MSL’s Lower Elementary environments support children ages 6 to 9 years old led by Montessori certified teachers.
Students at the elementary level build upon the skills and knowledge from their previous experiences at the early childhood levels. The Montessori curriculum is interrelated and designed to spark the imagination of the elementary student.
Overview of Program
The Lower Elementary program provides students:
- lessons in virtues and peace education, techniques of responsible social interaction and peaceful conflict resolution. Lessons are given one-on-one or in small groups, and collaboration with peers is encouraged;
- collaborative learning experiences. Students learn from and with one other;
- individual and integrative studies in the areas of reading, writing, math, practical life, history, geography, world cultures, art, music, and science.
Many of our elementary students who transition from early childhood classrooms are able to read fluently. Reading fluency and comprehension are taught using the Waseca Phonics Program and the SRA program. Writing is practiced daily using the Writer’s Workshop curriculum, and spelling is taught using a Montessori based, leveled spelling program.
Lower elementary math students begin their first level reviewing skills introduced at the early childhood level. Through daily work with materials children move from concrete understanding to abstract work using pencil and paper. What is emphasized to the students as they work through the materials is the patterns and relationship between numbers.
Our cultural curriculum is designed to be taught on a three year rotation of study. The Great Lessons are presented each year. By the end of the three year cycle, students have studied all 7 continents and their biomes, animals, plants, and history.
Science lessons in Physical Science and Biology are presented annually at all levels. At the first level, students are studying the parts of animals and plants. During their second level, students work with classification of animals and plants and Who Am I cards. The third year students conduct independent research as well as generate experiments. After conducting their research, they present their findings to their community.
As part of our Peace curriculum, cultural celebrations and cultural research projects are presented throughout the year.
The elementary guide presents curriculum materials and facilitates the learning process. Learning is assessed in a myriad of ways including: student discussions, students presentations of research papers, oral presentations, book making, dioramas, timelines, and science experiments to their peers.
MAP assessments are administered three times a year. DRA assessments are performed twice a year and used to assess decoding, reading fluency and comprehension.