Preschool

Pacific Rim Montessori Academy adheres to the philosophy formulated by the scientist and philosopher Dr. Maria Montessori which has a mixed age classroom at its very core. Children aged 2 ½ – 6 share the same environment because Maria Montessori saw immense benefits of having mixed age groups together. Providing an environment where the younger and older children can collaborate helps them achieve their true potential. The environment is positive and supportive, much learning occurs as a natural product of the younger children observing the older ones and the older ones feeling a sense of responsibility for their younger peers. Children are in this ‘primary class’ for 2 years of preschool and their KG year.

Basic to the Montessori philosophy is the fact that children have the inherent urge to learn and to master all that is in  the  environment  around  them. Rather than allow this spontaneous urge to become dissipated through lack of direction Maria Montessori designed ‘the prepared environment’.

“We must help the child to act for himself, will for himself, think for himself;
this is the art of those who aspire to serve the spirit.”

The children’s innate passion for learning is encouraged by giving them opportunities to engage in spontaneous, purposeful activities  with  the  guidance  of  a  trained  adult. Through their work, the children develop concentration and joyful self-discipline. Within a framework of order, according to their individual capabilities, the children progress at their own pace and rhythm. The prepared environment allows them to take responsibility for their own education, giving them the opportunity to become human beings able to function independently and hence interdependently.

 

Practical Life | Sensorial | Language | Cultural Extensions | Mathematics | Specialist Teachers

Children  of  the  age  of  2 ½   – 6  years  possess  what  Dr. Montessori  called  the Absorbent Mind. This type of mind has the unique and transitory ability to absorb all aspects physical, mental, spiritual of the environment, without effort or fatigue. As an aid to the child’s self-construction, individual work is encouraged. The following areas of activity cultivate the children’s ability to express themselves and think with clarity.

The  role  of  a  Montessori  teacher is that of  an  observer  whose ultimate goal is to intervene less and less as the child develops. The teacher creates an atmosphere  of calm, order and joy in the classroom and is there to help and encourage the children in all their efforts, allowing them to develop self-confidence and inner discipline. With the younger students at each level, the teacher is more active,  demonstrating  the use of materials  and  presenting  activities  based  on  an  assessment  of   the  child’s requirements. Knowing how to observe constructively,  when  and  how  much  to intervene, is one of the most important talents the Montessori teacher acquires during a rigorous course of training at AMI training centres throughout the world.


Practical Life
Practical  Life  exercises  instill  care  for themselves, for others, and for the environment. The activities include many of the tasks children see  as  part  of  the  daily  life  in  their  home, washing and ironing, doing the dishes, arranging flowers,  etc.  Elements  of  human  civility  are introduced  with  the  exercises  of  grace  and courtesy.  Through  these  and  other  activities, children develop muscular coordination, enabling movement  and  the  exploration  of   their surroundings. They learn to work at a task from beginning to end, and develop their will (defined by Dr. Montessori as the intelligent direction of movement), their self-discipline and their capacity for total concentration.

 

 

 


Sensorial
Sensorial Materials  are tools for development. Children build cognitive efficacy,  and  learn  to order and classify impressions. They do this by touching,  seeing,  smelling,  tasting,  listening, and  exploring  the  physical  properties of their environment through the mediation of specially- designed materials.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Language
Language is vital to human existence. The Montessori environment provides rich and precise language. Language is explored phonetically in a Montessori classroom. When   the  children  come  into  the classroom at around three years of age, they are given the opportunity to enrich the language that they have acquired in their small lifetime, in the simplest way possible. They are  then able to  use  it intelligently with precision and beauty, becoming aware of its properties not by being taught, but by being allowed to discover and explore these properties themselves.  If  not  pressured, they will learn to write, and as a natural consequence to read, never remembering the day they could not write or read in the same way that they do not remember that once upon a time they could not walk.

 

 

 

 


Cultural Extensions
Geography, History, Biology, Botany, Zoology, Art and  Music  are  presented  as  extensions  of  the sensorial and language activities. Children learn about other cultures past and present, and this allows their innate  respect  and  love  for  their  environment  to flourish, creating a sense of solidarity with the global human family and its habitat.

 

 

 

 

 


Mathematics
The Mathematics Materials help the child learn   and   understand   mathematical concepts by working with concrete materials thus leading the child to the abstract. The Montessori materials provide the child with a sensorial and visual impression of numbers 1 – 10 leading on to the decimal system and the millions. The materials lay the basis for algebra and geometry.

 

 

 

 


Individual Education Plans & Specialist Teachers

Flexibility of procedure is the rule not the exception in Montessori. The child is always more important than pre-established routines, as such work is planned for each individual child based on his age, interests and ability, in Montessori philosophy this is known as following the child. Our program is committed to providing the child with opportunities to learn at his own pace The Montessori program is committed to supporting the spontaneous unfolding of the child. In keeping with this, the subject specialist in the Montessori classroom is avoided as much as possible. Too many adults in the environment make the child too dependent. The Montessori teacher must be a creative and flexible part of the child’s learning environment.