|Stepping Stones Montessori School|
Middle School Program
School Year 2010-2011 marked the formal opening of our Middle School Program. Mr. Chris Simpson, past attorney and past Director of Efficiency Maine, teaches our Middle School Program. Chris brings fresh energy, a tremendous amount of background knowledge, and a depth of life experience to our school. The Directors and Chris Simpson have written the following statement that defines the three main aspects of our Middle School.
Stepping Stones Montessori School’s
Middle School Program
HALLMARK ONE Academic Rigor ~~Embrace the goal of success.~~
Maria Montessori once said, “Do not permit a child to fail until he or she has a reasonable chance of success.” We expect that students entering our Middle School Program are ready to embrace the goal of success for themselves. In addition to the rigorous Science and Social Studies portions of the program, specific academic and leveled courses will be offered in Math, Language Arts, and Foreign Language, bringing a new degree of challenge and engagement. Our Middle School students will learn to pace themselves in a new way—meeting the requirements of the specific courses in which they are enrolled. Not only will students continue to be immersed in creative thinking activities, collaboration, and problem-solving, they will also have specialized preparation for high school and beyond. The Middle School will serve as a bridge between our self-directed Elementary Programs and the more traditional environments that await our students.
__ HALLMARK TWO Apprenticeship ~~Become an apprentice.~~
Middle School years have long been recognized as ones marked by change. The Middle Schooler begins to, consciously or unconsciously, search for something meaningful. At the same time, the peer group is of greater influence. We honor this unique stage, filled with new horizons, with independent, authentic work in the wider community—another bridge from the in-house classroom to the outside world. Peers will take on an expanded role for their other classmates by acting as a sounding board, support system, and audience for each classmate’s independent project for the year. At the beginning of the year, there will be a sampling period and interest inventory where children are exposed to various community careers and endeavors. Then, each student will immerse himself or herself in a self-chosen interest area (examples—community service, career-shadowing, or authentic research). Each student becomes a true apprentice. See our apprentices in the right hand column.
A Few Examples of Middle School Apprenticeships
The world of (traditional) education is like an island where people, cut off from the world, are prepared for life by exclusion from it.