The Cultural Curriculum at Litchfield Montessori School
An integral part of Montessori education is the cultural curriculum presented with an interdisciplinary approach. Specialists in the arts, physical education, foreign language, and peace studies provide our students opportunities to observe, explore, experiment and discover in fields of study that are integrated with their work in the classroom. Field trips to museums, nature centers, and theaters, as well as presentations by visiting guest artists, storytellers and puppeteers occur throughout the year for all ages. Our Elementary students travel outside the school to conduct individual research assignments and projects. Students at this upper level also take overnight trips to participate in such programs as Montessori Model UN and Mountain Workshop. Recent classes have also taken trips to Montreal, Boston, or Washington, D.C.
The Creative and Performing Arts
The visual, musical, and performing arts become an integral part of most learning projects in every classroom. Our specialists also teach introductory skills and concepts in dedicated arts classes. Several times a year all children participate in holiday or cultural performances, culminating in the production in May of a classic play in which each of our Elementary children has a role on stage and in behind-the-scenes production.
Foreign Language Learning
Our foreign language instruction in Spanish begins at the youngest level, the Young People’s Community, and continues through the Upper Elementary. Introducing Latin also enhances the language studies of our Upper Elementary students. Their learning these languages becomes an enjoyable experience for our students in a curriculum filled with a variety of activities and meaningful work, including songs, poetry, skits, projects, games, and holiday celebrations. All foreign language learning develops respect for other people and integrates culture, history, and traditions, as well as the spoken and written language.
Physical education begins with basic movement at the youngest levels and progresses to the concepts of more formal games and sports. Our children develop physical confidence as well as their sense of fair play, teamwork, sportsmanship, and the foundations of life-long fitness.
Maria Montessori believed that developing interpersonal skills with even the youngest children is the foundation that will promote understanding and peace between peoples around the world. We introduce these skills at the earliest levels at Litchfield Montessori School. Social skills in personal relationships are supported with firm and kind guidance by our teachers. As children develop and become more aware of their peer group and their place in a community, they are introduced to practical tools to assist them with resolving differences, coming to consensus, and reducing unhealthy risk taking. Children learn how to recognize disruptive and destructive behaviors and are taught options for responding and communicating responsibly and safely. Always showing respect for others and understanding and practicing the skills of personal relationships enable our students to become responsible citizens who will contribute to the well being of our local and global communities.