“How do I do this?” a three-year old boy, a new student, asked a four-year old girl, returning to the preschool classroom for her second year. “I can show you!” she exclaimed with joy. They proceeded to explore the geometric solids from the sensorial area. The girl introduced the boy to the shapes and proudly taught him how to play the “What’s Missing?” game. They continued to enjoy the work together and were later seen choosing other works together, as well as playing together at recess time.
In the Montessori environment, we see so many benefits to having a multi-age classroom. Returning students have a chance to practice leadership skills while building confidence. New students are fortunate to be surrounded by many helpful peer mentors. Children often learn best from one another. This year we have a balance of new and returning students and have already seen so many wonderful connections between older and younger children.