Spruce Tree Montessori will support the development of each child in all areas – academically, socially, physically, and emotionally using proven Montessori techniques and approved Montessori materials.
Spruce Tree Montessori has begun the process for accreditation with the American Montessori Society (AMS) by registering as a ‘Full Member’ school. The AMS membership is a collaboration of teachers, administrators, schools, families, and others who prize Montessori education. As an AMS member school, Spruce Tree is a part of a movement to improve education for children around the globe, with representation at the United Nations and a strong advocacy voice in public policy affairs. The AMS accredits full member schools that undergo rigorous criteria for defining and maintaining the high standards set forth originally by Dr. Maria Montessori. Though the process can take up to three years to complete, Mrs. Binkley is dedicated to implementation of the standards and criteria from the start and will work vigorously with the AMS through the accreditation process.
Components necessary for a program to be considered authentically Montessori include multi-age groupings that foster peer learning, uninterrupted blocks of work time, and guided choice of work activity. In addition, a full complement of specially designed Montessori learning materials should be meticulously arranged and available for use in an aesthetically pleasing environment. The AMS also requires that the lead teacher in each classroom hold a Montessori credential from an accredited training center for their assigned level.
Parents play an integral role in their child’s educational experience. Children enrolled at Spruce Tree Montessori benefit from parental involvement in various ways. Parents are expected to volunteer at the school, at school-sponsored events, or for the school through various opportunities within the community for an equivalent minimum of nine (9) hours per family during the school year.
Cultural programming is a large part of the Montessori cosmic curriculum and includes educational holiday celebrations throughout the year. We believe that through exposure children can learn tolerance and compassion for all people. The classroom historical and holiday celebrations will be optional; however, we encourage families to respectfully acknowledge the religious freedoms and beliefs of those in our school community and beyond. Parents may be invited to attend and/or present and participate in topics familiar to their family.
Spruce Tree students go out into the community regularly. They learn the meaning of philanthropy through opportunities to volunteer in our community through school projects and class field trips.
In order to respect the courageous history of our great country, students will learn the United States Pledge of Allegiance, but respectfully have the option to vocally participate. Newspaper articles, radio and TV news programming, as well as exposure to current events will provide lessons in citizenship. Occasionally, recorded and/or live television broadcasts will be a part of the educational programming. Historical events, cultural celebrations, national elections and top stories offer valuable world perspective and children at Spruce Tree will be exposed, in short intervals, to news as part of their learning experience.
Respect for self, others and the surrounding environment, both indoors and outside, is a part of the social experience at Spruce Tree. A few ways we teach conservation and respect for the environment:
- Encourage filling water bottles with tap water for daily use.
- Provide ceramic and glass dishes for lunch and snack time.
- Provide cotton linens, rather than paper products, for general use.
- Utilize classroom recycle bins.
- Use eco-friendly cleaning products.
- Use lamps with energy-efficient bulbs.
- Encourage reuse of lunch bags and containers.
We use technological resources (laptop and iPads) to supplement and enhance various topics of study and as student understanding of certain subjects allows. Elementary students learn word processing/typing, listen/speak/read/click through individualized foreign language curriculum, and learn how to use online resources for research. They will be encouraged to read various media and do screen activities to enhance their learning experience.