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Activities for Everyday Living
This is the first area that the child will be introduced to. By observing the child taking part in these various activities the staff are able to see what the child can do well and also what the child may need support with. It is a valuable area whereby a child can learn and develop basic 'intangible' skills such as concentration and self esteem which are vital for a child to develop a positive attitude to learning and to really 'take off' in other areas of the curriculum.

Sensorial (Training of the senses)
The psychology behind Sensorial activities combines two areas: one is the child's intellectual development alongside their experiences and the second is the bodily part of the child with the five senses (sight, hearing, touch, taste and smell) directed to concrete objects in the world. This area is vital for all the children regardless of age and therefore it can be introduced to the youngest of children when they join us.

Maths The maths curriculum is introduced to the child from the very first activity on the Activities for Everyday Living shelves. They are presented with various concepts which they unknowingly absorb so when they are eventually introduced to the more formal lessons they already have a firm foundation to build on. Please remember that maths, as with many other subjects, are introduced to the child in other ways songs, rhymes, music, counting biscuits at home, matching socks from the washing basket etc.

Language Language skills include writing, reading, speaking and listening. Therefore Montessori has a system which involves development and interconnection in all these areas. In this area the teacher has a lot of input and may deliver a lesson to one or several children depending on the children and the lesson. Parents are very keen to get their children reading early but it is something which cannot be pushed or enforced. From our experience the best and earliest readers have been those whose parents have first given them an interest and passion for books, who talk to them and above all support their child through the nursery years. At this nursery and indeed many others the phonic sound of the letter is taught, e.g. cat begins with 'c' not 'see', apple begins with 'a' not 'ay'. Children who are taught the name of the letter first and not the sound often struggle to progress as quickly as those children whose parents understand the phonic system.

Puzzle Map of the World The Montessori cultural curriculum involves introducing activities that develop the children's understanding of the wider world. Children use globes, puzzle maps and continent folders with pictures and photos to underpin activities which build their understanding of other countries, cultures and people. There are many activities that teach them to match, classify and name the elements and species of the natural world using picture and name cards as well as relevant models. This is an area where the parents can help too as a walk in the park is all part of this curriculum so too is a visit to museums, galleries, trips on trains or buses or simply posting a letter and explaining what's going to happen to that letter.

Creative/Physical/Music & Movement
Drawing and Painting Other activities include painting, clay modelling, doughcraft, collage, music and movement, drama, cooking etc.

The material is constantly being changed at each half term or when the staff have observed that the children are in need of a change. This injects an extra boost to their interest and concentration levels. The shelves reflect the current project, for example minibeasts, the weather, colours etc. For instance the spindle box on the maths shelves may have conkers instead of spindles when studying the seasons of the year. The shelves are laid out so each piece of material has its own place. It is the children who keep the nursery this tidy. Because of this orderliness, they know where to go, for each piece of material and then replace that material back on the shelf in its original position in consideration of the next child who may wish to work with it.

How can I help my child at home?

There is a lot of material on the Activities for Everyday Living shelf which can be easily reproduced at home as they are from daily life such as cleaning, washing, pegging out clothes, folding clothes, polishing etc. By simply including your child in as much as you can and by talking to them they will learn a lot. You can help your child by helping them develop independence and a freedom of choice. Other ideas are, read to them daily:- storybooks, factual books, magazines, comics or shopping labels. Talk to them and wait for an answer and extend the dialogue. Point out things to them, e.g. the name of trees, birds or different makes of cars etc. Ensure their toys are suitable and cover all areas of their development. Show them how to do simple chores, e.g. putting their cups in the dishwasher. Question their thinking, e.g. what will happen if or what do you think about etc. Encourage them to listen to the radio, music or audio tapes as well as television. When you set boundaries explain why you've set them and stick to them. Try to see things through the eyes of your child. Support, encourage and guide your child, have fun with them and respect them. There are also many practical ideas which you can find in many books from the library or magazines from the local newsagent.

For more information, please email us or call on 0208 551 2884