Kindergarten Program Description
Our language arts curriculum concentrates on letter recognition, sound recognition, phonics, concepts of print, and word knowledge, with an emphasis on sight words. Our Montessori sequence takes the children independently through identifying the beginning sound of a word, ending sound, and middle sound; then word building, blends, digraphs, etc. Students then move on to word building and sentence building. Students create How To books, All About Me books, animal reports, fairy tale stories, and a book report and share them with the class to practice presentation skills.
Our math curriculum concentrates on number recognition and number writing to 30, counting to 100 by ones, fives, tens and twos, greater than/less than, geometry (2D and 3D shapes), addition, subtraction, time (to the hour and ½ hour), and money. The students independently work through the Montessori sequence, using a multitude of hands on materials that take the children from concrete understanding to abstract.
Our science curriculum follows the NGSS standards as well as combining the Montessori science curriculum. Topics include the five senses, living and nonliving, vertebrates and invertebrates, the five classes of animals, forces in motion (push and pull), an introduction to the simple machines, energy, plants and animals, gravity, weather, and basic engineering. We study these topics through experiments, exploration, and discussion.
Our culture curriculum concentrates on learning about citizenship, who we are, where we came from, where we live, past/present/future, the difference between needs and wants, the difference between goods and services, and community helpers. We also combine Montessori geography concepts such as globes and maps, the seven continents, land/air/water, and landforms.
Our practical life curriculum is a major part of the beginning of the school year and it is reinforced and built upon throughout the rest of the year. It focuses on learning life skills such as scooping, pouring, tweezing, zipping, buttoning, tying, table setting, hand washing, using tools such as a hammer and screwdriver, and sorting. These skills help the students prepare for many academic skills as well.
Our peace education focuses on teaching children how to handle conflict with others, problem solve as much as possible without the need of a teacher, and learn when and how to take a break when needed. We each have a peace corner in the classroom where students can go to re-focus and/or resolve conflict with another student. We also use the art of coloring mandalas to find peace and calm ourselves. In addition, we teach the students a new important character trait every month to practice and refine.