New Montessori school opens in central Tokyo

ABC International School is delighted to announce the opening of a new division of ABC.
Opening April 1, 2014, ABC Montessori International will aim to provide the same standards of excellence in early childhood education that have distinguished ABC over the past 15 years. Following the internationally renowned Montessori methodology and curriculum, ABC Montessori International will offer an affordable international school education.

Classes will be held Monday–Friday from 9:15am–2:15pm, with specialized after-school classes in ballet, cooking, sports, and English available daily from 2:30–3:30pm.
The Montessori system is an educational approach developed by Italian physician and educator Dr. Maria Montessori, about 100 years ago.

Montessori classes are mixed-age classes where children of different ages work independently at their own level of progression either at tables or by doing work on floor-mats. Older children help the younger ones by setting examples of how to use the learning materials and equipment and by modelling classroom behaviour.

Children choose an apparatus to work on and move freely in the prepared environment. The apparatus are carefully designed for progressive learning; children learn and master one skill before moving on to the next. Teachers help the children when instruction is needed and children choose freely from five areas; E.P.L. (Experiment in Practical Life), Sensorial, Language (Japanese and English), Mathematics, and Culture (botany, geography, history, and science).

E.P.L. activities assist children in mastering life skills, helping them to gain independence with a minimum of adult assistance. These activities are often familiar to children — they have observed adults doing them and they try to imitate the adult. The teachers’ duties are to watch the children carefully and guide them.

Children absorb content from their environment first unconsciously and then consciously through contact with their surroundings and with the use of the senses: smell, taste, visual, auditory, and muscular. After children experience the sensorial apparatus, it helps them to develop their mathematical mind.

Mathematics is part of the child’s world and it is also much more than numbers. Dr. Maria Montessori developed a special method of teaching children to understand qualities such as size, weight, measurement, height, and comparison, to name a few.

Language is taught using a step-by-step approach. The Montessori strategy uses reading to teach children basic alphabet letter sounds. The method is phonics-based and each piece of apparatus builds on the child’s existing knowledge, which can be nurtured according to the need of each individual child.

The culture area is divided into many different categories. These are the fields of biology, botany, geography, history, and science. Dr. Maria Montessori wanted to support each child in all aspects of cultural learning, starting as young as three years. This helps children to develop their personality, to adopt their own culture, to strengthen their sense of independence, and to become a valued member of society.

Parents interested in ABC Montessori International should first attend an open house event or arrange to visit the school, and then attend an interview with the school head before submitting an application form.

Monthly tuition is ¥150,000. ABC also provides before and after school care to support working parents, from 8–9:15am and from 2:15–5:30pm at a cost of ¥750 for 30 minutes.

For more information, see, email [email protected], or call 03-5797-1359. — ROHELLE IINO

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