The Kendalwood upper elementary classroom is always full of cheerful activity. Our eldest students are an inquisitive and imaginative bunch and the elementary program strives to provide them with an inspiring learning environment which builds upon the Montessori foundations acquired through the Casa experience. Physical Montessori materials used in the Casa classroom have done the job of illustrating abstract concepts which can now be applied through advanced technology and other more complex applications. The elementary classroom is an accumulation of the Montessori experiences our older students have amassed – it is a remarkable place.
As elementary students begin to explore more abstract concepts and ideas, a great deal of classroom discussion and debate is stimulated. At this stage in the child’s development, we move beyond the classic Montessori tenet of “help me to do it alone” towards “help me to think by myself”. It is so rewarding to see it in action!
Self-exploration and character building are important aspects of helping students to grow into independent thinkers. Every morning, elementary students take part in a character lesson. The Magnificient Me lesson asks children to name one of their key attributes by completing “I am” statements. An explanation of the statement follows.
Magnificent Me Examples
Statement: I am loving.
Explanation: I greet each day with an open and giving heart.
Group discussion is an important element of this character lesson. Once students complete their “I am” statements and explanations we talk about our impressions, what these statements mean to us individually and how we can incorporate them into our daily life. Following group discussion, students write a reflection on their thoughts.
This daily practice provides children with an opportunity for quiet contemplation. They can think about the kind of person they want to be and what they want to strive towards as they grow into young men and women.
Character education extends throughout the campus and our upper elementary students have an important role to play within the Kendalwood Community. They take great pride in their daily responsibilities. Older children can be found raking leaves in the school yard, managing their Café fundraiser or acting as a reading buddy for a Casa student. These children are growing into young leaders through emphasis on acting as role models for younger students and contributing to care of the Kendalwood environment.
The Kendalwood Difference
A sense of purpose. A feeling of belonging. An understanding and compassionate family environment. Older children reaching critical stages in personal development need a supportive community where they can make sense of their expanding world. Kendalwood focuses on meeting the unique needs of these students. Our elementary program is a place for young minds to discover, creativity to flow and responsibility to take root.