Primary (Ages 2.5-6 years)
The primary root of a plant digs deep into the earth, providing a means to anchor and support the plant and the subsequent root systems. Likewise, our primary classroom is a fertile ground for our children to firmly anchor their future academic, social, and spiritual learning.
Just as the root begins to pull nutrients from its surrounding environment to allow a plant to emerge, so will our classroom nourish our preschoolers through an observation of God’s wisdom and infinite order as we explore creation together.
The Montessori primary classroom has materials designed to stimulate all the senses of the child in order to collate and classify the knowledge they are gaining.
Developing The Four Core Skills
The primary aim of every material, every lesson, and all daily work, is to develop what we call OCCI.
- Order(O): Order is created both externally, through a well-organized environment, and internally, in the way the child operates within the classroom. Thus, a routine is very important as well; with a place for everything and every thing in its place.
- Concentration (C): Concentration is necessary behavior before any learning takes place, and our classroom procedures and materials encourage it. The child who laboriously scrubs a table and attends to the details of their work is laying the foundation for calm effortless concentration in future academic pursuits.
- Coordination(C): Physical coordination is necessary behavior for children because they learn through the body and senses. Skills such as balance, hand-eye coordination, rhythm, fine-motor control, and body control are all cultivated through opportunities provided by the materials. Attention to movement is not instinctive, but is rather a planned, voluntary action.
- Independence (I): Independence is a goal of learning and comes from a child’s innate desire to understand and affect his or her environment. It is only through self-motivated accomplishments that we experience the joy of learning.
Without OCCI, no academic curriculum has the opportunity to flourish. So, too, our primary classroom has its root encapsulated in the soil of OCCI to allow your child’s full potential to bloom.
The first six weeks of school are dedicated to the “normalization process.” This is when a child learns to begin trusting their instincts, developing social consciousness, and refining order, coordination, concentration, and independence. Likewise, the teacher gains the ability to direct the student’s attention in a sustained and concentrated way by giving a well-timed lesson, both in ability and length. This special period of interaction time between teacher and student is unlike any other during the school year.
For this reason, we do not have any parent observation in the classroom during this time period.
The October 6, 2023, Parent/Teacher Conference is our first time to demonstrate all we have learned. It is a special conference, including a speaker, and a Montessori Walk, where your child will guide you through parts of their day and present lessons “as if they were the teacher and you are the student!”
The following chart describes students’ expectations to continue learning in the Primary Classroom after the first 6 weeks of school (normalization period.) Students who consistently present on the 1-2 level of age-appropriate behaviors, after 6 weeks of instruction of appropriate behaviors, will be moved to the Adaptive Behavior classroom to ensure the continued success for all students in an individualized and sequential environment for their learning.
*Any behavior that creates a safety risk for other students or teachers will be moved to Adaptive Behavior immediately*