In addition to our classroom teachers, Christian Montessori School of Ann Arbor employs experts to help Children’s House and Elementary students further explore areas of our integrated curriculum.
These experts work with students following the Montessori principle of meeting students where they are and helping them achieve goals through an individually paced curriculum. Materials are included on the classroom shelves so throughout the week children can further their study and exploration in the areas of Spanish, Music, Art, Physical Education and Young Children and Worship/Children and Worship.
In each of these areas our goal is to help children develop the confidence, and acquire the skills and tools needed, to express themselves creatively and spiritually.
Our music program teaches children the fundamentals of music and encourages creativity and self-expression through sound, rhythm and movement.
The Kindergarten and Lower Elementary Music classes are introduced to basic concepts of music theory, rhythm, ear training, and voice training. We work within the genre of classical music, learning about instruments, composers and music history. Each week, the students are offered opportunities to sing, perform, improvise, and listen to various styles of music. Our music environment includes piano, recorders, xylophones, autoharp and several percussion instruments which inspire creativity. We also incorporate movement, drama and improvisation exercises into our music class, combining acting with musical accompaniment.
In addition to our classroom activities, professional musicians from the Ann Arbor Symphony are invited to share their talent and offer children an opportunity to play and experience a variety of instruments in an “instrument Petting Zoo”. CMSAA also organizes periodic field trips to live classical performances.
“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything.” – Plato
Our CMSAA art program provides an opportunity for children to discover and express their distinct, unique voice in every project. The rudimentary elements of composition and overall creative visual decision making are presented in a way that offers complete freedom within the lesson parameters of the day. The children are invited to share and discuss their artwork at the end of each class, which often sparks more inspiration and exploration. Viewing the world through a new interior, individual visual lens that will lead to curiosity and artistic discovery is the overall goal.
“Art activities in the Montessori classroom are not meant to impress parents. Montessori artwork might never be featured on the wall of your local super market. Montessori art has a higher purpose: to support the child’s creative development. He can take as much time as he needs, incorporate skills from previous lessons, collaborate with others, and take risks.” – Dr. Maria Montessori
At CMSAA we know that childhood is the easiest time to learn a foreign language. Children naturally immerse themselves in the new words and sounds of a new language. At CMSAA children receive Spanish classes by an experienced native speaker. We apply the Montessori philosophy by using the 3 period lesson principle and a variety of sensorial materials, including songs and music. Learning is done in small groups where Spanish is another classroom lesson in which the child is eager to participate.
Our Physical Education goals are to show students that exercising and playing sports are not only fun, but assist in keeping us healthy!
Instruction occurs both outdoors (weather dependent) and indoors. Children learn to play relay races, soccer, tetherball, field hockey, kickball… to name a few. Each class begins with stretching, to help the children become more flexible and to prevent injuries. Throughout the school year the children work hard on the Presidential Youth Fitness Program. All children make individual progress with all activities including: sit-ups, push-ups, pull-ups, and the shuttle run.
As the children participate in the Presidential Youth Fitness Program, they will acquire the skills to increase their endurance, strength, and flexibility, which can stay with them for a lifetime. Therefore, each child is encouraged to participate to the best of their own ability.
Young Children and Worship/Children and Worship
Children and Worship is a program designed especially for children to experience the mystery and love of God through a unique story-telling format and multi-sensory materials.
The teacher quietly tells the story as she places wooden figures representing the characters in the story on the story mat. Children are invited into the story as the teacher asks ‘wondering questions’ such as, “I wonder how God was with the people in our story. I wonder how God is with you?” The materials are kept in the classroom for children to work with on their own throughout the week.
As children enter Elementary, Children and Worship includes time for them to reflect individually through drawing and journaling.