers set for them, moving from area to area as they check off their accomplishments. This is typically a very exciting aspect of their development. They feel privileged to be able to monitor themselves and it has been a very successful tool for most children.
In the afternoon, they come into the classroom at 1:00. The work done in the afternoon includes, spelling (memorization of words, word families and spelling using syllables), handwriting (focusing on
proper letter formation, placement and spacing), geography (land forms, continents, countries, states), math (continuing on with their level of operations and include money, time, measurement, fractions
and graphing), grammar (elements of a sentence) and introduction to the writing process (book reports, journals and a research project). The expectations for the kindergartener vary according to their abilities. We strive to encourage them to stretch themselves and monitor their progress. We again work with them in small, ability groups in the afternoon giving them extra individual attention to help them reach their full potential.
In addition to our academic program, the extensive practical living area gives the children opportunities to explore skills that build their confidence. Food preparation, sewing, weaving, knitting and other practical skills can begin hobbies that they will enjoy throughout their lives. Their position as the oldest ones in the classroom gives them opportunities to grow socially. They begin to show care and concern for younger ones while developing a feeling of competence in their abilities to problem solve. Regardless of where they begin the year, they will leave us fully prepared and confident in their skills.