Building a foundation for success.
Our students are taught to make the most of their potential.
Our school’s strong reputation is based on our proud track record for excellence. Our approach is based upon the educational philosophy of Dr. Maria Montessori.
At The Montessori School Of Herndon we offer a lovely classroom setting where children work in an atmosphere of freedom and responsibility.
The Montessori materials provide a sound academic base. They attract your child’s interest and support your child’s learning. An active, hands-on approach enables your child to discover the world.
Using the child's natural inclinations as a point of departure, Dr. Montessori structured several exercises for the classroom to help the child satisfy this need for meaningful activity. For these exercises she used familiar objects--buttons, brushes, dishes, pitchers, water and many other things, which the child recognized from his home experience.
Although the Practical Life Exercises may seem simple and commonplace, they are actually a very important part of the Montessori program. Each of the tasks helps the child to perfect his coordination so that he will be able to work later with the more intricate academic materials. No learning takes place without concentration and attention. The child prepares to learn by performing exercises, which help him to gradually lengthen the time in which he can focus his attention on a specific activity.
A young child can remain unmoved by a myriad of sensory impressions in their everyday environment. What they need is not more and more impressions but the ability to understand what they perceive. The Montessori Sensorial Materials help the child to distinguish, to categorize, and to relate new information to what they already know. Dr. Montessori believed that this process is the beginning of conscious knowledge. It is brought about by the intelligence working in a concentrated way on the impression given by the senses.
Montessori children learn to identify sounds, not the name of every individual letter, in order to facilitate reading. The children use their tactile, visual, and auditory sense when using, for example, the sandpaper letters and the wooden alphabet. Even the youngest children are exposed to the sounds of the letters, rhymes, and songs that will accelerate that precious moment when they learn to read. When children master a sufficient number of sounds, they begin to write words using materials such as the “movable alphabet.” Older children work on their grammar, punctuation, and public speaking skills. Because reading and language skills are strongly correlated with the thinking process, books acquire an unquestioned importance at our school, even in a time where technology appears to be dominant.
A child can learn basic concepts of mathematics in either of two ways. He can learn by using concrete materials during the years when he enjoys manipulating equipment; or he can learn by abstract methods when he is in the elementary grades. Dr. Montessori demonstrated that if a child has access to mathematical equipment in his early years, he can easily and joyfully assimilate many facts and skills of arithmetic. On the other hand, these same facts and skills may include long hours of drudgery and drill if they are introduced to him later in abstract form.
After she observed that the child who becomes interested in counting likes to touch or move the items as he enumerates them, Dr. Montessori designed concrete materials to represent all types of quantities. In a Montessori environment, a child not only sees the symbol for 1, 100, or ½, he can also hold each of the corresponding quantities in his hand.
Later, by combining this equipment, separating it, sharing it, counting it, and comparing it, he can demonstrate to himself the basic operations of arithmetic. This activity gives him the satisfaction of learning by discovery rather than by being told. Eventually he develops an early enthusiasm for the world of numbers.
Culture, History and Geography
A Montessori classroom offers many opportunities for young children to expand their knowledge during the years when they are motivated by spontaneous interest. The large wooden puzzle maps are among the most popular activities in the classroom. The child can put each puzzle piece into place by means of a little knob on its flat, shiny surface. The introductory map of the world has a separate puzzle piece for each continent. After working with the world map, the child can do one of six puzzle maps of continents in which each country is represented by a separate puzzle piece. Finally, there is a map of the United States with a separate piece for each state. At first the children use the maps simply as puzzles. Gradually they learn the names of many of the countries as well as information about climate and products. The maps illustrate many geographical facts concretely. The children can see the great size of Russia and the positions of Great Britain, Japan and Iceland as islands.
Science and Nature Studies
Montessori children learn through observation of the world around them. When a child encounters a something new in their environment their natural curiosity and desire to learn prompt them to learn everything they can about it. The Montessori classroom aims to give the child a firsthand experience with the natural world and with scientific materials.
Art, Music, and Movement
Children are natural artists. To express this innate ability all they need is an environment that offers them the proper materials in combination with clear demonstrations using the various art processes. The art process is valuable as an experience and expression in itself. Children love process and the exploration of various media, often to the extent that the finished work is merely a by-product. As with other Montessori work, the emphasis is on process and we begin with the most basic processes and progress to the more complex.
Art is also intermingled with the various studies in the classroom with theme-related work such as Solar System Resist Painting and Tissue Transfer Butterfly Wings. In the Art area a selection of basic art materials such as crayons, markers, colored pencils, paint and easel, scissors, paper, and glue are always available for free exploration and self-expression. A lesson is given on proper use of the materials, but then allowing each child to use his or her own creativity and imagination.
The goal of Montessori education is to develop to the fullest the three aspects of the child’s nature body, mind, and spirit. Learning music happily involves all three of these dimensions and can, therefore, be a highly integrating force in the development of the child’s personality. Music-making involves a physical activity (moving, singing, playing), produced by mental direction (matching a pitch or rhythmic pattern), to convey a sentiment or idea (a manifestation of the spirit).
In a Montessori classroom, a child Begin with walking on a line and progressing to other natural expressions of movement, such as running, skipping and galloping, the child begins to associate certain rhythmic figures with bodily movements. Also, through the use of echoes, both verbal and rhythmic (clapping, tapping knees, snapping), children acquire a vocabulary of simple rhythms.
We integrate foreign languages to our Montessori Classrooms. We recognize that the preschool age is the best time for a young child's mind to learn foreign languages and try to utilize this. We teach Spanish and French to the students in a method very similar to how a child learns their primary spoken language.
We have a computer lab where the students utilize word processors, phonics and mathematics software, and online educational websites. Learning to use computers as a tool is a skill that, in today's world, is an important part of daily life. By combining the learning of the computers with educational games allows the child to better understand the computers themselves as well as expanding their academic growth.
The Montessori School of Herndon offers the following extra-curricular activities that complement the curriculum at our school. These activities are offered once a week and students can choose as many extra-curricular activities as they wish. We currently offer soccer, dance, Tae Kwon Do, and classical piano lessons.
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