We are the families, children, teachers, and staff of the Wichita Montessori School. And though we’ve been an integral part of this community’s educational landscape for more than a quarter century, we’re often reminded that not everyone who might benefit from joining us has a clear picture of what goes on here.
Working with you, we hope to change that. We invite you to take a look at the information we’ve included here. More importantly, we urge you to walk through the doors of our school and begin a life-long love of learning as unique and as filled with potential as your child or grandchild.
WHAT MAKES WICHITA MONTESSORI A REMARKABLE SCHOOL
- Family-like atmosphere
- Grounded in Montessori philosophy
- Values cultural differences
- Comprehensive academics
- Focus on personal best: collaboration rather than competition
- Emphasis on Character Education and Leadership
- Whole child development
- Twenty-six year history with proven stability
- We want what’s best for the child
- Preparing each child for life
- Fosters critical thinking and problem solving
- Ignites curiosity and a natural desire to learn
- Hands-on learning
- Special classes include: Art, Spanish, French, Music, Physical Education, Computer Keyboarding, Science Lab
- Partnership of children, teachers, and families
- Children are encouraged to become global citizens
- Balance of freedom and responsibility
- Wichita Montessori School is a place of joy
WHAT WICHITA MONTESSORI SCHOOL IS
Here’s the short description: we are a school that combines highly–respected Montessori teaching methods with other proven education practices to develop 21st century skills, the core elements of knowledge, and the richest learning experience possible for children ages 3-11.
There’s a significant story behind that description. The educational approach we use was pioneered by Dr. Maria Montessori, an Italian physician who, through careful observation and extensive research, concluded that every young child possesses a naturally curious and absorbent mind. Allowing young students some latitude in exploring subjects of interest to them resulted in a far greater motivation for learning, Dr. Montessori discovered. Rather than forcing the memorization of bits of information to pass a test, the Montessori method provides children the enthusiasm, the guidance, and the tools to make learning a life long passion.
Wichita Montessori classroom materials are scaled to fit the age and skills of the child. Hands-on lessons and project-based learning promote a deep understanding of core academic concepts and keep learning fun.
Primary program students learn by exploring and manipulating objects. As they develop, students use many of those same materials as a springboard to abstract concepts. Working in multi-aged groups allows children to become partners in learning.
Older students mentor younger ones. For those just learning a particular concept, watching how older students approach the materials is enlightening and inspiring. For the older students, the sharing becomes both a point of reinforcement and pride.
As the child’s natural sensitive period wanes, around the age of 5, more prescribed work is given to the child. Teachers check the work, and then guide the child to rework problem areas of the assignment until it’s corrected to 100%. As a result, each child demonstrates his or her understanding of every learning step. It’s a solid foundation that makes for an easy transition into traditional middle schools, and life.
Wichita Montessori School classes are intentionally kept small. The child-to-teacher ratio at the primary and kindergarten levels are no more 12-to-1. In lower and upper elementary, the ratios do not exceed 16-to-1.
WHAT WICHITA MONTESSORI SCHOOL ISN’T
For starters, you’ll have to leave any expectation of chaos you have at the door when you visit our school. The open areas, multi-age classes, workstations, and group activity areas certainly create a buzz of learning. But it’s a level of activity that is manageable, respectful, and essential for learning. A day at Wichita Montessori School is divided between both group study and individual learning time, allowing children to develop skills for working by themselves and with others.
We also ask that you stretch your perception of Wichita Montessori School by about eight years. People often assume that we’re a pre-school. And while it’s true that the program provides an unequaled basis of learning for children of pre-school and kindergarten ages, Wichita Montessori is a school designed to help children build on their primary foundation, year by year, from age 6-11. Students who complete the entire WMS curriculum have developed a solid foundation, and easily adapt to a wide variety of middle schools.
Finally, though we share part of the same campus, Wichita Montessori School is an entity of its own, completely separate from The Independent School. While both schools enjoy a symbiotic relationship of mutual respect and may collaborate on projects from time to time, each is independent with separate staffs and facilities.