Nestled in the Oak Grove community, a child-centered approach to learning greets families and children. As you approach Oak Grove Montessori School, you first see a well-appointed farmhouse, which houses the classrooms. However, look a bit further and you will notice beautiful walking trails, expansive playgrounds, gardens, and chicken coups spanning the 12-acre farmland.
The school looks and feels different from any traditional preschool or daycare. The classrooms are referred to as “prepared environments” that are specifically designed with low shelves and beautiful materials which are age and ability appropriate to encourage children to want to learn by exploring their interests. However, children are also encouraged to learn by teaching.
“The primary classrooms have mixed ages and mixed skill levels,” explains Kirby Butler, who is the chair of Oak Grove’s Board of Directors. “Peer learning is important as our younger children learn from their older friends. The older children reinforce their knowledge and gain leadership skills through giving lessons to the younger children.”
The Montessori Method is over 100 years old and used all over the world. Kirby tells us, “At Oak Grove we like to say our children learn a responsible and caring attitude for themselves and the world around them at a pace tailored specifically for them.”
Oak Grove focuses on individualized curriculum. If a Montessori classroom has 24 students, each of those 24 will be at a different academic level that is observed and tracked by the teacher. Montessori teachers give one-on-one lessons to each student depending on the child’s specific level and need. Kirby says, “This is possible because the children largely work independently, spending much of the day practicing work they have already been given a lesson on.”
Kirby has seen a marked difference in the early development of her two children thanks to Oak Grove Montessori School.
“My oldest child began at Oak Grove at one and spent four years here. She has transitioned beautifully to a traditional classroom and is reading well above grade level. She loves school, and my husband and I solely credit her success to the strong foundation she received at Oak Grove. My second daughter is three, and she began Oak Grove as one of the first babies in our infant program. I can already tell the difference in her development thanks to the additional time she has gotten in this incredible environment. “My husband and I joke that Oak Grove taught us how to be parents, but it is true,” she laughed. “This school has shaped the way we speak, discipline, and encourage our children, and we are forever grateful.”
Enrollment for the 2019-20 school year is open. Now is the perfect time to schedule a visit to see the magic of Oak Grove Montessori School first-hand. For more information click here.