The primary goal of our Montessori program is to help each child reach his or her full potential in all areas of life. Activities promote cognitive preparation, as well as development of social skills, emotional growth and physical coordination.
The Tiny Treasure Mississauga Montessori program operates on the principle of respect for each child and the environment. Children are free to work on their own or in a group at their own pace. The teacher relies on his or her observations of the children to determine which new activities and materials may be introduced to an individual child or to a small or large group. The aim is to encourage active, self directed learning and group collaboration. In the Montessori curriculum, cooperation is promoted and success of peers is valued. Children develop an awareness of individual and collective interests.
There are several distinct features of the curriculum that are common to most Montessori programs. The Montessori approach emphasizes logic and order. Children are taught one concept at a time in progression. The teacher first demonstrates the concept, then asks questions to determine the child’s understanding. Children are encouraged to master one skill before proceeding to the next activity. Each child is free to work at his or her rate in mastering tasks or concepts. The Montessori method does not let a child fail, because failure is considered to lead to a loss of self-esteem and confidence.
The Montessori curriculum also focuses on the education of the senses through materials and activities that focus on such qualities as light, sound, colour, form, texture, size and dimension. Academic learning is a key component of the Montessori experience and children begin to learn the skills for reading, writing and mathematics in the preschool and kindergarten programs. The program also focuses on creative activities that promote music and movement.
Tiny Treasure Mississauga Montessori curriculum includes outdoor activities that incorporate both practical life experiences, such as gardening and raking leaves, as well as learning activities, such as nature hikes and collaborative games. The Montessori program also focuses on field trips to leverage learning opportunities.
The Tiny Treasure Montessori environment is intended to be beautiful, orderly and uncluttered. The environment includes child-sized and moveable furniture, real tools and dishes that fit small hands, and low open shelving to promote care and independence in the young child. The rooms are organized into distinct areas of learning that support independence, education of the senses, language development, math and cultural activities. Individual mats are used on the floor for many teaching activities.
The materials used in Montessori setting have unique features. The materials are educational in nature and are carefully designed to teach a specific skill or concept. Many of the materials are self-correcting in that they will indicate to the child whether they are being used in the correct manner and enable the child to get immediate feedback after completing a task. Materials can be simple or complex to respond to the different abilities of children. Montessori materials are designed to support the concepts and activities of the curriculum. The Montessori materials are consistent in appearance, attractive, constructed from natural products and expensive. Materials are stored in open shelving that is accessible to the children. Children are taught respect for the materials they are involved with and are expected to put away their materials at the end of class.
At Tiny Treasure Montessori, the teacher is viewed as a Director of activities and, in that role, prepares the environment, carefully observes each child, and presents the materials as the child is developmentally ready to learn from them. Training typically involves a year or equivalent of study, intern teaching and supervised practice with the Montessori materials.