Montessori for Elementary: Why Our Students Thrive


Trevor EisslerMontessori MadnessMontessori elementary classrooms are fundamentally different from traditional elementary school rooms. In fact, they are so different that it can be hard to understand how they work, and why they are so great at helping children thrive. While it would be easy to write volumes about this topic (and some have: read Paula Polk Lillard’s book,Montessori Today, if you want a detailed description of the Montessori elementary classroom), here are five key differences, and how they matter to your child’s success. Teachers are guides, not lecturers. They individualize instruction to keep each child optimally challenged. In traditional elementary education, much instruction happens at an all-class level; students generally move through the same curriculum at the same pace. This is more true now then ever, as mandatory standardized testing forces teachers to ensure that all students meet common minimum standards. This approach by definition fails to optimally challenge most of the...
More Info

Stay Cool!



Our Summer Camp students know how to stay cool! This last month, despite the heat, we have been able to enjoy various field trips and activities that have allowed us to have fun and cool off!

We hope everyone is enjoying their summer and finding their own creative ways to stay cool and spend fun time together. It is hard to believe the new school year will be starting soon!
More Info

9th Annual Fun Run Fundraiser: Service Learning



On Monday, May 16th, our students will be participating in our 9th annual Montessori Community School Fun Run! And this year, the run will be enhanced by a bouncy obstacle course!
More Info

Free Introduction to Herbalism by MCS' Outdoor Classroom Teacher


You're invited to attend a free introductory class on herbalism through Tea Time on the Trail with Donda Hartsfield, MCS' Outdoor Classroom Extraordinaire. 
More Info

Our Girls We Sponsor Through COEEF: Celebrate Education for Women





"We will continue our journey to our destination of peace and education. No one can stop us. We will speak up for our rights and we will bring change to our voice. We believe in the power and the strength of our words.
More Info

MCS and Friends for Sight Review


Last week, Friends for Sight came to our school and gave free eye exams to all of the Early Childhood students, 1st graders, 3rd graders, and 5th graders. Please see the letter below and respond if you have any questions, concerns, or feedback for Friends for Sight.
More Info

The Basics of Montessori Learning




As Montessori teachers and parents…

More Info

First Day of Winter Sports 2015 - 2016


Congratulations to all our Winter Sports participants making it through the first day! We were so impressed with the order, care, and helpfulness from all involved. Everyone did so great that we made record time getting everyone ready, gear loaded, and on the busses. As far as first days go, we did awesome! Snowbird will be sorting out, refining, and arranging groups now as they have seen the kids and identified where they should be. Please be aware that your student's group may change next week for what they were in this week.  We look forward to another successful Winter Sports year and are excited about next week's lesson. Stay tuned for updates.

Chaperoning During Winter Sports


Chaperoning during Winter Sports is a great way to get your Parent Volunteer Hours in. It is also challenging, rewarding, and a lot of fun; however, there are certain guidelines and expectations to adhere by. Firstly, as a Winter Sports Program Chaperone you will have multiple duties. These duties include helping to keep the peace and monitor the students for safety issues and concerns. Some safety issues to keep in mind while chaperoning are:Head Counts: Please keep a sharp eye on the students coming and going from the school to the bus, bus to the Cottonwood Room, Cottonwood Room to the restrooms, etc. Please ensure all students are wearing their helmets and goggles. If a student has forgotten one of those items, please let the two Winter Sports Program representatives know and they, in turn, will get that item from an instructor. If following a Ski School Group on the mountain, please ensure the...
More Info

Montessori Parents' Guide to Snowbird Mountain School


Montessori Parents’ Guide to Snowbird Mountain School
February 3rd, 10th, 17th, 24th, & March 2nd, 2016

Print article or read on:

More Info

Parent Education Night


Sign-up outside of your student's classroom. Childcare will be provided, however, you must sign up in advance. This is a really great night full of insight regarding the education of your child in relation to Montessori Philosophy. Don't miss out! (Your attendance can go toward Parent Volunteer Hours).

Your Daily Dose of Resilience-Building by Melissa DeVries, Ph.D., Licensed Psychologist

b2ap3_thumbnail_Raising-Resilient-Children.jpg
Raising children in the twenty-first century is a most rewarding challenge. In modern society we have increased access to mass media and greater sprawl within families. Youth are increasingly influenced by sources of information beyond parental control. Thus, our task as parents is to figure out how to balance sheltering our children while still preparing them for the future. Research has identified many key elements that predict better quality of life in adulthood; academic achievement, absence of medical and mental health problems, financial stability, and rewarding social connections with others. Yet most of us at one point or another face situations that create vulnerabilities in these areas. So this begs the question, how do we bounce back? And more importantly, how do we teach our children to demonstrate the same perseverance when faced with stressors? Everyday I work with families who are striving to bolster the skills and abilities of their...
More Info

Elementary Curriculum - Language

The elementary reading curriculum is designed to incorporate phonics, whole word and phonetic exceptions. Lower elementary students progress through a leveled reading program using the Pink, Blue and Green Montessori reading exercises while additional materials and experiences allow them to perfect their reading skills, develop their fluency and comprehension. The Grammar and Vocabulary materials allow the students to assimilate an understanding of the structural rules that govern the English language. Literary elements are explored during Group Literature. Lower and upper elementary students practice writing on a daily basis in classroom journals that cover a variety of writing forms. In lower elementary, Writer’s Workshops are held throughout the year to target specific writing skills. In upper elementary the different varieties of writing and writing skills are integrated into their cultural, science and literature studies. Our goal is to help the students become comfortable using writing as a communication skill. Students learn to...
More Info

Elementary Curriculum - Mathematics

The elementary Montessori math curriculum takes the students through a series of precise exercises using specifically designed materials that support the students’ emergent abilities to abstract. Using hands-on manipulative materials the students in 1st – 3rd grade are given tools by which to do their math work and so acquire a concrete understanding of math skills and knowledge. This solid foundation allows a smooth transition to abstract understanding and application of math skills during the 4th – 6th grades. Lower ElementaryUpper ElementaryNumbersLinear counting, sequencing, place value through millions, before & after numbers, <, =, or >, skip counting, ordinal & Roman numbers, one-step word problems, patterns & relationshipsFactors & multiples, rounding numbers to nearest 10s & 100s, prime numbers, squaring and cubing, estimating, multiple-step word problemsOperations+ - x / of whole numbers, regrouping, missing values, inverse operations, memorization of numerical patternsLarge operations in all 4 operations (including long division, multi digit multipliers),...
More Info

The Elementary Curriculum Overview

Different from a traditional school setting where teacher-directed curricula determines the daily lessons, the Elementary Montessori students choose their own work. Under the guidance of the teachers, the Montessori students select activities that reflect their ability levels yet present opportunities to practice and perfect skills. Students and teachers work together for large blocks of uninterrupted time within a classroom that is rich in resources. The students work at their own pace while the Montessori teachers observe and facilitate the learning process. The curriculum’s goal is to encourage students to become active learners rather than passive participants in education.The elementary Montessori curriculum is designed to meet the needs of students between the ages of six and twelve. Elementary students have an increasing ability to abstract and to imagine; the curriculum engages the students in activities that utilize these affinities. While the curriculum builds upon the student's early childhood classroom practice, it expands...
More Info

The Montessori Teacher

“Follow the child” – as Dr. Montessori asserted, the Montessori teacher focuses on the whole child and not on the daily lesson plan. Dr. Montessori wanted to create a clear distinction between the role of the Montessori teacher and that of a traditional teacher. She coined the new title “director” or “directress” for the adults in her classrooms and as the name implies their role is that of a director of activities. Nowadays the term “guide” is more commonly used. The Montessori classroom is a student-centered environment rather than teacher-centered. The teacher is rarely the center of attention. She spends the majority of her time in individual or small group activity or observing the progress of the students.The Montessori guide: tailors lessons and activities to suit the student’s learning style and abilities.prepares the classroom environment to promote autonomy amongst the students.maintains an investigation and discovery approach when presenting topics rather than...
More Info

The Elementary Montessori Teaching Method

Elementary Montessori programs emphasize active learning rather than passive reception of information. The elementary Montessori curriculum builds upon the student’s early childhood experience. The Montessori materials continue to play an important role as the student transitions from the concrete to the abstract.Lessons involve exploration and hands-on experiences. The student in the elementary classroom learns by doing hence the classroom is rich in materials, resources, movement and conversation.The curriculum is individualized. The needs, ability, interests and skills of each student are taken into consideration when lessons are planned and knowledge assessed. The Montessori student will receive extra help or direction on areas where she needs it and move rapidly through other areas where she excels.The elementary program teaches the student how to think clearly, how to research, how to express herself in writing and speech.The program fosters independent work as well as group effort.The multi-age classroom creates an atmosphere of non-competition making...
More Info

The Elementary Classroom

Students learn best within an environment prepared to nurture and enhance each student’s unique development. Multi-Age Groupings – Elementary Montessori classrooms are comprised of multi-age groupings. This is the practice of teaching students of different ages and abilities together without organizing either the curriculum or the classroom by age or grade designations. The students remain in the same classroom, with the same instructors, for several years.Classroom Areas – The elementary Montessori classroom is divided into distinct curriculum areas: Science, Geography, History, Art, Math and Language. Many of these subjects are then organized into separate skill areas. There is a large floor area for spreading out work and gathering in for community meetings and lessons. There are tables for individual and group activities. The students have notebooks for recording their work and folders to store ongoing projects. Group supplies are located in a central area. A message board displays the day’s schedule...
More Info

The Elementary Student

The elementary Montessori program and curriculum is structured around the very specific needs and characteristics of students between the ages of six and twelve years. Reason & Imagination - The inquisitive nature of the elementary student provides the fuel for the research and exploration focus of elementary Montessori. The elementary student wants to know the “why?” and “how?” The six- to twelve-year-old is able to use both reason and imagination to explore and understand increasingly abstract concepts.Exploring Society – While the early childhood student was primarily focused on the construction of the individual, the elementary student begins to explore his place in society. Opportunities continuously present themselves for the student to observe or participate, moments in which to lead or follow.A Need for Togetherness – This is the age of clubs and groups. The elementary student explores friendship and cooperation; he learns how to be a leader, a partner and a...
More Info

Why Spanish?

The United States has approximately 50 million Spanish speakers.  The Western United States including Utah have the highest percentage of Spanish speakers.  Demographic and economic trends, including greater purchasing power among Latinos and Spanish speakers and interconnectedness in the Americas from Canada to Chile, suggest Spanish will grow even more important throughout the century. Additional reasons for learning languages including better access to other cultures and communication possibilities.
Copyright © 2021 Montessori Community School of Salt Lake City. All Rights Reserved.