Nestled in the quiet residential streets of Lane Cove, Lane Cove Montessori Academy has been carving out a reputation of excellence since opening in 2013.
Following Doctor Maria Montessori’s educational curriculum, the team at Lane Cove believe every child can reach their full potential when given the correct materials and environment to grow, and they have dedicated the past five years to preparing young children for the challenges of school and beyond.
The 40-place campus has become very popular with local families, with many parents waitlisting their children from birth, knowing that the unique Montessori educational program is an unmissable first step in their educational journey.
In our latest campus profile, Lane Cove Centre Manager, Amber Zaidi discusses their current curriculum projects and why her team is one of the best in the business..
Can you let us know what makes the team at Lane Cove Montessori Academy so special?
At Lane Cove, we’re not just a team, we’re a family. We’ve been lucky enough to work together as a core team of educators since opening, so we understand each other’s strengths and weaknesses, allowing us to support each other and work productively each day.
I enjoy being both the Centre Manager and the Educational Leader at Lane Cove, and I am always available for both parents and educators to come and discuss aspects of our curriculum or centre programs. It’s amazing how much I talk in a day, and also the variety of topics I cover in my conversations!
Supporting me in my role are a team of ten educators, who are led by three experienced and passionate Room Leaders. As an established team, we have built a strong rapport with our community, and we have begun to welcome
the siblings of children who attended several years ago, a credit to our strong educational foundations.
How many classrooms do you have?
At our campus we have three classrooms, which are divided into a Infants room (for children aged 0 – 2), a Toddler room (ages 2 – 3), and the Preschool room (children aged 3 – 5). This division allows us to carefully design each classroom environment to specifically cater for these students.
The children enjoy time as a campus community during outdoor play time, where they share an area (pictured above) which is equip with climbing frames, a sandpit, jumping logs and other gross motor engaging activities.
I love watching the relationships between the Toddler and Preschooler students develop, the natural diversity of their ages helps them learn from one another, as they begin to respect and care for others who are different from themselves.
Doctor Maria Montessori recognises the benefits of mixed -age groupings, stating that “you cannot imagine how well a young child learns from an older child; how patient the older child is with the difficulties of the younger.”
What culture project are you currently working on?
Lane Cove, like many Sydney suburbs, is a very multicultural community, and this is reflected at our campus. We are excited to celebrating our diversity on Harmony Day this week, which calls on our nation to recognise that although we have differences, we are all Australians!
To commemorate this day, we will be partnering with our families to run cultural cooking lessons with our students throughout the week, introducing the students to new flavours and cuisines.
This activity is an extension of the Toddler’s Room healthy eating project, which has encouraged the children by linking the food to colours and creativity. Each day the children enjoy matching their morning and afternoon tea snacks to different colours on their healthy eating rainbow, and this has resulted in many students asking their parents to pack a variety of different foods, which has been a great outcome.
Finally, what is your student’s favourite circle time activity?
Every day after outdoor play time the Preschool class enjoys focusing with music and song. This gives them time to settle before moving on to Montessori activities and group time, and also helps create a strong classroom community, as the students share in a common activity.
Music is an essential part of the educational curriculum at Montessori Academy, as it encourages children to experiment and be creative through movement, teaching them to respond to the different moods and quality.
In particular it has been strengthening the teamwork of the preschool class, as they have been working on singing the National Anthem in unison.