Shady Oaks Montessori

Primary : Developing a Love for Learning

3 - 6 Years Old

“The most important period of life is not the age of university studies but the period from birth to the age of six.” – Dr. Maria Montessori

Dr. Montessori recognized that education begins at birth and continues throughout life. We prepare your child for life – not ‘school’.

Child Centered:

We put your child at the center of their own individualized education. Montessori education truly ‘follows the child’. We recognize the uniqueness of your child and follow their interests while allowing them to work at their own pace. Their internal motivation becomes the compass to guide their life!

A Prepared Environment:

The Primary environment is rich with opportunities for your child. It is prepared with your child in mind and is developmentally appropriate. Children learn best by doing and are drawn to the materials which support their interests. The scientifically developed, hands-on materials include self-help (practical life) activities to aid their independence and sensorial activities that help them make sense of the world. In addition, we have math, language, geography, botany, music and art activities that are without equal. The primary environment is not about memorization. Rather, your child’s conceptual understanding is formed through their interactions with didactic materials which convey instruction and information as well as enjoyment.

Mixed Ages including Kindergarten:

“The first year they sleep, the second year they creep, the third year they leap!” We have multiage classes that encompass a 3 year age span of 3, 4, and 5 year olds. Social and emotional development is aided in similar ways as having siblings in the family. Younger children observe and are inspired by the older children’s activities. Older children grow in self-confidence, responsibility and exercise leadership skills. The seeds planted in the first 2 years of Primary begin to come to life in the Kindergarten year. Kindergarten children continue to explore the curriculum learning to read, write in cursive, explore numbers and the decimal system, investigate geometrical figures and study the countries in each continent.

The 3 Hour Uninterrupted Work Period:

A hallmark of Montessori education, your child will be able to choose what they want to explore and for how long. Engagement helps them grow in their ability to focus and concentrate over extended periods of time. Children enjoy being able to complete their activities rather than being frustrated by having to put them away when they are just getting started.

Grace and Courtesy:

Another hallmark of Montessori is the respect that they develop for the other children and their classroom. It can be something as simple as how to open and close a door or greet the teacher in the morning.
A. T.Primary Parent of 4 y.o.
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“I can’t praise Shady Oaks enough. The children are amazing. They show compassion for each other (instead of bullying). They are curious about what other children are learning. They also get 1:1 attention when learning a new activity. The teachers are highly trained…the atmosphere is almost like family and everyone is so kind!”
S. B.Primary Parent
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“Our son is in his second year at Shady Oaks and we couldn’t be happier…It’s a very clean, organized and peaceful environment. (Yes, a preschool can be peaceful!) He enjoys lessons on everything from math to learning manners. We love how independent he’s become and are so impressed.”

Look into the eyes of our Shady Oaks children and you will see they are alive, eager to learn more, and joyfully confident.

I'm Growing Up!

I can be independent and take care of myself and help others. I can make sense of my world. I can communicate well with others and express myself through the written word. My mathematical mind has been supported in a way that leads to logical thought.

Montessori gives the child of the first plane of development (ages 0-6) the “keys” to the world! Around 6 years, your child will crossover into the second plane of development (ages 6 to 12). Montessori now offers children the “keys” to the universe as they are able to imagine things the young child in the first plane cannot comprehend. After their time in Primary, your child will be ready to move up to our ELEMENTARY PROGRAM for 6-12 year old children.

Primary Program: Multi-age class including Kindergarten, Up to 24 children, 2 Teachers

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Jenny Williams, Lead Primary Guide

Jenny is married and the mother of two children, the step-mother of two children, and the grandmother of 4 children. She has been working in the Children’s House at Shady Oaks Montessori since 1993. Jenny received her AMI Montessori Diploma in 2003 from the St. Louis Montessori Institute. She also has an AA degree in Early Childhood Studies from Shasta College. Jenny enjoys spending time with her family, at family gatherings and in her garden.

Why Montessori? “When I first started working at Shady Oaks, I found it to be very helpful to me personally. I wish I had the opportunity all the children are getting; I don’t think learning would have been such a struggle for me. Now this is where my heart and soul are. I have been able to grow and blossom over the years as I see the children doing every day.”

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Christina Sanderson, Primary Guide

Christina was born right here in Shasta County and was raised in a large Italian family which instilled in her that love and respect are the foundation of our lives. Walking through the front door of the Children’s House at Shady Oaks in 1997 she immediately felt at home witnessing the gentleness from the staff, and the pure joy on the children’s faces when completing a simple task such as buttoning their own shirt or pouring their own glass of water. She realized Montessori is where she needed to be. For more than 20 years Shady Oaks truly has been her home away from home as she assisted in the Primary Classrooms and also pioneered the Infant Program at Shady Oaks. Christina holds an AA degree in Early Childhood Education from Shasta College. She completed her Montessori Teacher Training Program from North American Montessori Center (NAMC). She enjoys camping and league bowling.

Why Montessori? “I truly feel that every child deserves to be treated with dignity and respect. Children are beautifully unique individuals with many different interests. Our program encourages this individuality and independence and we strive to nurture these wonderful little humans to be the best that they can be.”

Christina is assisted by Emmaline Robertson.

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Divya Patel, Primary Guide

Divya grew up in Redding, CA, and her Indian culture instilled respect for others, valuing the needs of a community over her own, loyalty to elders and working independently. She holds a degree in Child Psychology from San Jose State University and from the start Divya knew she had a passion for working with young children. Along with English, Divya fluently speaks three other languages, Gujarati, Hindi, and Punjabi. Divya’s hobbies include swimming, boxing, biking, sports, and music. Divya has her AMI Primary Montessori certification through Montessori Northwest in Portland, Oregon, along with a Masters of Education from Whitworth University.

Why Montessori? “When I first started working as an assistant in a Primary Class at Shady Oaks, what stood out was how independently a child works throughout the day. I was drawn to the Montessori classroom because of how all the materials are connected with each other. The fascination of how the materials connect to the growth of the child is what led me to pursue my AMI training. Montessori gives the child an opportunity for hands-on learning through an environment that accommodates their natural development.”

Divya is assisted by Kris Carbin.

Becca Duncan, Primary Guide

Becca Duncan was raised in Phoenix, AZ. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Early Childhood Education from the Grand Canyon University in Phoenix, Arizona and received her Montessori training at Southwest Institute of Montessori Studies in Mesa, AZ. Becca is Montessori trained in both 0-3 and 3-6 year old classrooms and has been working with Montessori for 10 years. Before landing in Redding California, Becca has lived and worked in Florida and Australia.

Why Montessori? “I believe that Montessori is an amazing way of learning. Growing up with learning disabilities, school was hard but when I found Montessori I fell in love with learning again. I want to be able to share that love of learning with the families that I encounter. Being able to see a child fall in love with learning is an amazing thing. I believe that I see that through the Montessori education.”

Becca is assisted by Misty Yoder

Primary Program Hours

Monday – Friday 7:30am – 3:00pm

Schedule an Observation Today!

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