“Our aim is not only to make the child understand, and still less to force him to memorize, but so to touch his imagination as to enthuse him to his innermost care.” -Maria Montessori
Richland Academy’s Preschool/ Preprimary Program allows children to fully explore the beautiful Montessori materials and educational activities within a stimulating classroom environment. In addition, the development of social skills, independence, self-esteem, critical thinking skills, and a love of learning are nurtured through each child’s interaction with peers, teachers, and the prepared environment.
Through the practical life activities children will practice self help skills such as spooning, pouring, buttoning, and snack preparation, which foster their independence and help to develop positive work habits, self control, and the ability to concentrate. Each child will care for the environment that surrounds them as they learn to care for the classroom, including classroom plants and pets. Daily living activities promote the development of fine and gross motor skills, hand-eye coordination, and serve as the foundation for future work in all other academic areas.
Materials in this area of the classroom refine each child’s ability to perceive and make sense of their world, by using their senses of sight, touch, hearing, tasting, and smelling. Sensorial materials develop each child’s ability to problem solve, compare, contrast, sequence, match, sort, categorize, and build critical thinking skills.
The Montessori math materials are designed to present mathematical concepts to children in a concrete, hands-on way. The math area provides opportunities to explore numerals, decimals, geometry and the four basic operations. Mathematical discoveries and experiments in logic and problem solving are also integrated into all areas of the classroom and everyday routines.
The language arts curriculum exposes each child to materials and meaningful activities designed to enhance expressive and receptive language skills, increase vocabulary, enjoy quality children’s literature and poetry, and build the skills necessary to begin to read and write. The reading program combines whole language teaching strategies with a comprehensive phonetics approach.
This curriculum invites exploration in the areas of geography, sociology, history, botany, zoology, and meteorology. Montessori materials bring the world into the classroom environment, enabling children to expand their knowledge of the universe.
Music and Movement are integrated into all areas of the classroom. Activities such as singing and performing finger plays are part of the daily routine.
Each child will be able to express their creativity as they explore various art mediums. Art projects will refine both hand eye coordination and prepare the wrist for handwriting.
“Our schools show that children of different ages help one another. There are many things which no teacher can convey to a child of three, but a child of five can do it with ease.” –Maria Montessori
Richland Academy’s Kindergarten Program is certified by the Pennsylvania Department of Education. The Kindergarten Program is available for children who are 5 years old by September 1st and who have previous Montessori experience. During the Kindergarten year, children will explore new and familiar Montessori materials in greater detail. Building upon previous experience and knowledge, children are guided through more complex abstract lessons in all curriculum areas. Instruction is individualized, self-paced, and emerging math and literacy skills are emphasized. Children attending our Kindergarten Program will also participate in our Extended Day Program, a teacher-directed learning program, which allows children to practice their fine motor skills (handwriting, gluing, cutting, and coloring) and develop skills needed to be successful in elementary school, including following directions and completing work in a timely manner. Busing is available for Kindergarten students from their local school district.