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Our Montessori School Schedule

There are seven students that attend our Montessori school.  Compared to just our own two boys that were with us at the beginning of the school year, this is a lot!

No more are the days when we begin and end learning whenever we'd like.

Five extra students means a lot more structure and planning.

Truth be told this has been very good for us and for our boys.

Here's what our Montessori school schedule looks like.

Our Montessori School Schedule

The Start of our School Day

Our school day starts at 10 AM.

Breakfast is ready when our students arrive.  They wash their hands.  We say a blessing on the food and everyone takes turns making their plates.

Originally we only planned on serving a morning snack offered half way through our work cycle, but I noticed that students, including my own children were hungry much sooner than that. Starting our day with breakfast was the perfect solution.

Once everyone is settled at the table eating their breakfast we begin our morning gathering time.  

Students are much more attentive when they have their hands busy and their mouths full.

Our morning gathering time consists of three components:
  • Emotions Check-in
  • Current Event Discussion
  • Songs

Emotions Check-in

"One test of the correctness of educational procedure is the happiness of the child." -Maria Montessori

We always start our day by going around the table and asking how everyone is feeling.  This helps our students make the transition from home to school It also helps us understand any other factors that may influence their ability to learn on any given day.

Our students are learning to express emotions freely and honestly.  They're learning that it's perfectly normal to feel more than one emotion at a time, even if they seem like complete opposites.  

When our students start their day expressing emotions,  the chances of behavioral issues while learning lessens.

Current Event Discussion

"If help and salvation are to come, they can only come from the children, for the children are the makers of men." -Maria Montessori

We encourage our students to be informed contributing United States and global citizens.  One way we are able to do this is by discussing current events.  

Each day I choose a headline to discuss in class.  Sometimes headlines involve religion.  Other times we talk about politics.  There are some days when we discuss weather.  On days when our country or the world is mouning, we discuss tragedies.

Our current event discussions follow the same sequence each day.

First I share the event, giving background issue and an explanation of sides, if there are any involved.

Second I ask my students their emotions and opinions related to the current event.  Our students know they are welcome to express opinions freely so long as they are kind and respectful towards others.  They know that each student is entitled to their own opinion and it's okay to disagree.  

Our goal in these discussions is to teach our children to take perspective and be open to all thoughts and ideas.  We want our students to develop their own beliefs and values based on a well rounded education and then find their own place in the world.

When we discuss heavy topics we often follow up with a "Take Action Plan."  

The question is always the same.

"What can you do to help this situation?"

It is after this question that our students discuss ways that they can take action.

Our Montessori School Schedule-Work Cycle

Sometimes it's as simple as saying a prayer or smiling and giving a compliment to someone who is being bullied or ridiculed.

Other times they may decide to learn about a different religion or custom to develop a better understanding of a group of people and rid themselves of fear.

When a extreme weather event has occurred they may decide to donate clothes, shoes, toys, books, or other items to the cause.

Songs

"There should be music in the child's environment, just as there does exist in the child's environment spoken speech. In the social environment the child should be considered and music should be provided." -Maria Montessori

We end our morning gathering time with song.  

Songs always change the mood, no matter how somber our discussion of current events may be.  

Songs are a great way to teach concepts that may be difficult to understand or remember, especially when they come with a music video for all to watch.

Our Montessori School Schedule-Team Work

For the past few months we've been enjoying songs about astronomy and chemistry from the album, Here Comes Science.  We've also been using songs to practice skip counting and introduce multiplication.

Our students dance, sing and thoroughly enjoy this time of the day.

I introduce one new song a week that we watch and sing to first.  Then I have one student select a song we've learned in the past from a jar of labeled Popsicle sticks.  We use an iPad to provide the visual presentation.

Students know that after songs are finished (10:30 AM), their work cycle begins.

Three Hour Montessori Work Cycle

"These long hours are necessary, if we are to follow a directed line of action which shall be helpful to the growth of the child." -Maria Montessori

Over the course of the last few months we have been working up to the recommended three hour Montessori work cycle.  All have proven successful with it.

Our Montessori School Schedule-Concentration

During this three hour block students choose their own work and complete individualized lessons with a teacher (myself or my husband).

Each student is permitted to take a five minute breakwhenever they feel they need it most. During this time they go to the peace corner where they can rest.  

Some of our students have various special needs where a break is a necessary part of their day.  It is only fair to allow all students this opportunity.

The three hour Montessori work cycle ends at 1:30 PM, when lunch is served and we gather once again.

Afternoon Gathering Time

Students fill their water bottles, gather at the table for prayer over lunch and then fix their plates.  I give announcements and reminders and then students settle in for read aloud time while eating.

Our Montessori School Schedule-Kitchen Tasks

We have found meal time to be the best for reading aloud. Students are busy eating and are able to focus on the story without outside distractions.

After lunch and read aloud are finished our students go outside to play until parents arrive at 2:00 PM.

Our students love our schedule and have come to look forward to it daily.  Many have developed their own routines during the three hour work cycle, while other change up their plans on a daily basis.

What does your Montessori school schedule look like?

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Our Montessori School Schedule



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