Montessori Life for cubs
The gardens at Kennedy reflect Montessori's philosophy of the importance of using nature to nuture a child's sense of wonder and connectivity to the world. The gardens enable the students to connect with nature through hands-on, real- life learning experiences. Our gardens are divided into two distinct areas. One area consists of a butterfly garden, a wetlands area including a pond, and a simulation of a Midwest Plains area. The opposite end contains the raised-bed area where vegetables and flowers are grown. Maria Montessori wanted to have the students develop a sense of unity and connection of all things. The gardens lend themselves to all areas of the cirriculum. Students can do real world math from counting the seeds to learning about area and perimeter. The gardens are a perfect place to contemplate the beauty of a plant or flower and use that for a springboard for writing. Social Studies can be enhanced by the plains and wetlands areas. Research on how the Native American and early settlers used the plants can be augmented by the study of the actual plants they used. The possibilities for Science are endless. Finding examples of food chains, life cycles, and studying change over time and examining pond life are just a few examples. The vegetable gardens enable the students to discover where food comes from and how to grow it. They can have a "farm to fork" experience. The gardening and food preparation are all a part of Montessori's emphasis on Practical Life, that part of the curriculum that emphasizes independence, coordination, and cooperation as well as learning how to handle tools and learn valuable skills.