Our children are free to move and work within an atmosphere of order, made possible by gentle rules and absorbing didactic (learning) materials.
The didactic materials and rhythmic cycles of activity in our Montessori environments provide a flexible structure and ‘organization of work’ enabling children to occupy themselves constructively in relative freedom. Children can immerse themselves in the materials and exercises that furnish the ‘motive of activity’ as Dr Maria Montessori termed their allure. The gentle rules protect each child's work from the disruption of other children, and the freedom for children to work with activities for as long as each child wants, enables the children to concentrate until they are fully satisfied.
In our Montessori environments, emphasis is on the intrinsic reward of self-development rather than on rewards, stickers, prizes and punishments. A child is free to help another, if invited by that child. The multi-age range in a class offers wider opportunities for learning; older and more able children can directly help the younger, or the latter may learn simply by watching their older classmates. Our Montessori children admire one another's work. They share responsibility for ‘school keeping’ tasks and can work in large or small groups as circumstances dictate.
The importance of the youngest, ‘formative’ years for absorbing language is recognised, acknowledged and nurtured through natural conversations, stories, songs, rhymes and poetry.
We are very alert to the children’s ‘sensitive periods’ for pre-reading and writing. There are joyful activities and materials designed to inspire, nurture and improve skills in listening, speaking, reading and writing.
Our children exercise their senses of touch, vision, hearing, taste and smell, and special provision is made to ensure the healthy vestibular and proprioceptive development of all children.
Choosing from a large selection of readily available materials enables our children to learn intuitively the underpinning concepts of speech, music, colour, art, mathematics, language, botany, zoology, physics, astronomy, geography and history. Their earliest explorations enable them to move forward smoothly to more complex and abstract exercises after sufficient practice and preparation.
Children at MEfA Montessori are master learners and their development is gently and fully nurtured in this critical stage of their development. They are given every opportunity to experiment, explore and innovate using activities of everyday practical life, where the development of their movement and kinesthetic intelligence prepare the cornerstones of their future education.
Children’s sensorial education, which materialises abstraction and prepares children for their logical mathematics intelligence and spatial intelligence, is nurtured through repeated and creative use of the instantly recognizable Montessori pink tower, red rods, broad stair, knobbed cylinders and, fabulously, the insets for design.
Finally, effective presentations for language, bilingual expression, music, creative arts, arithmetic and social studies are presented individually and with versatility, appealing to each child's moments of interest - just when the ‘sensitive periods’, i.e. the summit of self-motivated moment, for each aspect of learning - is revealed by the child.