Elementary and Middle
Sea Pines Montessori Academy has three Elementary classrooms with materials to accommodate children from first through sixth grade and one classroom for a Middle School Program for children in the 7th and 8th grades.
In keeping with the general Montessori principle of mixed ages, the elementary students are grouped into classes with two to three year age ranges:
Lower Elementary – first,second, and third grade (6-9 year olds).
Upper Elementary – fourth, fifth, and sixth grade (9-12 year olds).
School begins at 8:15am and ends at 3:00pm. In the elementary classroom, mornings are devoted to self-directed, independent learning and small group lessons. Children know what their teacher expects of them and, with self-discipline, return to their most recent lessons in progress. Teachers move about the room to assist and reinforce learning as students follow their natural pace of development. Students may work independently, in collaboration with others, or be taught in small groups. Afternoons involve silent reading, classroom lessons in broad subject areas, and enrichment subjects.
The Montessori philosophy in the elementary years also focuses on developing the whole child. The rich curriculum is similar to a liberal arts college program in that it encompasses a wide variety of skills and subjects from the earliest age. Specially crafted Montessori learning materials give children hands-on experience with many concepts traditionally left to later studies. Those students continuing with Montessori build upon a solid sensorial base they’ve built during their primary years.
- Language: Reading, Word Study, Spelling, Grammar, Literature, Handwriting, and Creative Writing
- Mathematics: Linear Counting, the Four Operations, Decimal System, Geometry, Algebra, and Discrete Mathematics
- Science: Botany, Zoology, Chemistry, and Physical Science
- History, Social Studies and Geography
- Advanced Practical Life Skills – sweeping, washing and other similar chores which are helpful at home
- Enrichment: including Computer, Spanish, Chinese, Music, Suzuki Violin & Piano, Art, Physical Education, Tennis and Golf
Montessori Curriculum Assessment
The Montessori Elementary curriculum is carefully structured and sequenced. Teachers use an online tracking system. This allows teachers to maintain educational objectives of the course of study for each area or subject within the classroom, and keep a record of which skills each child has accomplished. Each student’s progress is recorded individually.
Because Montessori Elementary Programs do not compare students against an arbitrary standard or the performance of their classmates, familiar letter grades are not used. There is a year-end summary for each Elementary student. Student narratives, a written report of each child’s curriculum activities and progress, are sent home in February. Conferences are scheduled two times during the year for every family.
Homework begins at a light pace for students in the Elementary, with expectations growing progressively as students advance through the school. Homework is intended to afford students the opportunity to practice and reinforce skills introduced in the classroom. Moreover, there is a certain degree of self-discipline that can be developed within the growing child through the process of completing assignments independently. Students are expected to give homework their full and careful attention and to do assignments on their own. Part of our objective is to have them learn how to assume this responsibility for themselves.
For more information about how the Sea Pines Montessori Academy elementary program differs from traditional education, see:
No one brings alive the beauty of the Montessori Method better than the children themselves. Please join us for a Campus Tour to see for yourself.