“Back to the Future”: Daycroft Montessori School Celebrates 100 Years of Montessori

ANN ARBOR, MI (February 2, 2007) – Today was the day that Daycroft Montessori School’s Elementary School Campus on Zeeb Road in Ann Arbor celebrated its annual Culture Day.

Culture Day exemplifies what Montessori does in terms of teaching students to be independent in their learning, confident in their presentation, and proud of their accomplishments. From kindergarten to 6th grade, the school celebrated 100 years of Montessori education. Each classroom explored an aspect of Dr. Maria Montessori’s life and work and displayed the results of their research in many different forms.

Kindergarten, at the Zeeb campus, used one of the great lessons for elementary students written by Maria Montessori, the Development of Writing, as a springboard for their living timeline. In the elementary curriculum, timelines are used across all areas to illustrate how history intertwines and develops across big chunks of time. Kindergarten students are beginning to explore the concept of time, and beginning to think about big questions such as “How?” and “Why?” With discussion, acting, and art, the kindergarten students told the story of how writing began, and its importance to everyone, especially to their own written thoughts.

The students of classroom 3-4A also used a living timeline to display the major events of Maria Montessori’s life. Their acting was superb, especially as her “father” initially disapproved of her choices in study and career. The class also developed a PowerPoint presentation of “What Montessori Means to Me,” and most expressed their admiration for Maria Montessori’s refusal to give up in the face of adversity. Posters of the “Needs of Humans” across time completed the display.

Classroom 3-4B took the opportunity to share stories that each student had written about Maria Montessori. In small groups they shared insights and events from her lifetime in storytelling form with students from both campuses. Their presentation was personal, entertaining for the audiences, and very well prepared.

The first great lesson Montessori wrote for elementary school children is called the “Creation of the Universe.” Students in classroom 1-2 A prepared a beautiful visual timeline of the Big Bang beginnings of the Universe, and each student explained a portion of that timeline. Using props and displays, each student delivered a scientific description of the universe’s beginning. It was a fascinating true story, and very well told.

Classroom1-2B had a very complete display and description of Montessori’s second great lesson, “The Timeline of Life.” Not only was their research complete and detailed, each student participated in creating a three-dimensional timeline for display by making a clay tile that illustrated part of that development. Listening to their research was a proud moment for many parents.

Classroom 5-6 presented 100 years of history, and Montessori events within that 100 years, while using the new SMART board in their classroom. The SMART board was completed only two months ago, yet the students have taken to the technology very well. Their understanding of history and important events was clearly illustrated by their presentation.

Daycroft Montessori School began as a preschool program in 1968. Since then, Daycroft has grown to include a full-day Kindergarten program, an elementary school program through 6th grade, before-school and after-school care, a summer program, and a variety of enrichment classes.

Daycroft Elementary School (grades K through 6) and Daycroft’s administrative offices are located at 1095 N. Zeeb Rd., Ann Arbor, MI 48103. Phone: (734) 662-3335.

Daycroft Preprimary School (preschool and kindergarten) is at 100 E. Oakbrook Dr., Ann Arbor, MI 48104. Phone: (734) 930-0333.

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Media Contact:
Chris Kochmanski
DesignHub, Inc.
(734) 944-8705
chris@design-hub.com

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