The Three R’s of Boardwalk Montessori classrooms are Respect, Responsibility and Resourcefulness. We value and nurture these qualities in ourselves and in the children. We believe in teaching the children to respect themselves, each other and their environment. We encourage them to be responsible and to be good problem-solvers. The Three R’s prepare them to be happy, fulfilled and well-balanced human beings who are valued members of a community.
The cornerstone of our classroom is respect. We encourage the children to respect each other’s personal space so that everyone in the classroom can feel comfortable and safe. We encourage the children to be respectful of others. If a child needs the teacher’s help and the teacher is busy, we ask him to put a hand on our shoulder and wait until we are free to help him. This form of respect promotes both patience and independence. In the waiting, the child will sometimes decide that he can solve the problem on his own.
We believe that the classroom belongs to the teachers and the children. Therefore, we show the children how to be responsible for their environment by putting their own work away, taking care of the plants, cleaning up spills, cleaning tables and shelves and keeping things in order. As teachers, we model appropriate speech by speaking to the children and each other respectfully. The children learn, “Could you please let me do my own work?” rather than “Go away!”. “Excuse me, please.” rather than pushing past two children. This form of respect happens in little ways every day. The older children are skilled at helping the younger ones resolve conflicts. We encourage the children to be resourceful and figure things out by themselves. There is nothing more rewarding than to hear a child say, “I did it myself”. Their feeling of pride shows on their face and in their walk and results in them relating in positive ways with those around them.
As we guide the children through their four years with us (Toddler and 3 year Casa Program), we watch them become leaders in their third Casa year. We watch them become good problem-solvers, both with the materials and with each other. We watch them become responsible members of our school. As the children go out into the community, it is our wish that they will be respectful, responsible and resourceful human beings.