Bloom! Curriculum

Our Curriculum

The Montessori classroom is designed to stimulate and entice children to engage in growth-promoting activities while cultivating and protecting their natural love of learning. Each day provides opportunities for communal activities, independent work, and unstructured play. Perhaps the most defining characteristic of an authentic Montessori classroom is the three hour period of uninterrupted work. During this time, children work at their own pace by freely choosing among carefully selected activities that are designed to foster their development and intellectual growth. Adults and children alike respect a child’s concentration, need for repetition, and desire for independence. Group activities arise spontaneously according to the interests of the children, who form freely chosen work groups.

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The three to six environment is divided into the following areas:

Practical Life

For young children, there is a strong desire to imitate the activity of adults. Your child’s teacher provides a model of language, activity, and manners that are worthy of imitation. Practical life activities like washing dishes, setting a table, polishing silver, arranging flowers, or peeling vegetables provide children with a sense of accomplishment, independence, and an authentic sense of self- esteem. These tasks also allow children to develop their fine and gross motor coordination, gradually lengthen their span of concentration, follow an extended sequence of directions, and acquire good work habits.

Sensorial Area

Maria Montessori was one of the first researchers to recognize the importance of developing a child’s senses (the importance of which is being confirmed by contemporary research into sensory integration disorders which has found that without adequate sensory stimulation at this age children’s neural pathways do not develop in ways that enable them to retain and access information effectively). Our classroom provides children with numerous unstructured activities in which they can experiment with different tactile sensations (finger painting, sand and water tables, playdough, etc) in addition to formal lessons in which they learn to discriminate between objects and to describe, classify, and categorize their world according to the physical properties of quantity, weight, temperature, size, form, and color. Children hold, explore, and compare tablets of differing weights, cloths of differing textures, blocks of differing length, width, and height, and containers of differing temperatures and pressures. They practice comparing tastes (learning to characterize foods as salty, sweet, spicy, and bitter) and scents. As they do so, they are learning about the concepts that will orient them in their world, the adjectives used to describe such experiences, and developing a rich, descriptive vocabulary.

Language Area

We seed the child’s linguistic development by modeling rich, varied, and precise language. We listen to children with rapt attention and encourage them to utilize more sophisticated speech patterns and vocabulary. The children also gather daily for stories, songs, finger plays, and poems. Children are taught the phonetic sounds of consonants and blends in order to facilitate reading. We teach children to write using the Getty-Dubay Italic handwriting system, a beautiful script and a link between cursive and print. Additionally, older children (who do not nap) participate in the kindergarten- first grade level of the Junior Great Books Program, an acclaimed reading comprehension program based upon the classics that was developed at the University of Chicago. This program provides children with the experience of speaking persuasively, engaging in literary discussions, critically examining pieces of literature, and utilizing textual evidence to support their interpretations.


Children are born with a mathematical mind. Montessori materials give children concrete three dimensional manifestations of abstract concepts like quantity, linear counting, Euclidian geometry, decimals, and algebraic functions. Children begin by learning to associate the quantities zero through ten with their symbols; after that, they progress to learning their numbers 1-100, 1-1000, learning about decimals, and learning to perform basic mathematical operations (addition, multiplication, subtraction, and division).


Geography instruction is provided through the use of globes, puzzles, maps that children create themselves, modeling common land forms (isthmus, peninsula, island, etc) with clay and water, reading stories about the culture and livelihoods of people in different countries, cooking and sampling the cuisine of different cultures, and making models of crowning architectural achievements or architectural styles.


Children at this age are most interested in what is personal. As a result, they are taught history through the use of timelines and biographies of exemplary people. Children construct their own personal timelines in order to make the notion of the past, present, and future more concrete. Grandparents are invited to come on Grandparent’s Day to share stories and family history with the children.


Music instruction is provided through daily songs, dancing, rhythmic activities, and music appreciation activities (listening to famous compositions and learning about the lives and achievements of famous composers). Children generally study Bach, Beethoven, Brahms, Chopin, Mozart, Delibes, Verdi, & Puccini during the year. Throughout the independent work period, children also have the opportunity to go to a quiet space and listen to the day’s musical selection at the classical music listening station. Additionally, students have the option of enrolling in our integrated Suzuki Violin program. Students take weekly ‘master-class’ style lessons at the school and have the option of practicing their violin during independent work times with the help of our staff.


Science appeals to children’s natural curiosity about the environment. Throughout the year, children maintain an organic vegetable garden and vermicompost pile. Formal science instruction includes extensive units in botany, biology, anatomy, zoology, and physics (optics, magnets, electricity, and simple machines). Children learn to classify living things based upon their physical properties and according to the biological taxonomy. Children begin the year by studying protists, monera, and fungi; then we move on to plants and animals (invertebrates followed by vertebrates). Children also gain experience with the scientific method by designing and conducting simple scientific experiments.

Play Time

In an age of electronic toys, version 5.0, and virtual this and that, we believe that children still need times to just be kids. We also feel that providing children with a natural play environment is highly preferable to an over-groomed, swing set and pea gravel area with minimal natural elements. Opportunities for unstructured play are interwoven throughout the day. Weather permitting, children go outside daily to connect with nature and exercise their large muscles. Our back yard is probably much like the one you had as a child- children can run, hop, skip, jump, and chase. There are also gardens where they can dig in the soil, plant seeds and smell flowers, and watch wriggling worms.

Rest & Regeneration

We also believe that children’s need for rest demands respect. Children are taught to attend to and respect the needs of their body and its natural rhythms. Rest periods are regenerative; they improve memory consolidation, improve your child’s ability to understand abstraction, and fuel creativity. We provide each child with the opportunity for vital down time throughout the day. Each day contains a nap or rest time where children can nestle into a soft quiet environment to rest, listen to the soothing strains of a nocturne, read stories, or nap if they choose. Additionally, each space of their environment also contains places where children can sit peacefully in quiet contemplation if they choose.

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The most important period of life is not the age of university studies, but the period of birth to the age of six…for that is the time when intelligence herself, her greatest implement, is being formed. But not only his intelligence, the full totality of his personality and psychic powers is cultivated and carries on throughout a lifetime.

Maria Montessori