Children in the Downtown Montessori Academy Lower Elementary program enjoy multi-age classes (grades one, two, and three) and a three-year cycle of study. With a low student/teacher ratio and with the help of assistants, a teacher can give patient attention to each student, and can determine a student’s learning style and interests. Students learn abstract concepts by working with Montessori materials, and the Lower Elementary lessons require self-discipline and enhance the student’s ability to concentrate.
Students have opportunities to mix with their peers from other classes at certain times throughout the day. The school day allows for blocks of concentrated work (individually, in pairs or, in small groups) in the Montessori Curriculum.
Downtown Montessori Academy utilizes the Scholastic Guided Reading Program and Writer's Workshop.
Lower Elementary students also participate in physical education, art, music and in the Urban Ecology Center’s Neighborhood Environmental Education Program (NEEP).
The Upper Elementary follows a 3 year curriculum cycle in all non-math areas of study. In depth research plays a dominant role. We continue to provide multi-age grouping within an environment that encourages cooperative learning and self-discipline. This is an explosive period of social and intellectual growth.
The Upper Elementary program is based on the “Great Stories” and explores everything from the microscopic to the cosmic, allowing the child to discover the interrelatedness of all things. The program builds on the foundations of the Lower Elementary program. The child continues to learn through discovery, experimentation, and exploration at an individualized pace.
An interdisciplinary approach to learning is also emphasized as is respect for self and community. Materials and group activities develop individual and collaborative skills in the areas of biology, mathematics, language, history, geography, music, and the visual arts. This environment fosters the child’s natural curiosity. The child learns ways of inquiring, investigating and resolving questions. The sense of responsibility to self and to the community, begun in the Children’s House and enhanced in Lower Elementary, is further developed in the Upper Elementary level.
Upper Elementary students also participate in physical education and in the Urban Ecology Center’s Neighborhood Environmental Education Program (NEEP).