Barrie Montessori’s Primary learning environments for three to six-year-olds (two in McDermott Hall and one in the Neubert Cottage on the upper campus) contain the curriculum areas typically found in a Montessori early childhood classroom: Practical Life; Sensorial; Art; Language ; a class library area, Cultural (including Biology, History, and Geography); Math, and Peace/Mindfulness.
These spaces provide our Primary students with the opportunities to develop, practice and hone concentration, coordination, order and independence. Through hands-on work in a carefully, intentionally designed, and prepared environment, students develop independence, confidence, and a passion for learning. These skills are essential to children participating in the formation of their intelligence as they build the foundation for future success.
Children have an intrinsic need for order, combined with the instinctive capacity to absorb impressions from their environment. Primary classrooms are designed to serve these needs. Hands-on materials are sequentially organized into curricular areas within which each item has its place. This strengthens the student’s sense of order and provides a sense of security in the world upon which the child can depend.
Students are encouraged to choose activities based upon their particular interests and are introduced to new possibilities both by teachers and peers. A sense of responsibility is fostered, as students are encouraged to share materials, complete each activity, and return the materials in good condition for other children to use. The order of the classroom also assists the students in organizing the impressions that they are receiving by helping them create “mental file cabinets” for the efficient storage and retrieval of information. Special classes include art, music, physical education, and Spanish.