A New Approach to Catholic EducationJohn Paul the Great Montessori Academy
JPGMA is a Catholic Montessori Academy
Our Academy integrates the Montessori method with the timeless Truths of our Catholic faith in order to lead students toward the Good, the True, and the Beautiful.
We are Catholic first in everything.
Every lesson has one primary objective: help each child in his or her development on the path to heaven. We lay before them Language, the Sciences, History, Art, Music, Math, and Geography. These subjects are presented with the goal that the students come to know themselves and their role in the created world.
- Religion is not just a subject that is taught at JPGMA. Our faculty and staff seek to assist each child in fostering a relationship with God by immersing them in the deepest truths of our Faith. The Atrium with its Catechesis of the Good Shepherd is available for our children to work in daily. Once the child enters the Middle School they are presented with a curriculum focused on the True, the Good, and the Beautiful, as well as Apologetics and Theology of the Body. This is to help better prepare each child to enter today’s culture and set it ablaze with the Truth.
- The Holy Sacrifice of the Mass is the heart of the Academy. Our goal is to have daily mass offered. We are striving to line up Mass at the Academy as much as possible so that the children and Staff may be sustained and centered in the only thing that truly matters in this life: our union and relationship with Jesus Christ.
We have a Catholic Classical Foundation.
National Montessori associations, such as AMI/AMS, have long been the standards for Montessori excellence and an “authentic” Montessori approach. However, JPGMA is casting out “into the deep” of what it means to be an authentic Catholic Montessori Academy from Toddler through High School. AMI/AMS are great training programs but they are limited in terms of fully integrating a Catholic approach to Montessori education.
- At JPGMA, all subjects are presented in the Montessori Approach and are project based, but we are imbuing classical Catholic principles throughout the upper Elementary, Middle School, and emerging High School curriculum. We see this as adding new “materials” to the Montessori environment that will enhance and deepen your child’s education. Each classical addition becomes a modified material that will both respect the individuality of each child and honor the Montessori approach of allowing each child to make it their own.
- For example, we are reshaping the Montessori History curriculum by incorporating the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd timelines from the Atrium into the Academic Environment. As Sofia Cavaletti reflected, the History of Salvation is the history of all peoples and of each person as opposed to the histories that are limited in time and confined to the boundaries of specific countries. History is presented to the child annually in 3 periods: Year 1: B.C. (Creation up to Redemption); Year 2: A,D. (Redemption up to and waiting for Parousia); Year 3; special focus on our State and U.S. History.
- In the area of Language Arts, we are making sure that our Literature and Montessori curriculum are imbued with classical literature and poetry that is rooted in Catholic civilization and culture. We are adding a special emphasis on oration, debate, yearly play productions, and oral presentations by the children.
We are a Montessori Academy.
Each one of our Lead Guides for Primary, Elementary, and Middle School are either trained or in training under the auspices of American Montessori International or North American Montessori Center. All three environments follow and use Montessori Albums and curriculum. Each Lead Guide is also a trained Catechist in the Catechesis of the Good Shepherd.
Our Primary, Elementary, and Middle/High School environments are composed of mixed age groups. Primary is ages 3-6 years, Elementary is ages 6-12 years, and Middle/High School is ages 12-18 years.
- JPGMA has hands-on Montessori materials set up in beautiful and carefully prepared environments. This allows for the children to grow in independence, personal responsibility, and a natural love of learning.
- Our teachers are called “Guides”. This means they work diligently to make sure their environments are well prepared to inspire learning and they are responsible to make sure that each child progresses at their pace and level. The Guides circulate amongst the students, gently inspiring, guiding, and coaching.
- We are a 5 day a week program in accordance with AMI standards. This allows for three hour work periods where you can observe children working and Guides giving individual and small group lessons.
- The children wear uniforms. Uniforms allow for a less distracting environment and shows that we are all a part of something greater than ourselves. We are however allowing our Middle School students 2 days a week to develop their own dress code in accordance with the occupations they are choosing to pursue.