"Play is the highest form of research". Albert Einstein
Our Curriculum at Hilltop Academy
Hilltop Academy offers a unique blend of Montessori and Play-Based curriculum. This is achieved by using the main categories of Montessori as detailed below, but implementing these in a more play-based experience. We aim to provide the children in our setting with the most hands on learning experience using real life materials and resources. Curriculum planning is something we here at Hilltop Academy take great pride in and have a great passion for. This Curriculum planning will created a unique learning experience for the children and will support all individual’s needs, abilities and interests. This curriculum will support, encourage and motivate the children to become active learners and gain control of directing their own learning and development. Here at Hilltop Academy we have a huge passion for the great outdoors; we aim to provide children in our service as much time as possible exploring out natural outdoor play area.
The Montessori Method of education, developed by Dr. Maria Montessori, is a child-centered educational approach based on scientific observations of children from birth to adulthood. Dr. Montessori’s Method has been time tested, with over 100 years of success in diverse cultures throughout the world. It is a view of the child as one who is naturally eager for knowledge and capable of initiating learning in a supportive, thoughtfully prepared learning environment. It is an approach that values the human spirit and the development of the whole child—physical, social, emotional, cognitive.
The teacher, child, and environment create a learning triangle. The classroom is prepared by the teacher to encourage independence, freedom within limits, and a sense of order. The child, through individual choice, makes use of what the environment offers to develop himself, interacting with the teacher when support and/or guidance is needed.
Play based curriculum allows children choose activities based on their current interests. The play-based classroom is broken up into sections, such as a role play area, construction area, water and sand table, quiet corner, messy play area and outdoor area; Teachers encourage the kids to play, facilitating social skills along the way. “Even though it seems like they are just playing, they are learning valuable skills, including important social skills and cooperation with others.
Here at Hilltop Academy we use a blend of these curriculums mentioned above, we feel that this is the most beneficial way for children to strive in their prepared learning environment. We also believe that this unique blend of curriculums will cater to all individual children's needs, abilities and interests no matter what their learning style.