Extended Primary (XP)/Kindergarten Program
The Extended Primary/Kindergarten (XP) program is designed for the oldest Primary children at Children’s Garden. In this final year of the Children’s Garden program, children have developed confidence, a full foundation of Montessori early learning, a sense of accomplishment and serve as models for younger children.
The XP/Kindergarten children attend from 8:15 AM to 2:45 PM; they spend the morning in a mixed age primary class until lunchtime, at which time these oldest children from the primary classrooms join together for a time before the afternoon mixed-age session.
This smaller group of just older children allows for more complex, advanced, age appropriate exploration of each of the Montessori areas. They may spend afternoons reading long chapter books out loud, taking walks and learning about the Cherry Creek neighborhood, as well as eagerly exploring reading, writing, mathematical calculations, geography, science and art. Five and six year-olds enjoy working together, so we give them additional time in Zach’s Place (studio) so that they may collaborate on larger open-ended projects of their own design. To capitalize on the developmental benefits to both our oldest and youngest children at Children’s Garden we may invite one XP/K child at a time to assist in our toddler program.
To join the Extended Primary/Kindergarten class, a child should be entering their Kindergarten year or their 3rd year of the Primary program. Exceptions for younger children who are at least 4 1/2 years by August 31, have been in a Montessori pre-school program, and have a teacher recommendation may be considered for the class if space allows. Children who are 5 years old and those entering their 3rd year of the Primary cycle have priority.
Montessori Kindergarten: Essential and Empowering This short video from the American Montessori Society illustrates a Montessori Kindergarten: