The St. James’ School provides children and families an experience different from other area programs for a number of reasons, most importantly our curriculum. Our classroom model intertwines the Montessori philosophy of education along with the traditional model of classroom instruction.
Our Montessori approach includes classroom areas devoted to practical life and sensorial materials. These works are provided to encourage the complete development of the child’s sensory system – hearing, seeing, touching, tasting, and smelling. It additionally encourages the child to prepare for and develop life skills.
Additionally, Montessori philosophy is used in the creation of our physical space, the preparation of our materials, and the establishment of our classroom rules. Classrooms are arranged with beauty and peace surrounding the space. Materials are prepared for the child to use in a complete and ordered way as to allow children to progress independently.
Traditional models of education have been combined in a way to consistently and completely stimulate the child in areas of math, science, geography, art, language, and dramatic play. Basic religious teachings are woven into our model to complete our church school teachings. Of course, materials that allow for free play and exploration are additionally available for a complete childhood experience.
Our theme based curriculum rotates on a weekly or bi-weekly basis. Components interwoven into the above models are letters, colors, numbers, and shapes. Teacher-led small group projects further enhance a child’s complete grasp in educational goals. Classroom projects, parties, field trips, and daily circle time add another level of enhancement to our program.
As much as our curriculum sets us apart, our focus on each child and family independently makes us a truly unique experience. Children are not assessed based upon an age, but based upon educational development. Materials can be created for individual stimulation. Additionally, children are moved to higher or lower functioning rooms based upon educational needs. Family members are encouraged to visit the school to witness the educational excellence that their child is enjoying.