Upper Elementary - Ages 9-12
The Montessori Children's House of Hyde Park elementary school program is divided into two classroom environments: the Lower Elementary Classroom (Ages 6-9) and the Upper Elementary Classroom (Ages 9-12).
This six year curriculum follows the guidelines established by Dr. Maria Montessori, which is based on the developmental needs and challenges of children in this age group. Children move from the first plane of development and into the second plane of development at about age six. As students progress into this second plane of development, they begin to demonstrate the ability to reason, understand the abstract, have a vivid imagination and an innate desire to explore.
Learning in the Classroom
Children entering our Upper Elementary classroom seek more independence and responsibility as they continue their quest to develop and understand their human potential and place within the Cosmos. Social interaction remains extremely important and is manifested by the students desire to work in small groups and bond with their peers. In this setting, the exchange of academic facts and discoveries become second nature.
The Upper Elementary studies includes: life and physical sciences, history, geography, language, mathematics, geometry, art, music, computer skills, and physical education. The Montessori method does not present facts in a random fashion to be learned and forgotten after the test. Instead, the presentation of our curriculum is rooted in storytelling and concepts are presented along a historical timeline - that is, they are presented in the order in which they were developed, were discovered or emerged along the timeline of civilization. Learning in this manner, encourages children to use their imaginations to better grasp the complexity of a topic and where it falls within the universe.
The broad concepts presented in the classroom become the platform from which students explore the various subjects within the curriculum. Topics are studied in an interrelated fashion, just like they naturally occur in our world. For example, a study of the solar system may lead to research on the gods of Roman and Greek mythology, the exploration of temperature and states of matter, making a model of the system using large numbers to record planetary dimension and distance, gathering information and compiling it in a report on a planet, and visiting a planetarium. This method of discovery and the integration of information, stimulates the students interest and consequently, the desire for additional learning.
Learning in the Community
Classroom lessons are enhanced through regular educational field trips. Field trips extend the classroom environment and facilitate the social nature of the child. These outings enforce a child’s learning through experience. The integration of subjects and field trips also allows the child to relate how classroom lessons apply to life.