Lower Elementary

The Lower Elementary Program at PLMS guides students through a Montessori curriculum designed to prepare them for their next step in their journey of learning while building a strong foundation. The program combines well-balanced and advanced academics with an approach to learning that instills responsibility, independence, self-confidence, self-regulation and a sense of community.

A dedicated directress of the Elementary Program coordinate the curriculum to best meet the social, academic, physical, and developmental needs of each age group.

As students progress through our Lower Elementary Program, they gradually move from concrete to abstract, from basic to complex, from distinct to integrated and interrelated. Studying Montessori materials, which are supplemented with the use of carefully selected workbooks, textbooks, and reading and spelling programs, reflect multiple levels of understanding and students progress at their own pace within the framework of the curriculum. Students’ success – both academic and social – is regularly monitored and is reported to the parents.

The Lower Elementary curriculum focuses on strengthening skills in all academic areas. Critical thinking is supported through work activities. The use of daily and weekly planners is used to cultivate independence and self-management skills. Students’ sense of community is nurtured through the culture curriculum, designed to inspire in students a broader view of the world and a growing understanding of each child’s place in it.

A primary goal of the Lower Elementary Program is:

  • To build a strong foundation in their academic journey and prepare students for successful learning at the Upper Elementary level across various academic disciplines
  • To further refine autonomy and develop confidence and competence
  • To increase awareness of social responsibility
  • To further advance critical thinking and problem solving skills
  • To encourage creative and original thought patterns
  • To continue with raising a positive contributor to our global community.

 

Language

Language Arts
As we acknowledge the importance of reading, writing, and speaking effectively, the Language Arts curriculum is integrated across all subjects. Integration of topics provides students many opportunities for creative and expository writing and reading while researching different topics in science, history and etc. Students read contemporary and classic fiction and nonfiction, keep journals, and write letters, poems, and stories. Students also focus on learning English grammar, which supports them in refining their writing skills and building a stronger foundation in English Language Art.

Library
Our Elementary in-class Library provides students with the educational resources and fiction and non-fiction stories they need to enhance their classroom learning. Our Lower elementary classroom is also part of an online library for children, which enhance the variety of the resources to which students have access. PLMS also relies on our community library to have access to broader books and resources. Students will have frequent trips to our local library to borrow books. This will give a chance to students to learn about library skills and how to use a variety of research tools to explore individual interests and complete classroom projects.

French

Students develop basic conversation skills and study French grammar and phonetics. Students build a wider vocabulary and practice reading, writing, and conversation. We implement the AIM language program in introducing French Language.

 

 

 

 

 

Science

Science is a keystone of the Montessori curriculum. Students are engaged daily in a wide range of topics including biology, zoology, botany, chemistry, and physics. PLMS students conduct science experiments, observe results, and analyze and record data. Students learn about different solutions, dissecting different parts of a plant and learn about functions of each part, examine the habits and anatomy of animals from different kingdoms, and study astronomy. These studies are just some examples to mention. Outdoor Education is a big part of PLMS lower Elementary science curriculum. Students participate in outdoor science and exploration programs that use nearby parks, resources and facilities. Programs include field trips to different parks, botanical gardens and conservation areas.

 

Cultural Studies

History and Geography

Stories about the self and the family introduce students to passage of time and history on a more personal level. Students explore history, using timelines that begin with ancient civilizations, move through medieval and Renaissance periods, and conclude with Canadian history and government. Since Montessori believed in a cosmic education and interconnectedness of all the elements in the universe, most parts of Montessori curriculum are taught intertwined manner. For instance, as students learn about world civilizations, and global geography, they also learn how it has evolved as centuries passed by. In geography, physical factors like mountains and rivers influence politics and economics are introduced as well. Geography also incorporates the study of earth science, politics, and economics.

Social Curriculum
As the importance of social-emotional skills in academic success has been proved, we implement Open Circle and Compassionate Classroom curricula. Lessons focus on teaching skills in social and emotional awareness including developing an awareness of the needs of others, interconnectedness of all beings, and the skills to be a successful member of a group. The taught skills are put into practice throughout our daily routine and in different academic parts of curriculum such as outdoor education, physical education, and Arithmetic. Students are also introduced to Mindfulness and emotional wellness where they practice stress management and building a stronger self-regulation skill.

Service Learning: Learning and Caring About Our Local and Global Community
Service learning at PLMS starts in the classroom with Peace Education and Cultural studies programs, in which we learn empathy, tolerance, and respect for others. We turn thought into action through a variety of activities in which students at all ages and levels can participate. “Friends of Community Club” is just an example that students participate to collect donations for different organizations to practice community service.

 

 

 

Technology
Technology skills are applied in the context of subject-matter learning, enabling students to acquire technology skills while they focus on their work. Students will be introduced to certain technological skills to demonstrate resourcefulness by solving problems, keyboarding, word processing, usage as a mode of communication, choosing the most appropriate tools for a task, and responsible use of the Internet to research, synthesize, and present information and share ideas.

 

 

 

Phys Ed & Health

Health and fitness activities are designed to develop students’ physical, mental, and emotional health. Human body system, stress management, and S.M.A.R.T. goal setting are some of the topics that are discussed during the health class. Students go to a nearby Fitness & Recreation Center once a week for different sports and games such as skiing, skating, racquet sports, and gymnastics.

 

 

 

Going Out

Elementary Students have entered a new stage in their life. They have started a period where they have a reasoning mind and are creative, imaginative and social. At this stage children have left the phase where they were finding themselves as an individual and have entered a stage where they want to find their place as an individual in their local community, society and eventually in the global community. By knowing these characteristics of the children, PLMS offers an inquiry-based curriculum that focuses on the needs of the child and meets them to help the whole child to achieve his/her outmost potential. A curriculum based on Montessori cosmic education that shows the interconnectedness of the whole universe. An environment limited to the walls of the school would not be sufficient enough to cover such great pedagogy. That is why the learning environment for this age group has been extended beyond actual school to the local community, institutes and organization, libraries, museums, art galleries and etc. That is why “going out” is a big part of Pine Lake Montessori elementary program.

The going out trips not only help the children to get the knowledge they need to learn about the topic that they were searching for but also they have practiced life skills such as “real world” social skills, being responsible, money management, time management, problem solving, cultural awareness, team playing and self-reliance. These are the skills that no textbook or teacher could teach the child but can only be attained by real life experiences.

Math

Students study a broad range of mathematical concepts including basic computation, decimals, algebra, measurement, money, patterns, graphs & charts, problem solving, and geometry. Standard textbooks, the renowned Montessori manipulatives, application of knowledge through everyday life experiences and memorization of math facts are all employed to help students see the relationship between math and everyday life. Our approach is designed to thoroughly prepare students for middle and high school math.

 

 

 

Art & Music

The Arts are one of the main part of our curriculum where children have a chance to display their knowledge, imagination, emotions and creativity through different art genres. That is why arts not only are offered as separate lesson to learn but also integrated into the student’s classroom work. In Visual Art lessons students explore art history, critique, aesthetics, and the making of art. They study artists and their unique styles in a cultural and historical context, and acquire hands-on skills using professional art materials. As they progress through the spiraling curriculum, students explore concepts and materials in greater depth, and focus on developing creativity and aesthetic awareness, manipulate elements and forms to convey or express thoughts, feelings, messages, or ideas through the arts. Reflection, intent, and process are valued highly in the Art studio. To create works of art that express feelings and ideas, students are encouraged to draw upon their own experiences, research, and imagination. Students engage in a range of art projects from two- and three-dimensional works of art to conceptual and performative pieces. Students learn about musical notation and composition. Through performance, research, and exploring the historical context surrounding various musical fields, students gain a deep appreciation of music.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Upcoming Events

Open Houses:
Thursdays, 9: 00 to 11: 00 am.
Except December 13, 27, 2017 and January 4, 2018.

December 13, Toddler's Holiday Celebration.
December 14, Casa Two Holiday Sing-a-Long.
December 15, Casa One Holiday Sing-a-Long.
9:30 - 10:30 am.

Winter Holidays, December 25 - January 5.

January 19, Parent-Teacher Interviews,
No School for children.

January 26, 3rd Parent Partnership Night.
6:30 -7:30 pm.

February 16, Professional Development Day.
School is closed for children.

February 26 - March 2, Montessori Week!