The Montessori Method provides children with a prepared environment, which allows them freedom to select individual activities corresponding to their periods of interest. Dr. Montessori emphasized that the hand is the chief teacher of the child. All the equipment in a Montessori classroom allows children to reinforce their casual impressions by inviting them to use their hands for learning.
At The Montessori Play and Learn Centre (Argyll Montessori School Ltd.) in Edmonton, AB, emphasis is placed on early literacy, following the principles of a Montessori education. Over and above meeting all the developmental needs of the children (the physical, emotional, cultural, and social), our staff work closely with the students to build their academic skills. This is done with each child individually, accounting for that child’s pace of learning and his/her unique strengths and learning patterns. The staff members work closely with families to keep them updated on their child’s progress.
Dr. Maria Montessori believed that no human being is educated by another person. An individual must educate themselves, and a truly educated individual continues to learn long after the hours spent in the classroom because he/she is motivated from within by a natural curiosity and love for learning.
Dr. Montessori felt, therefore, that the goal of early childhood education should not be to fill children with facts from any selected course of study, but rather to cultivate their own natural desire to learn. The Montessori classroom encourages children to remain inquisitive of their environment, and investigate their surroundings.
In the Montessori classroom, this objective is approached in two ways:
1. By allowing each child to experience the excitement of learning at his/her pace.
2. By helping each child cultivate their inherent tools for learning so that they will be able to continue to learn in all realms of life, for the rest of their lives.
The Montessori materials are designed to help the child master skills independently and at his/her pace. The use of the materials is based on the child’s unique aptitude for learning, which Dr. Montessori identified as the “absorbent mind.” She frequently compared the young mind to a sponge, which literally absorbs information from the environment.
The Montessori Play and Learn Centre promotes and supports all ethnic and cultural celebrations. To this end, every effort is made to recognize and celebrate the ethnic diversity of the students attending our school. Parents and family members are invited to share the uniqueness of their culture with the class.
Music is offered to our students on a weekly basis. Our Music teacher comes once a week to teach children to sing to the accompaniment of the piano.
We hold two concerts every year. The Christmas Concert is held in December, and the Spring Concert is held in May.
All the children participate in the concerts. The highlight of the Spring Concert is a cultural dance performed by our younger students and a play performed by our oldest students.
Our parents are an important part of our program. The partnership between home and school cannot be overemphasized. Our program is family-friendly, and family members are encouraged to drop in and visit at any time without an appointment. Our staff members work closely with our families to provide the best care for each child in our program. Every family’s uniqueness is respected.
The last Friday of each month is set aside especially for parents to come and spend time in the classroom. Parents are encouraged to participate in the program by giving feedback, making suggestions, getting involved in special events, and sharing their expertise.
Formal Parent-Teacher Interviews are arranged on a yearly basis.
The Centre is open between the hours of 7:30 AM and 5:30 PM from Monday to Friday, except on Statutory Holidays.
Classes are conducted between 9:00 AM and 4:00 PM
Children are expected to be in their classrooms before 9:00 AM
For parents wishing to pick up their children earlier, special arrangements may be made with the child’s classroom teacher.
Our regular academic program operates between September and June. During the summer months (July and August), a modified program will be offered to those students and families who wish to register for the program. Class registration for July and August is optional. The summer program will be a non-academic program, with emphasis on play, outings, arts and crafts, and visits to neighborhood parks and recreational facilities.