♦ How is the Woodlands different from a traditional or local school?
Traditional schools are mandated to teach to the group and meet group goals. The Woodlands Montessori Primary School in particular, teaches to the individual and meets the individual's goals.
The Montessori program encourages active learning - learning through doing in a multi - sensory (touch, smell, sight, hearing, experimentation) prepared environment.
Children learn best when their interest is engaged. The teacher's job is to kindle the spark of interest in the child, so as to achieve the child's maximum potential in all areas.
The Montessori Classroom has many advantages. A teacher is more likely to address differences in development within an individual child. There are no grade limits to restrict the very bright child.
If, however, a child is having a difficulty, the teacher will focus on this area with the child and ensure that the child is progressing.
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♦ Is the Woodlands a religious school?
The Woodlands Montessori Primary School is a Christian based school. We do address religion within the context of culture - for example, celebrations during the Christmas, Easter, IdulFitri etc. We are fortunate to have students and families from a broad spectrum of cultures and religious beliefs. We also have Religious Specialist Teachers in the school.
♦ What is the student-to-teacher ratio at the Woodlands?
The Woodlands has one teacher and one assistant in each classroom. We have a 11:1 ratio in primary school (22 maximum). The ratio does not include the specials teachers (Music, Art, Character Building, Religion, Mandarin, Physical Education, Information Communication Technology and National Academic), which makes the ratio even lower, nor does it account for a less than maximum classroom.
♦What is the daily schedule like at the Woodlands?
Reading, Writing and Maths are reinforced daily. There will be special Deep Knowledge Unit is done on a regular basis. A Montessori Session is also attended by our students every day. Special classes are scheduled at the beginning or end of "work time" as much as possible to allow the students to develop extended concentration.
♦ How much do the children get to do on their own at the Woodlands?
Our Montessori classroom is arranged and materials are displayed to meet the needs of the individual children. Materials are selected for their attractiveness and appeal for each student, and also for the content. Teachers create an individual work plan for each student that includes work/tasks to practice and proceed with as students take the next step in developing comprehension in each core subject. Students are also allowed "free choice" shelf work as part of their weekly work plan. Independence in completing the plans and in selecting their own work is one of the major goals for each individual child.
♦ If the Woodlands students do all that on their own, what do the teachers do?
The Woodlands teachers observe and assess the needs of each student in their class. To meet these needs, teachers prepare the environment of the classroom - including the materials on the shelves, the groupings of tables and children, and the routine and special lessons of each day. Group and individual lessons prepared and presented by the teachers occur throughout each day, and large group lessons often start off the day.
♦ How much time is spent during special classes at the primary level?
The Woodlands generally has:
* Physical Education Class once per week (60 minutes);
* Character Building Class once per week (45 minutes);
* Art Project once per week (45 minutes);
* Religion Class once per week (45 minutes);
* Mandarin Class twice per week (45 minutes);
* One general music class once per week (45 minutes);
* Information Communication Technology Class once per week (30 minutes);
* Bahasa Class once per week (45 minutes); and
* National Academic once per week (40 minutes).
♦ How "Montessori" is The Woodlands?
The Woodlands education blends the distinctive student-centred approach of Maria Montessori with International Curriculum, National Curriculum and progressive teaching methods.
♦ Does the Woodlands have textbooks?
Yes we do have textbooks for our student even though the Montessori materials are so well developed and so attractive to children that textbooks normally are not needed. The concrete, hands-on, manipulative materials help children form very abstract concepts at an early age, and form a strong foundation for future abstract learning. For example, children as young as kindergarten-age work with addition, subtraction, and multiplication with four-digit numbers, using the Golden Bead Material. When students are ready for abstract learning, textbooks are introduced. For example, Maths Track text books are introduced at first grade.
♦ What Happens When a Child Leaves Montessori?
Montessori children are very adaptable. They have learned to work independently and in groups. Since they have been encouraged to make decisions from an early age, theses children are problem solvers who can make choices and manage their time well. They also have been encouraged to exchange ideas and to discuss their work freely with others and good communication skills ease the way into new settings.
Research has shown that the best predictor of future success is a sense of self-esteem. Montessori programs based on self directed,non-competitiveactivities help children develop good self-images and the confidence to face challenges and change with optimism.
Children remember 20% of what they see,
30% of what they hear, and 70% of what they do,
so the most effective learning will be in the doing.