Ages: 12-14 | Grades 7-8
Because Montessori education is individualized, students move to the middle school when they have mastered defined cognitive, physical, and social skills and are prepared to succeed at that level.
Mon – Fri: 8:00 a.m. – 3:00 p.m.
Dr. Montessori’s innovative approach to adolescent education is embodied in the Chemung Valley Montessori Middle School, located in its own unique house near the main campus. Students build community and global awareness through collaborative research, team projects, group problem-solving and decision-making, shared meals and celebrations, environmental stewardship, and service to others. A rigorous, integrated academic curriculum encourages abstract thinking, creative expression, effective communication, and real-word exploration.
Outcomes – Our goal is to graduate students who have a sense of their own capabilities, a passion for learning, and compassion for their community and world. To that end we provide an environment that is designed to meet adolescents’ needs for intellectual stimulation, emotional stability, physical development, and support for their passage to adulthood. CVMS Middle School graduates enter high school with self-confidence, self-discipline, leadership, citizenship, and scholarship.
Curriculum – The core middle school curriculum is based on New York State standards in all subject areas. Experiential learning continues to be important, as Montessori adolescents solve real-world problems, build models, conduct experiments, engage in debates, and present plays and musical performances. Extracurricular studies include rich programs in Spanish, art, music, and physical education. Middle school students receive individual instruction in the musical instrument of their choice, are members of the CVMS band, jazz band, and chorus, and compete in area cross-country and swim meets. Creativity, critical thinking, problem-solving, independence, personal responsibility, and a wider world view are woven through students’ daily experience.
Throughout the year, students are asked to complete a variety of self-selected projects in composition and core subjects. To facilitate this, their weekly schedule includes blocks of time to pursue their independent studies. In addition, CVMS provides middle school students with opportunities for student governance, the chance to run a student business, and exploration of potential careers through local internships and community service.
Rich Learning Experiences – The middle school addresses some of the growing needs, interests, and capabilities of adolescents through several additional activities. We provide frequent opportunities for outdoor education through vegetable gardening, off-site farm work, outdoor maintenance, and trail work on the CVMS Nature Preserve near the main campus. We ensure that students develop computer literacy as a tool for research, writing, organization, and presentation, regularly using Word, Excel, PowerPoint, and Inspiration software programs.
As part of the Middle School Business Project students follow a business model to research, design, and market a product and run their own small business; they learn valuable skills and the proceeds benefit the school community. Visits to workplaces give students a chance to explore future career possibilities. Our students also undertake service learning projects in ways that are meaningful to the greater community. And of course, true to the Montessori philosophy, students incorporate life skills into their daily routine. They plan, prepare and serve meals, keep the classroom clean, maintain the yard and gardens, solve problems, and make decisions.
Teacher’s Role – Our middle school teachers serve as advisors to each student and share responsibility for the academic subject areas. Each teacher has specialist background in the subjects she teaches. Other CVMS faculty members also work with students on homework and independent study projects.
For more detailed information, please see our parent handbook.