The following programs are incorporated naturally into each child’s program, with extracurricular activities offered to supplement learning.
Science, Engineering, and Math
Students at all ages, even Toddlers, learn and practice the concepts of science, engineering, and math. Maria Montessori ingeniously built learning materials and activities that introduce complex mathematical, engineering, and scientific thinking at the very earliest ages. Toddlers work with fractions, preschoolers work on algebraic thinking, Elementary students apply mathematics to engineering. All students are introduced early to observation and the scientific method.
In a Montessori classroom, these lessons don't look like they do in a conventional school. Hands-on materials are essential to the learning, rather than abstract problems in a workbook or textbook. We encourage parents to talk with their student's teachers and attend Parent Education Nights to learn more about these curricular areas.
Technology - Computer Instruction
Elementary students use tablets or computers as a valuable tool for work and research. All Lower Elementary classrooms are equipped with iPads, and Upper Elementary classrooms are equipped with Chromebooks for the students. Students with specific learning challenges use computers at an earlier age when it is determined necessary to support their learning. Computer-use guidelines are in place and use is carefully monitored. Montessori education, and MIR, approach technology according to the recommendations of the American Academy of Pediatrics.
MIR offers Elementary Math Games and Elementary Makerspace as extracurricular activities three times a year. These activities allow children to explore math and engineering concepts while having a lot of fun.
Physical Education and Athletics
Students of all ages receive some form of physical education daily and one yoga class per week. The type and duration of physical education is determined on a program-by-program basis. Students learn sports skills; learn about health and nutrition; and participate in cooperative, team-building games.
Yoga instruction is offered weekly to all students. Students engage in movement, balance, stretching, and breathing activities that teach body control, discipline, and calming techniques.
- Elementary Running Club -- Running club meets every Friday morning at 7:30 a.m. Elementary students ages 6 and older are welcome to join, as are their parents. The Running Club participates in the Mt. SAC Cross Country Invitational each year.
- Elementary Bike Club -- Bike club meets every Wednesday at 7:30 a.m. Students ages 8 and older improve their riding skills and learn road safety and bike maintenance.
- Soccer -- Children ages 4 and older can participate in 8-week soccer camps, which are offered three times a year.
- Sportball -- Children ages 3-6 can learn sports fundamentals by participating in 8-week Sportball camps, which are offered three times a year.
MIR works with local providers to offer after-school athletics to students ages 3 and older. They require additional registration and fees. Athletics offered include:
- Elementary Dance for Elementary students ages 6-12
- Soccer for Primary students ages 4-6 and Elementary students ages 6-12
- Sportball for Primary students ages 3-6
Applied and Performing Arts
Applied and performing arts are an integral part of Montessori learning and of every student's studies at MIR. Students receive instruction in:
- Music fundamentals (all ages)
- Dramatic arts (Primary and Elementary)
- Fine arts (Primary and Elementary
Elementary students in our after-school program have lots of opportunities to participate in music, arts, and Spanish activities. All Elementary students have the opportunity to sign up for Elementary Dance, which performs at the annual Holiday Sing.
In addition to these activities, local music teacher Yang Steinke offers piano and strings instruction on campus at MIR before and after school. Arrangements must be made directly with Ms. Steinke. Contact the MIR office for details.
MIR strives to incorporate language and culture into the learning process for the purpose of building a world community. The goals of MIR's Spanish program are
- Communication: Through immersive activities, students learn to speak, comprehend, and read Spanish.
- Cultural literacy: Students learn about the many varied cultures of Spanish speaking peoples through exposure to the arts, literature, and music of these countries.
A dedicated teacher leads our Spanish language program, working with students in formal activities and working with teachers to infuse Spanish into the environment. Weekly whole- or small-group lessons introduce Spanish language concepts or repeat a concept in Spanish given by the Montessori teacher.
Music, art, gardening, and cooking are incorporated into the program, and students must access their Spanish to join in the fun. The teacher also interacts with the students informally in Spanish daily.
Upper Elementary students venture out on a Spanish field trip to the Riverside Art Museum to see relevant exhibits. During the field trip, they have lunch at local landmark Tio's Tacos and are required to order and handle the monetary transaction in Spanish for real-world practice.
In Toddler and Primary classes that have adults who are native Spanish speakers, the adults will often give group Spanish lessons and/or speak in Spanish to the students for some of the day.