Children are always busy at Stepping Stones! Each day begins with a morning meeting known as Circle Time where the children are seated around a large round rug to sing a special song to greet each other. Circle Time is for laughing, sharing, learning new lessons, calendar, and weather. After Circle Time children take part in work time when they may choose to work alone or in small groups. Teachers offer small group activities and one-on-one lessons. Six different areas in the carefully-prepared classroom environment include:
* Practical Life * Sensorial * Math * Language * Science/Geography * Art *
Stepping Stones' classroom is full of exciting materials designed to engage students as they explore their own interests, curiosities, and needs. Inherent traits such as confidence, security, creativity and happiness are nurtured as students learn and grow in an environment where they feel safe, respected, and loved -- and as a result, learning becomes fun! At Stepping Stones we strive to create a balance of fun and learning where the PROCESS of creating and learning is valued. Our goal is to help children build a foundation for the future based on a love of learning and an appreciation for others in and out of the classroom environment. Stepping Stones students learn the importance of taking care of each other, their school community, the Ithaca community, and planet Earth.
In addition to an inspiring classroom curriculum, Stepping Stones children have a unique opportunity to get to know their community! Walking field trips to Buffalo Street Books, DeWitt Park, and the Farmer's Market are just a few of the activities students enjoy weekly. Stepping Stones children also enjoy visits from local entertainers and educators such as Mrs McPuppet, Cornell outreach programs, and the Ithaca Fire Department. Two field trips each year to local areas of interest include Cornell Orchards and the Ithaca Children’s Garden.
Stepping Stones children will graduate with strong social and academic foundations and the tools necessary for building character, friendship, kindness, and community. Each child will learn the value of giving and receiving from one another and, in turn, become more empathetic, graceful, and aware. Stepping Stones teachers believe in nurturing each child's individual spirit and fostering a "can do" attitude.
Stepping Stones students learn the importance of respecting the natural environment and sustainability by...
“Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment.
Stepping Stones Montessori
Your child's journey begins here...
Planting, tending, and watching food grow inspires students to try new food while getting their hands dirty! Our playground garden instills a farm-to-table ideology for students as they weed and water their way to delicious snacks fresh from Mother Earth.
Students learn the importance of giving to others each November through our school's annual food drive -- a small gesture with big returns for preschoolers who feel empowered and thankful for being able to share the gift of food with children in our community. The non-perishable food collected directly benefits families of Bevery J. Martin students.
Taking care of the Earth.
Taking care of the community.
"I am really, truly in awe of all that you are teaching the children. It's amazing. Thank you for keeping us informed via the newsletter because I don't hear much from my daughter at the end of the day when I ask her how school was. I never imagined the extent of what they are learning about the world, the animals that populate it, famous artist, etc... It blows me away. The kids don't know how incredibly fortunate they are to be getting such a dynamic foundation. I wish I could spend my days at Stepping Stones vs. work. I'd get so much more out of my days."