Our kindergarten has existed since 2007, back when it was called “Noah’s arc”. Over the years we have worked hard in order to develop our educational program which contains many elements from the Montessori school. In accordance with this, we have obtained teaching materials and equipped our facilities according to the highest standards of Montessori pedagogy. In March 2016 we have officially re-registered with the Ministry of Education as a preschool institution under the name “Deciji vrt”.
We currently have one institution that’s equipped according to the latest global standards, including a large yard where we carry out various preschool activities. We are planning to expand our premises by opening another institution nearby.
We are located in a nature-rich ambiance with an open-air classroom, a yard and an orchard of 23 acres. At out kindergarten the children have the opportunity to live in accordance with nature, but also their own development needs and interests. Physical, social and symbolic dimensions of our space supports exploration, interaction between the kids and also the kids and adults, participating in various activities and the feeling of belonging which is important for young children.
Child – future grownup
In our work, we use an approach that’s aimed at social relations. This approach allows us to see the child as someone who constructs their own development by participating in their community. Every child has a wealth of potential within them and they develop in a unique way. Play, as the main motivator for development, satisfies their need for exploration which is the main part of their life. This is why we have provided countless way for the children to explore, discover, experiment, reach conclusions, play and live with nature surrounding them at our kindergarten.
The children shape their learning by actively participating in meaningful common interactions with both adults and peers through various activities. Children have their own opinions and observations and are able to express them. What changes in time is the way they express themselves. It’s very important to listen to your child, understand their thoughts and ideas, support their further development, enable them to check their assumptions and understand the scientific background of all their activities.
By acknowledging the child’s needs and interests we teach them to respect the needs and interests of others through interactive activities that we plan and organize together. This way we don’t neglect the aesthetic or moral or intellectual or work education but we gave each the chance to influence the overall shaping of a multifaceted personality that is going through one of the most tumulus stadiums of development – childhood.
Child – a person of nature
A child is a part of nature and we believe that a child’s contact with nature will have a productive effect on their development Through such contact the child will understand the laws of nature and learn to uphold them. This is why at our kindergarten we learn ecology through life. Since the earliest age children spend time in the orchard and learn about natural cycles, relations between plants, animals and man. Children know very well that food doesn’t come from a box or plastic bag, but rather from the fields, barns, fields, rivers, seas. We taught them this by giving them a chance to directly participate in planting and caring for plants, recycling paper, plastics and metal, storing organic waste into compost which is then used to fertilize the garden. Life in harmony with nature also influences the children’s social development because it encourages responsibility and conscientiousness. Responsible children one day grow up to become responsible adults.
Children of today don’t have enough contact with nature. We derived our methods from recognizing this need for nature in children. If we watch a child during their leisurely moments, we see that they have a natural need to move, explore and learn and every child is unique in how they do that. Spending their days in our yard (between 2-6 hours a day) has a positive impact on overall development, especially physical (which is based on all forms of movement) that’s also linked closely with the intellectual (developing brain synapses), social, emotional and speech development. Touch of nature can especially reflect on the children’s health, their locomotor, respiratory, digestive and cardiovascular systems.
Help me do it myself
The program of our preschool institution was approved by the Ministry of Education and contains the elements of Montessori pedagogy which revolves around the child, their abilities and need for independence, learning, freedom and love. Our program is based on the legalities of optimal development that was established by Maria Montessori. Seeing how emphasis in the 21st century is on helping the child become independent, obtaining life skills and preparing for life, the means we use are conductive to independent learning through practical manipulation.
In accordance with the work program we opted for and their elements, we have equipped our institution with the latest materials in the Montessori program and the space where the children spend time is arranged to suit the demands and principles of Montessori pedagogy.
Maria Montessori has created and designed a system of sensory education, based on practical activities and planned exercises. Two main method of Montessori involve: awakening self-activity and self respect in the child. The program of work that we realize at our institution supports these methods and the belief that the child only needs proper encouragement and that their own experience is the best teacher.
Having all the required materials, teaching equipment, exterior and interior arrangement shows how seriously we take our work program and our attitude about educating a child in the 21st century. In our institution there is everything a child need to optimally grow according to their potential.
Our program supports the humanistic approach to education and is a part of all-around educational influences on the child since birth to starting school.