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Swannanoa Valley Montessori School

130 Center Avenue
Black Mountain, NC 28711

(828) 669-8571


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Philosophy & Approach

School Philosophy

General Approach to Learning: Montessori

Day in the Life

General School Mission

"The Montessori classroom is a prepared environment that allows children to work towards their own development, be part of a community and explore the environment around them. Children between the ages of 2 ½ to 6 learn from direct contact with the environment by means of all the senses and through movement. The child literally absorbs everything in the environment. At this age children are refining motor coordination, social skills, concentration, a sense of order, independence and reasoning. The teacher guides children in their whole development; physically, mentally, emotionally and spiritually. Over a period of time, the children develop into a “normalized community� working with high concentration and few interruptions.

The classroom is made-up of six areas: Practical Life/Art, Sensorial, Math, Language, Science and Culture. Practical Life is the foundation of a Montessori classroom and teaches the children to care for themselves and their environment. With activities such as pouring, sewing, apple cutting and polishing the children gain concentration, coordination and self-confidence. The Sensorial Area helps children to become aware of their surrounding world through refining their senses. This area also prepares the children for mathematics by teaching varying dimension and geometric shapes. Mathematics in a Montessori classroom is taught using concrete materials. Staring with the Number Rods the children learn the concept of base ten. At ages of four and five the Golden Beads are used to introduce mathematical equations. Language is part of all areas of the classroom. With a rich verbal environment the children develop vocabulary and self-expression. Through the sandpaper letters and realistic objects the children learn their letter sound and gradually begin to spell and read phonetic words. Science allows the children to explore their environment. Through books, objects, photographs and coloring the children learn about the animal kingdom, sink/float, living
on-living and magnets. Culture is an important part of the classroom. Each month is spent focusing on a different continent, including flags, celebrations, ethnic foods and the people of different nations. Maria Montessori believed that the ultimate goal of Montessori education was world peace, for this reason culture and diversity is an essential part of the classroom.

Excerpted from the preschool's website

Home-School Connection

Parents Say They are Encouraged to:

  • Sit on the board of trustees
  • Hold social events at the school to build community
  • Fundraise
  • Are able to visit the school anytime we want
  • Go on field trips
  • Volunteer in the classroom
  • Receive newsletters

Modes of Communication

  • Notes
  • Phone Calls
  • Voice Mail
  • Email
  • Special Meetings
  • Two or More Regular Conferences
  • Drop-Off
  • Pick-Up
  • Regular newsletter/printed updates circulated to the whole school