What Is Montessori?

Our Mission

Lifespan strives to embody Montessori ideology in the early education of our students. Our mission is to provide a loving environment wherein every child can feel comfortable, safe, and open to explore new horizons. Hands-on approaches are used to care for the environment through tending to live plants and animals, as well as recycling, composting, and resource conservation. Youth enrichment programs are centered on the arts and the celebration of various cultures. Above all, our mission is to encourage students to care for each other.

The Montessori Approach

The Montessori approach is designed to help each child build a foundation for a lifetime of creative learning that includes confidence in self as an independent learner.

An important aspect of the Montessori philosophy is that children of different ages work together without excessive competition. The younger children learn from the older children, and the older children gain confidence by helping the younger ones. In the carefully prepared environment at Lifespan Montessori, the child is exposed to specially designed materials and experiences to generate a lifelong love of learning.

In addition to three spacious classrooms, Lifespan offers our children large playgrounds, gardens, a nature trail, a large field (for picnics, field days, and more!), a nursing/bonding room, a lending library for children and adults, an indoor gymnasium, a performance stage, observation decks, and private parent-teacher conference rooms.

Additional information and resources for parents can be found HERE.

The Montessori Classroom

The Montessori classroom prepares children for each successive developmental plane. It allows them to take responsibility for exploring their interests, giving them the opportunity to make choices and become unique human beings.

Infant & Pre-Primary Communities (6 weeks to 3 years)

For children under the age of three years, there are two Montessori communities. The Infant class provides an environment in which children ages 6 weeks to 24 months interact under the guidance of a trained adult. After they begin to walk, at approximately 18 months, children join the Pre-Primary community where basic motor coordination, independence, and language development are fostered and individual personality is respected. Rather than a classroom, it is a nurturing social community where young children experience and learn to participate in a cooperative group.

Primary Community: The Children’s House (3 to 6 years)

Children in the Primary program possess what Dr. Montessori called the absorbent mind – the ability to absorb all aspects of one’s culture and environment without effort or fatigue. As an aid to this period of the child’s self-construction, individual work is encouraged. The following areas of activity cultivate the child’s adaptation and ability to express and think with clarity.

Practical Life exercises instill care for self, for others, and for the environment. Activities include many of the tasks children see as part of the daily routine in their home, such as preparing food and washing dishes, along with exercises of grace and courtesy. Through these tasks, children develop muscular coordination, enabling movement and the exploration of their surroundings. They learn to work at a task from beginning to end and develop their powers of control and concentration.

Sensorial materials serve as tools for development. Children build cognitive skills and learn to order and classify impressions by touching, seeing, smelling, tasting, listening, and exploring the physical properties of their environment.

Language development is vital to human development. The Montessori environment is rich in oral language opportunities, allowing the child to experience conversations, stories, and poetry. The sandpaper letters help children link sound and symbol effortlessly, encouraging the development of written expression and reading skill. To further reading development, children are exposed to the study of grammar.

Geography, biology, botany, zoology, art, music, and yoga are presented as extensions of the sensorial and language activities. Children learn about people and cultures in other countries with an attitude of respect and admiration. Children come to feel connected to the global human family. Lessons and experiences with nature inspire a reverence for all life. The comprehensive art and music programs give children every opportunity to enjoy a variety of creative activities, as well as gain knowledge of the great masters.

Mathematics activities help children learn and understand the concepts of math by manipulating concrete materials. This work gives children a solid understanding of basic mathematical principles, prepares them for later abstract reasoning, and helps to develop problem solving skills.