Lower Elementary 6 – 9 years

Curriculum Scope and Sequence

Multi-age groupings promote learning from peers. As in preschool, students work though the Montessori materials, though these are now more complex and age-appropriate.

Integrated studies provide students with unique and age-appropriate materials that help them to become accountable for their use of time, for accuracy in their work and to evaluate their strengths and areas of growth.

The five Great Stories are the foundation of the elementary Montessori curriculum. These stories are used as an introduction to all topics, providing a “big picture” to demonstrate how the sciences, art, history, language, geography are interrelated. From that point, students are introduced to increasing levels of detail and complexity within these broad areas. While working cooperatively and solidifying basic knowledge of reading, writing and mathematics, students research and explore subjects both inside and outside the classroom walls. Lessons given spark the imagination and direct children toward activities that exercise critical and creative thinking abilities and life skills.

At this age, children are developing a strong sense of personal beliefs. Activities support developing independence in a realistic way that promotes confidence and self-reliance. Activities become more student-driven, with focus on “the global good,” as well as the individual. Independence and real-world life skills are incorporated into daily routines to allow students to navigate their social worlds confidently.

Developing Skills:

  • Making comparisons
  • Forming judgments
  • Reasoning
  • Increased sense of responsibility
  • Self-Advocacy skills
  • Money management
  • Long-term planning
  • Community awareness
  • Non-verbal communication skills
  • Increased memory skills
  • Leadership & Mentoring
  • Inner discipline & accountability

Activities Include:

  • Conflict resolution
  • Student jobs
  • Daily student led community meetings
  • Community service
  • Note-taking skills
  • Test-taking skills
  • Classroom management
  • Nutrition & Personal hygiene
  • Cooking
  • Map reading
  • Trip planning and organization
  • Small business skills
  • Interpersonal relationships

Montessori’s Great Lesson:

  • The History of Language

Listening and Speaking:

  • Listening actively in a variety of settings
  • Leading groups of peers in task-oriented group work
  • Develop respectful consideration for opinions and feelings
  • Take a thoughtful and attentive stance on materials and lessons presented
  • Ask meaningful questions regarding presentations and listen thoughtfully to answers

Reading & Literature:

  • Apply reading comprehension strategies in different literature genres
  • Build vocabulary and word recognition
  • Literary analysis of various authors and genres
  • Consider various perspectives on historical events and cultures
  • Making connections to real life; compare and contrast literature to other forms of media
  • Cite textual evidence to support analysis
  • Analyze “Read-Out-Louds” via group discussion
  • Read for pleasure from both fiction and non-fiction texts

Parts of Speech:

  • Correctly identify all nine basic parts of speech, as well as advanced parts of speech, and their functions, including various types of nouns and verbs
  • Apply, discuss, and analyze uses for grammar in writing
  • Apply rules for verb conjugation
  • Apply plural rules

Writing:

  • Accurate use of writing mechanics and use of English language
  • Creative writing that incorporates various elements of study and genre
  • Accurate application of figurative language concepts in creative writing
  • Analyze and critique persuasive positions
  • Develop well crafted, multi-paragraph essays
  • Compose essays of various purpose
  • Develop organizational skills, such as use of graphic organizers or outlining
  • Cite sources in appropriate format for non-fiction essays

Sentence Analysis:

  • Understand the concept of complete, complex, and compound sentence
  • Identify subject, predicate, direct/indirect object, and their functions
  • Identify adverbial modifiers, attributives, appositives, predicate complements, nominatives, and prepositional phrases
  • Construct and diagram sentences with Montessori materials and traditional sentence diagramming

Word Study/Punctuation:

  • Identify and classify words by etymology
  • Identify challenge words and use literary strategies to determine and apply meaning
  • Correctly punctuate writing, including dialogue
  • Proper mechanic usage, including proper nouns
  • Editing and proof reading
  • Peer editing

Initial presentations are given with concrete materials, but most students are working at or towards full abstraction without the need of materials for most operational activities.

Montessori’s Great Lesson:

  • The History of Numbers

Math Operations:

  • All 4 operations explored in multi-digit form

Multiples:

  • In-depth exploration of Greatest Common Factor (GCF), Lowest Common Multiple (LCM), prime and composite numbers

Properties:

  • Communicative, associative, distributive, and divisibility

Fractions and Decimals:

  • Equivalent, proper/improper, simplification
  • Unlike denominators with all 4 operations
  • Mixed numbers with all 4 operations, including unlike denominators
  • Fraction and decimal equivalency
  • Decimal operations (all 4)
  • Decimal place value (identification, reading/writing, expanded notation)

Ratio and Percent:

  • Decimal, fraction, percent forms, proportion

Algebraic Concepts:

  • Power of numbers, squaring, cubing, bases
  • Binomials & trinomials
  • Pre-Algebra
  • Square roots, integers, negative numbers

Geometry:

  • Identifying shapes by sides
  • Measurement
  • Area & Perimeter: all polygons
  • Identification and measurement of angles
  • Calculation of formulas
  • Translations, slides, reflections, symmetry, tessellations, graphs, and coordinate planes
  • Polygons
  • Similar, congruent, and equivalent shapes
  • Apply polygon knowledge to perimeter and area
  • Formulas with circles: pi, circumference, area
  • Volume
  • Work with triangles
  • Pythagorean theorem
  • All 4 operations with percents
  • Identifying ratios
  • Percent conversions
  • Word problems with percents

Statistics and Probability:

  • Mean, median, mode, range
  • Frequency
  • Graphing and interpreting data
  • Measurement
  • Non-standard units of measure
  • Conversions
  • Distance, Rate, Time
  • Area & Volume
  • Mass
  • Weight/force
  • Temperature

Students in Middle Elementary begin to focus on the details of the natural world. Unit topics utilize hands-on experiences to teach lessons. Students also begin to incorporate more advanced research, as well as data collection and comparisons, presentations, and analysis of information. Classification of living things, as well as data and information are incorporated into all areas of scientific study.

Life Science:

  • 6 Kingdoms of Life, taxonomy (scientific classification)
  • Identify characteristics of organisms, life cycles, describe common links and connections between organisms and environments
  • Develop an understanding of structure, function, and reproduction in living systems, populations, and ecosystems
  • Understand and use classification as a systematic approach
  • Study of the human body systems, functions, and modifications of the environment
  • Biology, Zoology, Botany, Ecology, Human Body studies

Earth/Space Science:

  • Understand the essential overview of the beginning of the universe, development of four fundamental forces, formation of the planets, earth, and basic scientific principals.
  • Develop an appreciation for the scope and breadth of natural inquiry
  • Understand the properties of earth and the characteristics of earth’s materials, structure of earth’s systems, elements
  • Relationship between the earth, sun, and moon
  • Understand the earth’s processes: hydrosphere, lithosphere, atmosphere
  • Components of soil and earth’s composition (erosion, etc.)
  • Weather and associated study topics
  • Oceans
  • Water-life

Physical Science:

  • Three states of matter
  • Motion and forces (atoms, periodic table, chemical bonds, molecules)
  • Electricity
  • Physics and simple machines
  • Chemistry
  • Scientific method and research inquiry
  • Technology: function and practical use of computers, basic programming and coding, basic statistical analysis
  • Continent Studies
  • Holidays
  • Cultural Celebrations

In the Elementary classrooms, students explore history and geography in 3-year cycles, focusing on Montessori’s Cosmic Curriculum. In geography, the focus is geological history, physical geography, earth science, and various geographical concepts, including maps, geographical locations, landmarks, landforms, and world cultures. In history, students focus on the creation of the universe, evolution of life on Earth, and follow the world’s historical timeline chronologically through important historical events.

Geography: Students elaborate on the basic geographical skills learned in Lower Elementary by incorporating intellectual reasoning to geographical studies, such as exploring the roles within societies, morality in social interactions on a local and global scale, and more advanced research.

  • Empower students to understand the world in spatial terms
  • Enrich knowledge of vocabulary of geographic features
  • Enable students to use maps and other representational tools, as well as technology, to acquire knowledge
  • Enable students to create and use mental maps to organize information about people, places, and environments
  • Analyze the spatial organization of people, places, and environments on Earth
  • Elaborate on mapping and identification skills
  • Units work from the larger concept to the smaller
  • Annual Cultural Day celebration based on the year’s cultural continent

History: Great Lessons: The Creation of the Universe, The Coming of Life, The Coming of Humans.

  • Comprehend the development of geological time
  • Understand the existence of modern humans in relationship to time
  • Fundamental Needs of Humans by various categories (biome, geographical location, time period, technological advances, ancient civilization, etc.)
  • Important world events
  • Kenyan History

Students receive multiple opportunities for movement during the school day continuing to practice body awareness, speed and accuracy in the classroom and in various outdoor spaces. Students receive an additional two PE classes a week that are 45 minutes each. These lessons include Physical and Health education.

Physical Education

  • Apply competent motor skills and movement patterns to different physical activities
  • Understand concepts, principles, strategies and tactics for movement Respectful conduct and promotion of good sportsmanship, responsibility, respect for others and themselves
  • Increase communication skills and teamwork
  • Activities include: soccer, kickball, tennis, swimming, team sports, recreational sports, yoga, strength and conditioning, cooperative indoor/ outdoor games
  • Stretching and flexibility

Health Education

  • Stress management, effective problem solving, depression, goal setting and coping with failures
  • Prevention and control of childhood illness, preventions for spreading germs, respiratory and digestive systems, skin care habits, first aid for choking, rest and sleep, dental health, effects of the sun, communicable/chronic diseases, asthma
  • Respect and personal boundaries, empathy, facial expressions, violence prevention, bullying, healthy/ unhealthy relationships, stereotyping and discrimination, conflict resolution, friendships, puberty, body shape, responsibilities of parenting, refusal behavior for peer pressure, resources for sexual harassment, signs of abuse
  • Cardiovascular health, classifying food sources, obesity prevention, importance of fiber, motivations for eating, benefits for physical activity, healthy weight management
  • Short- and long-term effects of cigarettes and smokeless tobacco, addiction, marketing influences, refusal skills, strategies to avoid second hand smoke, alcohol and marijuana short-/ long-term effects, internal/external influences, refusal skills

Students receive one 30 minute Kiswahili class per week, as well as additional periods of conversational Kiswahili. In addition to further increasing their Kiswahili vocabulary, students begin to study Kiswahili grammatical structures in earnest in order to begin building full sentences. They also spend more time gaining an understanding of the cultures of Kiswahili countries. They learn using a variety of mediums including Total Physical Response, songs, games, books, movies, projects, and Montessori works.

Skills Developing

  • Conjugating common Swahili verbs in the present tense to create sentences
  • Identifying common Swahili festivals, holidays, and celebrations and understanding their cultural context
  • Using recipes in Swahili to create culturally appropriate dishes from various Swahili countries
  • Understanding world geography and using Swahili adjectives of nationality to describe different peoples
  • Following complex directions given entirely in Swahili
  • Identifying different Swahili dances, instruments, foods, famous people, books, movies, and their country of origin
  • Identifying a wide range of Swahili vocabulary related to the Arabic and Anglophone communities worldwide (festivals, timetables, food, stories, recipes, cinema, vacations, weather, cities, travel, theater)
Art

Integrated with the Montessori classroom as well as more formal lessons on technique, art is important to provide students opportunity for self-expression. Students are provided proper guidance to have opportunities to discover the world of art and open another door of exploration to aid in individualized development. Experiences in visual art often have a positive impact on self-esteem, self-discipline and cooperation.
Build upon previous activities, skills, techniques and lessons from Lower Elementary. Art activities are integrated with Cultural, History, Geography, Science and Math studies as well as other general classroom activities. Students have additional opportunities for free-creativity art at different times during the week if their studies, research and interests allow them to integrate art independently.

Art Making

  • Students apply elements of art and the principles of design to create more complex compositions
  • Build upon a variety of techniques and continue to gain skills with different tools (drawing, painting, collage, printmaking, fibers, sculpture, mixed media, technology)
  • Draw upon life experiences and imagination to create art
  • Use visual perspective in compositions

Historical Understanding and Visual Culture

  • Look at various artists and study how different cultures use art
  • Observe visual culture and make connections between art and other subjects, identify the roles of art makers in different cultures and times
  • Recognize different art styles and periods

Art Criticism and Aesthetics

  • Use art vocabulary to talk about art
  • Form opinions about art
  • Analyze and interpret pieces of art