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The Elementary Environment

Practical Life – Practical life remains important in the elementary classroom as children care for their environment, engage in community service, practice grace and courtesy, participate in field trips, and develop oral presentation skills. They take responsibility for maintaining cleanliness and orderliness, support younger students, learn communication and conflict resolution, contribute to their community, exhibit appropriate behavior in public events, and present researched information to their peers.

Reading - In the lower elementary classroom, students focus on phonetics to develop reading skills. As they learn the sounds represented by letters and letter combinations, their reading proficiency improves. Comprehension skills are also developed through activities such as peer discussions, predicting, and using context cues. Classic literature books are introduced to enhance these skills and engage students in cross-curricular learning, incorporating history, geography, and science. The choice of reading materials is carefully selected by the teacher, taking into account student interests and exposure to different genres of literature throughout the year.

Grammar – In the lower elementary classroom, grammar is introduced after children start reading. Over the three-year cycle, students learn about the nine parts of speech using geometric symbols. They label words in sentences and analyze their functions. Through activities with grammar materials, students deepen their understanding of sentence structure and explore components such as subjects, predicates, objects, adjectives, and adverbs. This layered approach builds a strong foundation in grammar.

Writing – Children in the elementary classroom can engage in writing even before they are ready to write with a pencil. The movable alphabet allows them to create sentences and stories, aiding in organizing their thoughts. This concrete approach helps children internalize the skills necessary for proficient writing. As they progress through the writing process, students learn about sentence structure, paragraphs, editing, capitalization, and punctuation. They explore different writing styles, including fiction, non-fiction, poetry, comparative paragraphs, and friendly letters. Additionally, children develop basic research skills, such as using dictionaries and children's encyclopedias, to support their writing endeavors.

Mathematics – In the lower elementary classroom, mathematics education focuses on operations (addition, multiplication, subtraction, and division) and math fact memorization. Concrete Montessori materials are used to develop number sense and facilitate the transition to abstraction. Fractions, measurement (length, weight, area, temperature), geometry (shapes, angles, triangles), and practical applications like money and time are also covered. The curriculum emphasizes hands-on learning and active engagement.

Biology – In the lower elementary classroom, students explore botany and zoology as part of their biology studies. They learn about the classification of living things, starting with the Domains and Kingdoms Chart. In botany, students examine plants, studying their parts such as leaves and flowers using materials and nomenclature cards. They also engage in activities like identifying and sorting different leaf shapes. In zoology, students explore the animal kingdom through nomenclature cards, puzzles, and real specimens. They research and present information about vertebrates and invertebrates, delving into topics like habitats, adaptations, and animal characteristics. Independent research allows for further inquiry and exploration in this area.

Physical Science – At the beginning of the school year, students are captivated by the fascinating story of the formation of the Earth, which serves as a launching point for their exploration of various curriculum studies. They delve into topics such as the universe's formation, the solar system, and the specific characteristics of our planet Earth. Through hands-on experiences and research, they gain knowledge about the laws of the universe, the different states of matter, the Earth's orbit around the sun, its composition, and the changing seasons. This initial presentation sparks their imagination and sets the stage for their continued learning in these areas.

Geography – After gaining an understanding of the Earth's formation, students progress to studying land and water forms, as well as the continents and oceans. Once they grasp the concept of continents, they delve into the in-depth exploration of a specific continent. This involves labeling puzzle maps and creating their own maps. Through extensive research, they investigate various countries within the continent, learning about their unique cultures, economies, governments, capitals, flags, and languages. The cornerstone of this learning process is independent research, which culminates in presentations where each student shares their findings about a specific country, allowing everyone to learn from one another's discoveries.

History – History in the Montessori curriculum follows a broad-to-specific approach, starting with the study of the universe and culminating in the exploration of life on Earth. The concept of time and its passage is introduced, providing students with a sense of their place within the grand timeline of history. Through research and making connections, students learn about the needs of humans throughout time and the contributions made by those who came before us. In the third year of lower elementary, students delve into the Timeline of Life, examining the evolution of life on Earth from its earliest forms to the arrival of humans. Time lines and engaging stories form the foundation of this historical exploration.


The Montessori elementary curriculum is designed to be interdisciplinary, integrating various subjects and promoting a holistic understanding of the world. The curriculum goes beyond the mastery of basic skills and focuses on fostering independent thinking, creativity, and critical reasoning. Dr. Montessori's concept of Cosmic Education emphasizes the interconnectedness of different areas of study and encourages students to make meaningful connections. Through this approach, Montessori education instills important life skills such as collaboration, conflict resolution, leadership, community service, and social responsibility. The curriculum aims to provide students with a well-rounded education that extends beyond academics and prepares them to thrive in various aspects of life.

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