Junior Primary 3-6 Years

Junior Primary follows the Montessori Method of education. In a classroom adapted to their developmental needs and innate capabilities, children seek to direct their movements in purposeful activity. Independent effort is encouraged and protected, concentration is allowed to grow and individuality is honoured. Dr. Maria Montessori believed that children naturally possess a positive attitude towards learning, and we foster this at Blue Gum Montessori School.

There are five defined areas of the Junior Primary classroom:

Practical Life

Practical Life includes some of the daily routines your child has already seen at home: preparing food, washing dishes, dressing oneself and communicating with others. These real life tasks provide a link between what happens at school and at home. Practical Life exercises are crucial components in the overall development of young children. They encourage the development of concentration, inner discipline, coordination and independence, and indirectly prepare children for writing and reading. These exercises allow the child to find their sense of belonging through participating in every part of their classroom community.

Sensorial Activities

Sensorial activities were designed by Dr. Maria Montessori to help children express and classify their sensory experiences. By educating the senses we are not trying to make the child see better, but helping them to know what they see. The exercises of the senses provide children with keys to exploring the world and develop a basis for creative expression and abstract thinking. These activities support and develop skills and dispositions such as exploration, observation, problem solving and order. Sensorial materials prepare for learning in mathematics, language, science and geography. Activities often include matching and grading materials that isolate the sense of sight, sound, touch, taste and smell.

Language Activities

Language activities include all elements of spoken and written language taught in a sequential, yet integrated way. In Junior Primary, the spoken language that has been developing since birth is elaborated and refined through a variety of enrichment activities including songs, games, poems, stories and pictures. With materials such as the sandpaper letters and moveable alphabet, children learn to link phonetic sounds to letter symbols. They progress using multi-sensory materials to compose their own written work, read the work of others, and learn to communicate their unique thoughts and feelings.

Mathematics Activities

Mathematics activities build on and extend the skills learnt with Practical Life and Sensorial activities, as well as the many mathematical experiences children encounter incidentally in their daily lives. Concepts are introduced using concrete sensorial materials. These initial explorations develop an understanding of number quantity and recognition, counting and sequencing. Sensorial work prepares the child for the introduction of more abstract mathematical concepts such as the decimal system and the processes of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division.

Cultural Activities

Cultural activities help children develop an awareness and appreciation of the world around them through the study of geography, biology, science, history, technologies and the arts. Educators share the wonder and beauty of the Earth with children focusing on real experiences and inquiry learning. They have opportunities to observe, explore and investigate using their senses, and are given language for talking about what they are learning. The Culture curriculum teaches children how to learn about things and about the depth and diversity of ideas. It promotes higher order critical and investigative thinking skills.