“One of the greatest mistakes of our day is to think of movement by itself, as something apart from the higher functions…Mental development must be connected with movement and be dependent on it. It is vital that educational theory and practice should become informed by this idea.” - Maria Montessori
Recent brain research has confirmed what Montessori has always known - that movement and activity are essential to the learning process. Coordination of large and fine motor skills is perfected, and scientists have confirmed the link between activity and the development of the intellect. The freedom to move in the classroom, to work on the floor or outdoors rather than being restricted to sitting for long periods of time at a desk, has always been a Montessori distinction from traditional education. Whether it was the hands of the child manipulating beautiful pieces of material or creating handwork, to Primary children walking on the line or elementary students participating in team games, movement is essential to the development of the whole child. Movement and physical activity helps to create peaceful children.
Children's House children participate in weekly physical education classes to strengthen their balance, hand-eye coordination, tactile awareness, directionality and agility. Cooperative games strengthen the classroom community and encourage the spirit of good sportsmanship.
In the elementary program, the overall objective is to provide students with the skills, knowledge and attitudes necessary to make active living a way of life. Cooperation, fair play, sportsmanship, communication and respect are emphasized at all times and coupled with lessons on wellness. Some area that are covered include: cooperative games, throwing, passing (with hands and feet), catching, spatial/body awareness, principles of offense and defense, general fitness activities/games, nutrition, sleep, and stress management.