We know from experience and research that the first six years of life provide opportunities, never equaled again, to open intellectual and emotional pathways in a child’s life. As Montessori educators, we know that the child has an innate motivation to learn, but it is up to parents and guides to provide the right environment in these crucial years to help children reach their highest potential. In that sense, choosing a preschool has become nearly as important as choosing a university. Within the nurturing atmosphere of MMEC’s Casa program children naturally work with interest and focus developing a habit of concentration and love of learning that will last them all their lives.
The Casa classes are staffed according to Alberta Family Services ratios (12:1) and have Guides with Montessori training and/or Alberta Education degrees, as appropriate – assistants are incorporated as required. The class is multi-age, with 3, 4 and 5 year olds. This ensures that each child is able to progress at his or her own pace in both social/emotional and academic areas and that each child has the ability to act as a mentor and a learner in the classroom.
Maria Montessori’s groundbreaking research on “sensitive periods” in children’s development, taught us that when children are intensely interested in a certain type of learning they master it with much greater ease and speed than would be possible at another time. This is a key principle of Montessori education. Montessori’s research showed that young children learn best by using their hands, not by looking or listening, so the Montessori materials were developed with that principle in mind. The one uninterrupted work period for half-day students and two for full-day students develops the young child’s concentration, focus and independence. Close attention is paid to each child’s interests and needs.
Maria Montessori Education Centre offers half-day morning programs and full-day programs, five days a week for 3 and 4 year olds. In their third year, all 5 year old children stay for a full day with two uninterrupted work periods.
Please Note: All Casa aged children must have learned toileting before enrolling.