Photo: Jonathan Wolfe - The Fractal Foundation

Jonathan Wolfe, Executive Director of the Fractal Foundation, attended Escuela del Sol in the early 1970s, at which time his… more >

 

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Racks and Tubes
This division material forms the bridge to abstraction for the decimal system exercise of division. With this material the child performs long division with dividends up to the millions and divisors from 1 to 4 digits.

 

 

Reptile studies in the Primary classroom

 

 

 

The Knobbed Cylinders

This material helps children to develop a visual perception of depth and dimension as well as
a greater knowledge of height, length, width, and depth. Grasping the cylinders helps with fine motor skills and develops writing readiness as the fingers and thumb form the pencil grip.

 

 

 

 

"Our care of the child should be governed, not by the desire to make him learn things, but by the endeavor always to keep burning within him that light which is called intelligence."      -Maria Montessori

 

 

 

The Montessori method uses specially designed materials that serve the curriculum and the developing skills of our students.

Great Stories

In the Montessori Elementary, the Great Stories are the 5 stories that span the curriculum at a glance. Key lessons are taught as a result of the stories, emphasizing fundamental parts of each story that are found in all subject areas. For example: in geography, a key lesson is the introduction of the states of matter as being gas, liquid and solid. Then we have a series of lessons that follow-up from this key lesson, giving the child many work options to explore the concept. one of the Great Stories is "The Coming of the Universe". This story provides context and shows relationships between states of matter, physical sciences, earth sciences, astronomy and more. Key lessons in each of these areas follow over the course of the year. With the telling of the story the children realize their own picture of how all these lessons fit together. This enables them to more rapidly master and apply each concept to the next.

Other stories provide context for critical (and required) areas of study: from topics like math (multiplication, division, squaring, cubing, etc.) and language (parts of speech, sentence structure, creative writing, etc.) to science (biology, zoology, chemistry, physics).



Practical Life Exercises

In the Practical Life area of the Primary and Toddler classrooms, children develop fine motor skills and concentration through a variety of spooning, pouring, sorting, sewing, food preparation and art activities. It is in this area that the lessons of grace and courtesy are practiced and where good work habits are developed. Dr. Montessori called children's focus upon an activity "work", not because it was tough or drudgery, but because the child was purposefully devoting their attention to a task at hand, to give it honor.



Sensorial Materials

The Sensorial Materials sharpen the senses and enable children to understand their environment through many sensory interactions and experiences. Each of the Sensorial Materials isolates one defining quality such as color, weight, shape, texture, size, smell, sound, etc. The purpose of these materials is to provide a concrete, sensorial impression and understanding for abstract concepts. Many of the sensorial exercises are a preparation for academic learning. The geometric solids, for example, help make the child aware of various shapes and sizes while introducing the vocabulary used for geometric shapes: cube, sphere, cone, cylinder, prism, pyramid.



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