As a Partner Provider our early years curriculum uses the Montessori approach to bring to life all aspects of Realising The Ambition and Scottish Curriculum for Excellence.
Children’s learning is interdisciplinary. Guided by the teachers and their peers, they work with beautiful didactic materials and gradually develop concentration, refinement, and a positive learning disposition.
Each child’s social, physical, intellectual and emotional development is observed by staff whose job it is to ensure that individuals are given all manner of opportunities to satisfy their interests. By keeping our practice up-to-date, our ideas fresh and following the progress of child development research, our curriculum meets and expands upon the standards of A Curriculum for Excellence.
The main areas of the Montessori curriculum from 3 to 6 are
Practical Life Skills
Practical life activities provide opportunities for the children to practise life skills such as caring for the classroom, using child- sized brushes and dusters, watering plants, and caring for pets. Children develop practical and social skills enabling them to feel capable, self-reliant members of the community.
The Montessori cultural curriculum introduces a plethora of activities that develop the children’s understanding of the wider world. Children use globes, puzzle maps and artefact boxes to underpin activities which build their understanding of other countries, cultures and people, plants, animals and habitats.
The roots of language communication and self-expression stem from all areas of children’s exploration. There is free access to a library area where factual and fiction books are given equal prominence. Staff discuss storylines and characters with the children and our creative arts specialist hosts group activities during which the children role play characters from their favourite books. As they show an interest in alphabet sounds and letters they are guided to progress through the literacy curriculum step by step.
The Montessori sensorial materials refine and enhance children’s sense perceptions, allowing them to gain maximum stimulus from their explorations of the world around them. Children use construction games, puzzles and listening activities to investigate concepts such as big and small, light and heavy, or long and short. There are many opportunities to explore colours, textures, shapes and patterns.
We recognise that mathematics is underpinned by an understanding of relationships in the environment and being able to express them in mathematical terms. Our maths materials, are simple and interesting and provide step-by-step learning. This enables each child to progress at their own rate and understand each stage thoroughly before they move on.
With the wide range of materials we provide, the children are free to innovate, to explore information and in so doing, to assimilate new concepts of seeing and understanding. Imaginative exploration spans all areas of classroom experience and is complemented by our visiting arts specialists.