Primary (3-6) Program
The essence of independence is to be able to do something for one's self. Adults work to finish a task, but the child works in order to grow, and is working to create the adult, the person that is to be. Such experience is not just play... it is work he must do in order to grow up.
– Maria Montessori
At Wilmington Montessori School, the Primary Program is designed to meet the developmental needs of children between the ages of 3 and 6.
These preschool and kindergarten-age children are in what Maria Montessori called the first plane of development—the stage in a young child’s life characterized by a need for order, concrete thinking, sensitive periods for learning, and great strides in emotional, physical and cognitive development. During this time, children learn at their own rate, and it’s common for knowledge to be acquired in bursts with plateaus in between.
As in the Toddler Program, Primary students are learning through their senses, but they are no longer simply absorbing the environment as they did as toddlers. Each child follows a different learning trajectory, and moves along the developmental continuum through individualized lessons. Our teachers adapt and modify the curriculum to ensure access for all students, regardless of their skill or ability level.
Independence is crucial for children in the Primary Program. When students are able to button their coats for the first time, write their names without help, sequence numbers to 100 or read a book all by themselves, their confidence grows. They develop an enthusiasm for learning. Once they are able to do for themselves, they are capable of doing for others.