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Three Year Cycle

Dr. Montessori observed children and defined four stages of development (0-6, 6-12, 12-18, and 18-24); each stage is approximately 6 years and has its own developmental characteristics and challenges. The Montessori approach was developed in response to the needs and characteristics of the evolving individuals at each plane. In a Montessori environment, children are grouped in mixed ages and abilities in three to six spans: 0-3, 3-6, 6-12 (sometimes 6-9 and 9-12).

The three year cycle is an essential element to Montessori education. Allowing children to stay in the same Montessori environment with the same group of children and teachers through the full three year cycle is critical for teachers and children to build a very strong, stable and consistent community. Children can concentrate on the learning process without worrying about the transition and spending time to adjust to new teachers and new environment. Our teachers are able to make strong connections with children during these several years and give them better support based on their individual needs.

During these three years, children experience different roles, responsibilities and expectations. The first year children are the beginners. They not only get lessons from teachers, but also learn from the older ones by observing and listening to their work. With the help of the older ones, younger children usually learn quickly and enthusiastically. The second year children are more independent and comfortable in the classroom. They learn how to interact with both older ones and younger ones, while developing their knowledge and skills in all different areas. The third year children have the unique opportunity to be role models and community leaders. Their knowledge is reinforced and their skills are strengthened by practicing and sharing with the younger ones.

A mixed age group environment also contributes to the moral development of children as they learn and practice to respect others, be sensitive to their needs, and to collaborate and build a community spirit.

The third year children excel in our classrooms, and experience the full benefit of Montessori education. As an authentic Montessori school, we are committed to offer the best possible Montessori education to each child. During the admission process, all prospective parents are asked to commit to the three year cycle in the Montessori environment in order to reach the optimum results in our classrooms.