How to Use the Guides
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Using the Guides
with ages 3-6
Using the Guides with ages 6-12
Maria Montessori’s emphasis was
on world peace by giving the child an overview of the whole
world and universe. The overall theme of the set of four guides
is based on Maria Montessori’s “cosmic education.”
Working from the whole to the parts, the guides begin with a
study of the child and
expands to the greater picture of our universe and solar system.
We return to our earth to investigate the four elements, an
overview of the seven continents, time lines, our continent, our
country, our state, our city. The year continues with
exploration of each continent’s culture, art, geography, biomes,
plants, animals, and people. The child gains a sense of self and
of community, a connection with the natural world, an empathy
with all of earth’s inhabitants, and an increased sense of
belonging in the cosmos.
Bird's Eye View of the Year link
at the top of the page for
an overview of the year.
Designed to be flexible in use,
the guides integrate practical life, grace and courtesy, peace
curriculum, the Great Lessons, sensorial, math, language,
science, botany, zoology, geography, music, yoga and body
awareness, and art into a purposeful theme. The set of four
guides serve as a springboard for launching into various
subjects of interest to nourish the needs of each child, while
providing a flexible framework and starting point for new
teachers and homeschool parents. The curriculum helps foster in
care and compassion for all living things, a
sense of wonder and self discovery, cooperation, community, and a responsibility for self and
the environment. Observation, journaling, and adapting and
modifying these guides according to the needs of the children
are important components of their use.
Follow the Child
Over 600 pages
packed full of ideas for continued use year after year!
More suggestions are given on each daily
page than can be used in a single day in order to provide a
variety of ideas to pick and choose from year to year.
Used with various
The same cosmic theme is used
with ages 3 to 6, 6 to 9, and 9 to 12.
The Montessori cosmic theme is cyclical
rather than linear. Each year is a step upward in a spiral of
learning as the child explores each study at his or her own
level and pace.
Building on the
solid foundation established in the primary classroom the
elementary child is eager to explore the whys and hows of
everything in more
detail and expand into related areas of interest. See the sample
pages at the top of this page for more details.
The seasonal titles- Fall, winter, Spring,
and Summer- are just a way to divide the year into quarters. The
Summer guide is an essential part of the complete curriculum.
Some schools, with or without a summer session, use a two-year
period for one complete cycle of the curriculum. Or the summer
guide may be integrated and used with the other three guides in
a 9 month program, or one cycle may be completed in twelve
The set of guides
was developed over a period of fifteen years by a Montessori
classroom director, led by the needs and interests
of the children in her classrooms.
Used throughout the
Although the curriculum was developed in the United States, it
may be adapted for use in any country. Plug in your continent
and country where appropriate and rearrange the material as
needed. Seasonal themes may need to be rearranged or modified
for local climate and seasons.