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Mac Donald Montessori Child

175 Western Ave S
Saint Paul, MN 55102

(651) 227-1039


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Montessori

Day in the Life

General School Mission

Since the approach grew out of a parent cooperative movement, there is an explicit recognition of the partnership between parents, educators and children. Listed below are basic principles of the Reggio Emilia approach.

The Image of the Child - Adults see each child as unique, strong, and full of potential. The child's role in the classroom is to construct their knowledge their knowledge and develop skills through exploration, self-expression, and collaboration with their teachers and peers.

Symbolic Representation - As a means of enhancing their creative, social, and cognitive development, a wide array of creative media and activities are introduced. These children represent their ideas and emotions through many "languages," including spoken and written words, visual arts, drama, movement, and more.

Education Based on Interaction and Collaboration - Education is experienced as a continuous, cooperative interaction between those involved in the school community. Collaboration takes place between teachers and children, children and peers, teachers and other teachers, teachers and families, and the school and the community. All are important in the education process.

The Project Approach - The children learn through cooperating with other children and their teachers in long-term projects based on children's interests and the use of creative arts as central features of the program. Themes follow the children's interests, curiosity and understandings.

The Importance of Time - Projects and activities are not fragmented; rather they build upon one another over time, as the children "re-visit" their original work and ideas, refining them further through new experiences, activities and forms of expression. Time is also important in building and sustaining collaborative relationships.

The Role of the Teacher: Teacher as Partner - The teacher is a partner in learning with the child. The teacher's role is to act as resource, provocateur, and partner in learning with the children. Children's work, play and discussions are documented through notes, photos, tape recordings and videos. These are carefully reviewed by the teachers and guide the curriculum and decisions based on the children's interests, ideas, and developmental readiness to acquire new skills.

The Role of the Parents - Parents are active participants in the activities of the school and in their children's projects. Parents are welcomed into the schools and collaborate with teachers in curriculum and administrative decisions. They give of their time and talents and serve as advocates for the schools in the community.

The Role of the Environment - Through conscious use of space, color, natural light, attractive and appropriate learning materials and displays of children's work, the environment serves as another teacher and is inviting to children, teachers, families, and visitors.

Excerpted from the preschool's website

A Typical Day


Hours: 7:00-6:00

Each infant is on his/her own schedule. We do not make any infant conform
to a general schedule.

Each infant does follow/or is involved in the following activities as
his/her parents and staff deem appropriate.

Arrival: Greet caregiver

arent ­ exchange written and verbal information
about the babies day and night before.

Each infant can crawl, move, swing, be rocked, cuddled, talked to, sung to,
read books to.

Each infant can play freely with any and all of the materials in the room,
infant manipulatives, teething, soft cuddly toys, sorting, stacking toys,

Each infant can nap as needed during the day.

Each infant will be fed, formula, breast milk or whole milk, solids and
snacks as they are needed or indicated by the infant¹s behavior or parents
suggested schedules.

Older infants will have several activities added to their schedule as they
show interest or approach moving to the toddler program ­ books, puppets,
puzzles, flannel board, songs, crayons, markers, push and pull toys, large
muscle, climbing toys, outdoor play and walks.

Generally, our total room schedule is:

Arrival, exchange of information, music is played throughout the day. Play
and interaction/diaper changing. Morning nap, snacks/feedings; play and
interaction/diaper changing. Lunch; Afternoon nap; Snack; Play and
interaction/diaper changing. Departure/exchange of information.

6:30-9:00 Free Play, Music, Stories

8:30 Music, Singing, Puppets and Flannel Board

9:00 Snack

9:15-10:00 Fine motor activities, puzzles, manipulatives, art
activities, blocks, small group work, sand and water play (Diapers changed
as needed).

10:00-10:45 Outdoor/Large Motor, Play Yard, Walks

11:00-11:30 Large Muscle ­ Puppets/Stories

11:30-12:30 Lunch

12:30-2:30 Nap Time

2:30-2:45 Snack (Diapers Changed)

3:00-3:45 Fine motor activities, Art Creative Movement, Puzzles
Manipulatives, Blocks, Small Group Work.

3:45-4:30 Outdoor Play

4:30-5:00 Large muscle/free play

5:00-5:30 Stories/snack/music


5:30-6:00 Videos or books

6:30-8:30 Activities include: puzzles, books, blocks, small
manipulatives, art materials, dramatic play, puppets music and large muscle.

8:30-9:00 Story/Music

9:00-9:15 Large Group

9:15 Snack

9:15-10:30 Work Time Sensorial Math Language Practical Life Science
Writing Art Geography Small Group Work

10:30-11:15 Outside/Large Motor

11:15-12:30 Lunch

12:30-2:30 Nap-free play for non-nappers after hour rest.

2:30 Snack

2:45-3:30 Outside/Large Motor

3:30-5:30 Arts, creative dramatics, story, music, sand & water play,
free play/outdoor play

5:30-6:00 Videos and books (individual)
Excerpted from the preschool's website

Home-School Connection

Modes of Communication

  • Phone Calls