A MONTESSORI PRE-SCHOOL FOR YOUR LITTLE GENIUS TO OWN
Our school is situated in the suburbs of South Kensington on the quiet street of Northumberland Road. Little Genius’s Montessori is a small pre-school catering to children between the ages of 2-6 years old. We aim to help the children develop to their highest potential in terms of independence, socialisation, concentration, creativity, emotionally, intellectually, academically and much more. We aim to give the children at our school the best foundation possible so as to give them the best opportunity to succeed.
We try as much as possible to be 100% Montessori and follow the Montessori principals in their entirety. It has been found that in this way we are able to guide the children in their learning process better than if we were to combine Montessori with other teaching principals.
In the last years of pre-school we correctly prepare the child for the transition into traditional schooling to help them make the move comfortably.
At Little Genius’s Montessori we aim to give your Little Genius the best foundation possible. With a good foundation we allow ourselves to have the best opportunities for the next step. Our aim is to help your child develop a well-rounded foundation in all areas of development; intellectually, emotionally, socially, physically and spiritually.
The Montessori method is a method of education developed by Dr. Maria Montessori, a child psychiatrist. Educating using this the Montessori method focuses on independence, freedom with boundaries and the respect for the natural development of a child. The method is based on the theory that children have an amazing innate ability which drives them to learn and explore without any external motivation from parents, caregivers or teachers. This ability is what us Montessorians call the child’s inner teacher, it does exactly what it says, it teaches the child from within. The child’s inner teacher guides their development in all areas of their life, physically, intellectually, emotionally and socially. Each child’s guidance system differs from that of another child and the Montessori method recognises each child’s uniqueness so that no child is held back or left behind in their education. For this reason Montessori emphasises a child’s freedom of choice. This freedom allows a child to make their own decisions improving their independence and self confidence.
This section focuses on the practical activities of daily life. Such activities include dressing frames with buttons, press-studs, zips and lacing. These activities prepare children to be able to dress themselves. Other activities include opening and closing boxes and bottles, sorting objects by colour and size, how to pour liquids without spilling, how to clean up if the have spilled and more. Practical life aims to help children manipulate their environment and things that appear in their environment with as little trouble and frustration as possible.
This section of Montessori aims to activate the senses. The Montessori activities in this area involve the use of sight, taste, smell, hearing and touch to complete the individual tasks. All materials in this section are didactic, which means that they are intended to instruct the child on what to do rather than needing a verbal explanation from an adult. This also means that all the materials have an built-in control of error, which means children are able to see their own mistakes and correct it themselves, thereby improving independence and self-confidence.
Mathematics is an important part of our daily lives, it is all around us. The Montessori method of exposing children to mathematics gives them a strong foundation to begin their maths journey throughout their school careers. Right from the beginning though sensorial we allow the child to be able to recognize size discrepancies (shortest to tallest, thinnest to thickest, biggest to smallest) this preparation for geometry allows the child to identify solutions to problems ie if one puts smaller blocks underneath bigger blocks the tower is unstable and will fall. The meticulous sequencing of structuring a 10 part tower gives the child the ability to learn the importance of approaching a problem in a logical step by step process which, as we all know, is the ground work for highschool mathematics. By the end of your childs preschool years they will be able to add, subtract, multiply and divide.
The Montessori approach to language begins right from the start in practical life. A child learns to spoon beans from one container to another, this allows the child to learn to hold a spoon which is similar to that of holding a pen (go ahead try it). The first exercise in the language section is tracing shapes using specific Montessori tracing insets to allow the child to practice pen control in preparation for writing letters. Learning to read (yes your child will be able to read before Grade 1) is introduced systematically starting with letter recognition, the name of the letter and its sound, then continues with linking the sound to form phonetic words, C, A, T, cat. Once this is mastered there is a gradual increase in the number of words and the difficulty of the words and before you know it your child will be able to read the Dick and Jane book we all read in Grade 1.
Natural sciences in a Montessori environment include, botany, biology, zoology, and science. Here your child will learn about the world around them botany introduces the child to plants and how they grow and survive, the types that exist and how plants are important to our environment. In biology your child will learn about their body and how everything works (however the birds and the bees talk is reserved for the parents). In Zoology, children learn about the animal kingdom from the smallest of creatures to the largest of mammals, and an annual trip to the zoo is fun too. Finally our lessons in science allow children to experience the how and why, why does something sink or float? How can water be a solid, a liquid and a gas? How does a magnet work? We learn about space, the solar system, stars, and our Milky Way.
When approaching arts and culture in a Montessori environment we try as best we can to expose the child to all the different ways we can express ourselves. Such ways include learning about music, painting, drawing, dancing and other types of physical movement. We also learn about our own culture and the cultures of others, this promotes the future of our world to learn understanding and tolerance for those who are different to ourselves. We in no way encourage or discourage any cultures or religions but rather express a factual understanding of the subjects we discuss.
Cheri Ford matriculated from Jeppe High School for Girls in 2005, after which she began a degree towards becoming a Chiropractor. After four years of studying in this field, her passion for children pulled her towards a different calling and a career change was made. From here on, Cheri pursued a diploma in Early Childhood Montessori Education and graduated with outstanding results. In the same year, she enrolled at UNISA to widen her knowledge and now holds a degree in psychology. After teaching at a variety of schools, Cheri quickly realised that to be able to give children the best possible start in life, it would be best to open and teach at her own school. Here, she is now able to apply the Montessori principles holistically, believing that this is the only way to fully benefit from the Montessori method. In January 2014, Little Genius’s Montessori opened their doors.
We are now open for registration for 2017. The school term begins on January 18th, 2017. Get your registration in today and ensure that your little genius gets the best start to life.