Elementary (6 – 12 years)
Upper Elementary – approx ages 9-12
As Dr. Montessori observed, each child grows uniquely, often maturing intellectually, socially, and emotionally at different rates. A Montessori education is therefore arranged in three-year cycles encompassing skills and concepts that the child encounters and absorbs at his or her own pace, guided by a carefully trained and experienced Montessori teacher.
Our multi-age classrooms at Litchfield Montessori School that support the three-year cycle also develop a sense of community, encouraging cooperative learning across age-groups and building our children’s sense of security and self-esteem. This social and emotional growth complements their intellectual development. Children who learn both independently and cooperatively develop a keen sense of their own responsibility for learning as well as a high level of empathy and respect for others in the shared enterprise of learning.
In the elementary grades, children begin to grow beyond individualistic concerns toward an appreciation of their roles in the classroom community, eventually developing an understanding of and respect for the diversity of ideas, peoples and cultures of the world as a whole. The curriculum at Litchfield Montessori School in these two, three-year elementary cycles enhances this natural growth by demonstrating that the major disciplines of language, science, mathematics, and social studies together help humans understand, explain and order their world. Our students work both independently and cooperatively in questioning, researching, discovering, and explaining increasingly challenging concepts of the physical world. The experienced teachers at LMS guide them in their study as well as encouraging the discussion of the important ethical concepts of justice and fairness, tolerance and appreciation, empathy and understanding. The foundations set by repeated experiences with concrete materials at the Children’s House level ready the student to move toward less concrete materials and abstract concepts.
Principles of Lower and Upper Elementary:
- The curriculum is designed to meet the needs and characteristics of the 6-9 and the 9-12 year old and challenges students to problem solve, research, analyze, arrange and present information in a continually refined process
- The children at the elementary level are community oriented and experience very realistic lessons about living in accord with their peers and their everyday world
- Emphasis is placed on the integration rather than the independent study of subject matter, history, geography, cultural studies, art, music, math, science and language including Latin and Spanish
- Field trips are planned to heighten awareness and understanding of thematic study. Upper Elementary students partake in the responsibility of planning and making arrangements for such trips
- Specialists in Music, Art, Spanish, Physical Education as well as an annual theatrical production enrich and enliven the learning experience.