The following (World Languages, Experiential Education, Service Learning, Character Program and Learning Services) are key components incorporated into each specific grade level program (Toddler, Primary, Elementary and Middle School). To learn more about any of these specific components, please email email@example.com or call 303-674-0093. Thanks!
True to the Montessori method, children at MSE see themselves as a part of the larger world. Our World Languages and Culture Curriculum supports this philosophy by offering Primary – 8th grade students an innovative and developmentally responsive approach to language instruction. MSE strongly believes in foreign language instruction not only so that children acquire a second language, but also because of the physiological brain development that happens as a result.
Beginning in our Toddler Program, children are exposed to the Spanish language and culture through songs, games, and celebrations. As the students move into the elementary program, their language skill instruction is formalized through Language Lab and Conversation Class and integrated with understanding different cultures.
At the beginning of their 6th grade year, students can choose from the following languages: French, Spanish, Mandarin, and Italian. Four classes are offered weekly to include two Language Labs, one World Culture Class, and one Conversational Class. This broad-based, innovative curriculum will introduce them to basic conversation skills, encourage their curiosity about the world, and further prepare them for further linguistic and cultural studies in high school and beyond.
Also, the Middle School takes an international trip once a year during spring break (optional, but available to all 7th and 8th year students regardless of the language they have chosen to study) to a country that speaks one of the above languages. Students went to Germany in 2015, China in 2016, Quebec, Canada in 2017 and will be traveling to Cuba in 2018. The children are immersed in the culture and language and participate in meaningful service work. Click here to read about a trip our students took to Costa Rica in the article titled Experiential Learning at MSE.
At MSE, we believe that powerful learning happens outside the classroom. The Montessori philosophy emphasizes the importance of children being in nature, and we use our natural mountain setting to its full advantage. Beginning in Primary, students hike to the top of Mount Falcon and participate in the annual Night Hike. Lower Elementary students spend an overnight at Deer Creek Camp, and Upper Elementary students participate in several overnight trips that provide experience in the outdoors.
The experiences that children have in the lower school prepare them for the rich experiential education opportunities in Middle School. During the first few weeks of school, 6th year students hike Mt. Goliath, 7th years ride their bikes from Frisco to Breckenridge, and 8th year students summit Gray’s Peak (elevation 14,278 feet). In September, the entire Middle School student body and faculty spend a week at one of three rotating camps studying mountains, desert, and ocean habitats. The winter brings overnight hut trips to the 10th Mountain Division Hut System with plenty of day hikes and adventures throughout the year.
Not only do these experiences integrate curriculum and provide hands-on opportunities for meaningful academic learning, they also nurture the development of the whole child. Social relationships become fostered when two students have to work together to climb a mountain, and the shared goal of every child making it to the top result in strong group dynamics. Individually, a student’s confidence grows as he is pushed safely outside of his comfort zones to find success. Students come away from an outdoor experience thinking, “If I can do that, I can do anything.”
An integral part of the Montessori learning philosophy is empowering children to make the world a better place. Even at toddler age, we offer children opportunities to make a difference. By participating in events like the hop-a-thon, bike-a-thon, and the Senior Resource Center food drive, our youngest students begin to understand the power of giving back to their communities and world.
Lower Elementary students make and serve lunch at The Gathering Place, upper elementary students bring needed good to the Mountain Resource Center, 8th year students visit Bessie’s Hope once a month to provide companionship to the elderly as part of the aging curriculum, all students sent a little “sunshine” to Boulder flood victims through drawings, cards, posters and a video, and middle schoolers sewed book bags for students in Tanzania – and that’s just a sampling of how the kids have been involved in service learning in the past six months.
Students, ultimately, inspire us by what they start without our direction! For example, lower elementary students held bake sales to contribute to programs that protect the rainforest, an upper elementary student collected stuffed animals as a way to comfort ill children, and middle school students worked in a Spanish-speaking only Headstart Program designed to help children of migrant workers. One of our alumnus went even one step further and she started her own community service club as a freshman in high school.
Our C.A.R.E. (Compassion, Attitude, Respect, and Excellence) Character Program reflects the Montessori spirit of inclusivity, positive attitude, respect for self and others, and academic excellence. It is an ongoing program that is part of the students’ everyday lives at MSE and is integrated into all content areas of our curriculum.
The Montessori approach to education is widely recognized as the pedagogy most able to meet the needs of a diverse group of students.
At MSE, we address the social, emotional, physical, and academic abilities of each student every day in the classroom. Through a combination of teacher observation and assessment tools (such as project-based learning, presentations, and DIBELS testing), we identify students who may benefit from additional support.
Our two Learning Specialists at MSE, who are highly trained in learning differences, write and oversee the implementation of a learning differences plan (LDP) for any student who needs accommodations, along with their Division Head. Together with these experts, our classroom teachers, along with parents, are committed to meeting every student’s needs.
In addition to our strong support services, our school culture is one in which the students understand that everyone learns differently. They include and welcome each other, and there is a deep recognition that every child’s unique contributions to our community are honored.
We accept students with learning challenges on an individual basis and when we are confident that we can meet their needs. If you would like to discuss whether MSE may be a fit for your child, please contact us by phone at (303) 674-0093 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.