Montessori education is based on the work of Italian pediatrician Dr. Maria Montessori, whose research in the first half of the 20th century gave birth to an educational and insight that has grown world wide. Through her extensive observation and insight, she developed a philosophy based on the natural development of children and their intrinsic desire to explore, discover and learn from the world around them. She saw education not as an end in itself but as an aid to life. Learning to be kind and courteous is as important as learning the sounds of letters.
Montessori education addresses not only the academic, but also the physical, emotional and social development of the child. Thus, Montessori education is an integrated approach whose aim is to fulfill the needs of the “whole child”. The Montessori Method creates a supportive and stimulating environment where the child can unfold intellectually, emotionally and socially to manifest the special self within. Rather than force feeding information to children, the “Montessori Method” provides a child with surrounding specially prepared materials to encourage and reward the young mind’s quest for understanding. Learning is allowed to take place according to the personal needs and desires of the uniquely individual child.
Entering a Montessori classroom is entering a world specially prepared for the comfort and stimulation of a child. The Montessori classroom is a designed environment where children work together or individually with multi sensory materials that invite the child to touch, to think and to explore.
The distinguishing characteristic of a Montessori School is the total preparation of the classroom to the needs of the growing and learning child. The school itself is designed as a “developmental aid” in which materials, furnishings and decoration are selected to offer the child an orderly yet stimulating setting for exploration. Specially designed and tested materials are arranged to attract the child’s interest to a broad range of practical life exercises, sensory skills and academic fundamentals. As the child progresses, these materials serve to build a lasting framework of knowledge based on touching, seeing and hearing. This framework is quickly filled with true understanding on the concepts required for a lifetime of learning as the fundamentals of Mathematics, English and Arabic language skills, Science and Geography, and Art are reveled. The activity of both younger and older children in one classroom serves to help the child learn by teaching and to learn by experiences of older peers. In a Montessori classroom, children move about freely, choose an activity and work on it until a sense of accomplishment is achieved; they then put materials back in place before choosing another activity. Classroom materials presented in an orderly attractive arrangement helps to stimulate orderly thoughts and freedom to choose as well as developing self confidence and self mastery. The materials in the classroom can be divided into these areas: Practical Life, Sensorial skills, Language, Mathematics, Culture and Islamic Studies.
The materials in this area lead the child to self-confidence resulting from individual achievement in personal care, care of the environment and social grace. A logical sequence of activities involve the child in increasingly more precise movements, while providing a positive introduction to concentrated effort. The three- year-old learns not just to carry a pitcher without spilling, but gains the confidence to make the attempt and the motor skills to earn satisfying sense of accomplishment.
The Montessori school’s sensorial materials refine the child’s ability to discriminate between subtle variations in sight, touch, sound, taste and smell. As each level of refinement is achieved, the child develops concrete, tangible impressions of new concepts introduced in reading, writing, arithmetic, and art.
To the probing, questioning mind of the student, the arts and sciences of Geography, Botany, Zoology, and History are fertile fields of exploration. The Montessori Method stimulates both the questions of the child, and the child’s ability to independently observe and discover answers.
Language and Mathematics
Our program introduces language and mathematics through scientific Montessori apparatus. Reading, writing and mathematical skills are introduced to children through our curriculum based on the child’s interest.
In addition to the core curriculum in both the programs we emphasize Art, Music and Arabic education through movement activities to stimulate the child’s physical, creative and linguistic aptitudes.
In addition to our curriculum our school offers Islamic education based on the Holy Qu’ran and the Sunnah of the Prophet Muhammad (PBUH) where the children learn Islamic values as well as Arabic – oral and written language, which is the language of the Holy Qu’ran. Through the four basic language skills: listening, speaking, reading and writing the curriculum presents teaching Arabic as a Second language in an integrated manner where all four language skills are systematically integrated.