Montessori Curriculum in Dubai

(2.9yrs to 6yrs) • Pre K • KG 1 • KG 2

The Montessori classroom is equipped with specialist educational apparatus which is of simple, yet exact nature and provokes in the young child a profound reaction of interest and attention. The apparatus is presented to the child in accordance to his needs, or what is termed in Montessori as the “sensitive learning periods” during which the child has the special capability of “picking up” on his own from the environment particular skills and concepts.

 

The Montessori classroom is roughly divided into six areas:

 

• Practical life area, (involving the physical care of the person and environment)

• Sensorial area

• Language and literacy area

• Math area

• Culture area (geography, botany)

• Art area

 

The exercises in practical life are simple, precise tasks, which the young child has already observed adults perform in his home environment and loves to imitate. The Montessori teacher must create and arrange the exercises, using the Montessori principles of beauty, simplicity, isolation of difficulty, and proceeding from simple to complex.

 

Examples are: pouring transferring, sponging, threading, cutting, to name a few. All these activities help the child to develop concentration, refine the hand eye coordination and above all help the child to become independent.

 

‘Care of self‘ activities involve fastening buttons, bows, laces, using a zipper or velcro. Children love to repeat these simple tasks, as doing them gives them an inner satisfaction.

 

Each exercise has a beginning, middle and end, thus completing the cycle of activity, aids the child to organize his thoughts and actions and gives him a sense of order. Putting things back in their place, tidying up and maintaining the environment, teaches the child to respect his environment and others around him.

 

The Sensorial Materials are introduced to the child after inner discipline, confidence and a conception of a full cycle of activity are initiated through the experience of daily living.

 

The aim of these materials is the education and refinement of the senses: visual, tactile, auditory, olfactory, gustatory, thermic, baric, sterognostic and chromatic.

At an early age the child distinguishes between smallest to largest, tallest to shortest, thickest to thinnest by manipulating the materials himself. Differences in temperature, weight, even the slightest difference in sound can be recognized by the child, once he has mastered the use of the sensorial materials.

 

Recognition of colour differences and shades of one colour can be arranged from darkest to lightest and vice versa. The tactile exercises develop a lightness of touch and movement from left to right, which is an indirect preparation for language.

 

The Language Materials prepare the child for reading and writing. The practical life and sensorial materials prepare the child indirectly for working with the language materials. The sand paper letters give the child the muscular memory of the direction in which the letters are formed while writing. So the child ‘feels’ the letter before he actually writes it.

 

Only the sound of the letter is given to the child. The sand paper serves to control the child’s movement when he feels the letter, for he knows by touch when he has slipped off the letter on to the smooth board. Thus the child is able to link the phonic sound to the symbol and its shape simultaneously.

 

Another special piece of language material is the ”Moveable alphabet”. It has the cut outs of the letters, the vowels in blue and the consonants in red. Once the child recognizes a few vowels and consonants, he uses the letters to arrange them into three letter words. So he is actually “writing without writing”. He sees the word is formed when there is a blue letter in the middle and the red letters on either side, e.g., cat or hat, bed, pin.

 

The Metal Insets are designed to contribute to the development of the mechanical writing skills. The purpose of the insets is primarily to develop the muscular control needed to wield a pencil, stay within an outline and to move lightly across the paper in a controlled movement.

 

The Math Material is a comprehensive set of activities, allowing a concrete manipulation of math concepts. Learning about number recognition, one to one correspondence, linking symbol to quantity and even introduction to algebra and geometry, is all done indirectly, as the child learns to use the material and understands its purpose.

 

As always, all material has an in built control of error and isolates the one concept it is teaching. The Montessori child is usually more ready for addition, subtraction and even division, than the traditionally schooled child. The abstract concept of ‘zero’, the decimal system, (tens, units) and fractions are all taught through concrete and exact material, not found in any educational environment so far.

 

The Culture Materials in the culture area, are the most unique of all. They teach the child everything from; continents, to landforms, to seasons, costumes of the world, flags of the world, professions, sea animals, pets, wild animals, farm animals, the water cycle, life cycles of the butterfly or the frog, parts of a plant, parts of a flower, the solar system, methods of transport and much much more.

 

Some of the materials are exact miniatures of the actual entity, such as the globe, or maps of countries, or flags and some material is teacher prepared, using real images to create a matching or pairing exercise. The children perform experiments, grow their own plants and care for them and even mold landforms out of clay.

 

Therefore the Montessori child is being well prepared for what he will learn in science, geography and biology in his later years, without even knowing it!

 

The Art Area is a ‘free to create’ area in the Montessori classroom. The foundation for art and drawing is the same as is for writing. The child learns in the practical life area to use scissors, paint brushes, crayons, stamps, glitter.

 

The child is left to work on free design. He uses the materials to create what he likes and can approach the art table anytime.

 

An easel with paints and paper is always ready in the Montessori classroom, which he works with whenever he pleases, wearing an apron before he starts and removing it when he is done.

 

Some structured art work is presented to the child, but he is free to choose if or not he wishes to do it. The foundation is laid and then the child is left to do his own exploring.

 

Music and Movement is very much encouraged in the Montessori classroom. Singing, dancing to music, varying movements to different sounds and exercises such as ‘walking on the line” prepare the motor organs for rhythmical exercises. The music and movement exercises help to develop the child’s sense of balance and control of movements of their hands and feet, which are necessary for dance, as well as being a preparation for music.

More Progams & Curriculum

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