Areas of Development
From the first plane of development, which Dr. Montessori called “The Absorbent Mind,” children grow into a second plane of development known as “The Reasoning Mind.”
The Second Plane: The Reasoning Mind, Ages 6-12
This is the age of imagination; the Absorbent Mind is no more. Children now feel the need to do the work, actively searching for information and bringing that information together into a comprehensive understanding. “Imagination” is, thus, not limited to inventing creative stories, for instance, but allows a child to “see” the stories told. In the story of the formation of the universe, for example, the child can “see” the formation of stars, the formation of the earth, the volcanos forming earth, the development of life on earth, the early life in the Paleozoic sea, the coming of humans to Earth, the development of language, etc.
Montessori curriculum and BC curriculum are presented in small groups. Prepared materials allow individual practice. Children show their understanding of concepts by sharing their understanding, using art, drama or another method of recording. For children in this plane of development, our Montessori elementary program provides a beautiful prepared environment, rich in materials that continue to give hands-on experience in all areas of the curriculum:
Language: Reading, Writing, Listening, Speaking
Children enter kindergarten being read to by an older partner, enjoying books, sharing jokes and pictures, tracking words and using known sounds to unlock words. Phonetic skills are used to record stories about his/her daily life, stories are reread, key words are learned and memorized and progress is made to different levels of reading.
As reading and writing skills develop with specific lessons and daily practice with writing and reading, children progress, are happy to read the next levels of books and our happy with their progress in ability to write more, to read it back and to draw beautiful pictures about happenings in their lives.
- Conventional spelling is noted as a child becomes more proficient at writing phonetically and also is reading fluently. Word books (dictionaries) with commonly used words are used to correct spelling gently.
- Listening and speaking appropriately are practised. Active listening and appropriate responses are consciously practised.
- Children are taught how to deal with and speak to bullying, how to ask for help and how to help others.
Mathematics: The Big Picture of Numbers, Then the Parts
- Skills from preschool are further developed, with the aim to have children “love” math.
- Using 100s boards, building four-digit numbers with golden bead materials, adding, subtracting.
- Chains, counting, placing numbers to 1,000.
- Using specifically developed materials to build numbers beyond thousands to 1,000,000.
- Using materials developed to understand fractions, to add and subtract fractions, make equivalent fractions, change to percents, decimals.
- Materials developed to understand and work with decimals, place value, adding, subtracting, multiplying, dividing.