Casa Program (2.5 – 6 years)

Doctor Maria Montessori believed that humans are most capable of learning during the first six years of life. She referred to this as the period of the absorbent mind. During these years children, through their senses, have the ability to absorb stunning amount of information from their surroundings. It is through this process that children learn language skills, gain motor and cognitive abilities, and acquire an understanding of how others should treat them.

At GMS we take advantage of this period and children’s natural desire to learn by providing hands-on and self-correcting Montessori materials. Our Montessori certified educators guide children’s learning and allow them to peruse activities of their personal interest at their own pace.
The casa classroom is a beautiful, spacious, clam, and clutter-free environment, prepared to meet this age group’s cognitive, social, physical and emotional needs.

“Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment.”

– Maria Montessori

Curriculum Components

Practical Life activities

brushPractical Life Activities are at the heart of the Montessori education. These activities involve increasingly challenging series of motor skills tasks that involve practical life goals. These goals include activities such as setting a table, sweeping, personal grooming, and pouring.
These activities tend to be presented before other curriculum areas for a number of reasons. The first of which is that they put children at ease because they have seen the materials at home and are already familiar with them. Further, working with these materials provide children with a sense of belonging and comfort; children enjoy engaging in tasks that they have seen their parents carry out. Since many children at this stage are not yet ready to deal with abstract concepts, practical life activities make use of concrete materials.
There are four goals to practical life activities: independence, promoting body control and coordination of movement, developing sense of order, and developing concentration abilities.

Sensorial Education

brainSensorial Education is unique to the Montessori education method. The goal of sensorial education is to aid children in grasping the structure and vocabulary associated with the information received through their senses. Essentially, the sensorial materials provide children with concrete examples of abstract concepts experienced in the world around them through their senses; for instance, colour, sound, and form. While refining their senses using sensory materials, children are also enhancing their other abilities such as concentration, sense of order, and intellect.

Language Arts

speakingLanguage Arts provide children with the ability to grow from emergent to fluent literacy. All classrooms are equipped with a comfortable and cozy library area; providing an inviting environment for children to read. Public speaking is also encouraged through activities such as show and tell, poetry recitals, and mystery bags filled with various objects, which children are asked to describe.

Writing is taught before reading, because the former is easier than the latter. To be able to read and write, children need to know their phonetic sounds, but the cognitive processes required for reading are more complex than those required for writing. It is easier for children to take words that they already know apart than it is to put sounds together to grasp the meaning of an unknown word.

French language is taught on a daily basis to children in the casa program.

Culture and Science

scienceCulture and Science are two other areas of Montessori education that children enjoy working on. Here, children will explore program areas such as Geography, History, Zoology, Botany, and Science.

Mathematics

calculatorMathematics is taught to children using concrete materials. This way, children not only visualize the symbol for 1, 1000, or ½, but they can also hold these quantities in their hands, feel, and see the differences. Later, as children begin to count, combine, take away, separate, and share these concrete quantities, they fully grasp the basic operations of mathematics.