Here's a look at the students we guide:

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Toddlers (Ages 1-3)

We have one toddler classroom for children ages 1-3.  This part of the school is a tuition-based public program.  The SMCS Toddler program consists of 10 toddlers and two co-teachers.  We accept children who are 1-year-old with the ability to walk.  The Toddler program curriculum includes: social/ emotional development, language acquisition, early literacy skills, cognitive development, care of self and of the environment, gross and fine motor skills, arts and science.  The teachers prepare the environment with appropriate works for each child, making sure to provide work that is challenging and rewarding for the child. The daily routine is part of the work for the toddlers.  The children choose the "work" that they would like to do and the teachers help guide the children in how to use the material, and even how they might want to manipulate the material in a new and creative way.  When a child completes their work with a material, the teachers guide them in putting the works away before beginning a new activity.  During meal times, the children are shown and guided through a process of getting ready to eat, setting up their meal, using their manners to share a meal together and cleaning up when finished.  Learning step by step processes at this age helps the child to develop a sense of order, which they will carry with them for a lifetime.  Several activities that are available daily also help them learn a process which they will take great pride in completing independently over time.  Helping children learn to be around each other socially is one of the major components of the toddler program.  The class is full of joyful activity and the teachers pay close attention to the dynamics of the group, slipping in only when the children need help resolving issues or in choosing kind words during situations that may be causing frustration for the young child. The toddler classroom is a bright and happy spot that we love having as part of our SMCS program. Teachers: Stephanie Leddington & Brianna Myers

 

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CHILDREN'S House Classroom: Preschool (Ages 3-6)

We have one classroom serving children in preschool and Kindergarten.  The preschool children are part of the tuition-based public program, and the Kindergartners are part of the state-funded public Charter school.  The SMCS Montessori Children's House, organized to complement the natural development of children aged 3-6, is a structured, peaceful environment encouraging independence, concentration, order, coordination and the joy for learning.  Each child's abilities and interests are nurtured and respected through the guidance of trained Montessori teachers; children are encouraged to move through our Montessori curriculum at their own pace in uninterrupted work cycles.   Self-correcting Montessori lessons and multi-sensory materials move from concrete to abstract, and our students are provided extensive activities in Practical Life, Peace Education, Language, Sensorial, Math, Geography/ Cultural and Science.  Older children are role models for younger while younger children teach older friends to be mentors and leaders.  Within a supportive, fun community of younger and older, our authentic 3-6 Montessori program is a stepping stone for joyful, self-actualized, self-disciplined, kind, respectful, helpful and peaceful children.  Teachers: Jessica Hollensbe, Lisa Lamb & Vicki Matthews

 

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Elementary I (Ages 6-9)

We have a mixed age classroom serving the grades 1-3.  Students use hands-on materials to engage in all curricular subjects.  In addition to traditional academic subjects our curriculum includes peace education, cosmic education, grace and courtesy lessons, art, music and Physical Education.  At this plane of development children ages 6-9 are developing their social mores and their independence from adults.  Students learn to manage freedom and self discipline in an environment that is prepared for them by the Montessori guide.  They are able to move freely around the classroom and choose works from all curricular areas.  Students are also able to work on special interest projects throughout the year.  These students truly begin to take their education seriously, while learning time management, presentation skills and continuing their love of learning.   The 3rd grade students present a project at the end of the year, wrapping up the end of this cycle, and preparing them for the next classroom.  Fridays will be used for Art, Music, Drama and Field Trips.  Teachers: Molly Gallagher & Lindsey Quinton

 

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Elementary II (Ages 9-12)

We have one classroom at the Upper Elementary level.  This classroom includes students aged 9-12, in grades 4th-6th.  The Upper Elementary classroom is an extension of the Lower Elementary classroom.  Students continue to study language, grammar, math, geometry, science and biology and they begin their study of human history.  Hands-on materials are still utilized in the Upper Elementary classroom; however, students at this age are beginning to move toward abstraction, and are supported in that move by the materials and the guides.  Students also continue their studies in the non-academic areas, including peace education, cosmic education, grace and courtesy lessons, art, music and physical education.  In peace education, students at this age are learning how to lead conflict resolution conversations independently, encouraging their development as active, capable, mediators.  Students at this age are also beginning to grapple with the question, "Who am I?"  Through our cosmic education curriculum and practical life curriculum, students are led to confront this question, and they begin to define who they want to be as they form their identities.  To finish their time in the classroom, 6th graders complete a year-long project that utilizes all of the skills they have learned in their time here.  Teachers:  Maggie Murdoch & Angie Morrison

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Secondary I (Ages 12-14)

 We have one classroom at the Secondary level serving children aged 12-14. The Secondary class builds on the skills and knowledge developed throughout the Montessori experience. The secondary students have moved into abstraction in the curricular subjects of language, history, mathematics, and science. Grace and courtesy awareness is a common thread throughout all levels of Montessori education and is taught along with conflict resolution skills. As in the Upper Elementary, students are presented the skills to become capable, independent mediators. Questions of social justice and cosmic task are at the forefront of this developmental period and therefore require an emphasis on community involvement, volunteer work, and building practical life skills through real world business experience in the Secondary coursework. A culminating 8th grade project completes the students experience in the Secondary classroom.  Teacher: Claire Rich & Matt Malloy