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Wednesday February 28, 2018

Preschoolers love their new outdoor space in Wilton

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Evan Charles, Florence Wall, and Frank and Anna Dixon enjoying their new outdoor space. PHOTO: Julia Czerwonatis By Julia Czerwonatis

Montessori at Otari Preschool in Wilton invited their whanau to celebrate the opening of their brilliant new outdoor space on a stunning Friday afternoon, on February 16. “We have been fundraising madly for the last few years to fund the upgrade of our garden and outdoor space,” staff member Nicola Clark says. “The children absolutely love it and really embraced the space immediately.” The little playground is designed for all weather conditions with lots of shady spots and little dry and hidden corners in case a wet weather front hits Wilton. Nicola says parents and children came to help out a lot during the construction process and as a result, the playground is a community-owned space. The Montessori preschool caters for children aged three to six and currently teaches 48 kids. “The idea of a Montessori school is to create a holistic learning space where children can explore their environment physically, emotionally, academically and socially,” centre leader Florence Coram-Lasnier explains. “It’s about meeting the needs of every child

and creating a classroom where everybody can thrive. “We also have mixed age groups to encourage peer learning and develop the children’s confidence and competence.” Parent Richard Wall sends his daughter Florence here and is also president of the Parents Council who work together with the staff to decide how the preschool is operated and what the children should learn. “The Montessori philosophy resonates with my ideas about education. It’s a child-centred space and the community around the preschool is just great,” Richard says. “It’s not just about educating children but creating little human beings that are ready for the world.” Stefanie Dixon is sending her second child to the preschool and says both her kids started to blossom after joining Montessori Wilton. “They suddenly became little people when they started to come here,” Stefanie says. “It’s great that we have a practical learning approach here. “The new outdoor space is a great asset for all the kids. If my son could learn outside all day every day, he certainly would.”

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Independent Herald 28-02-18  

Independent Herald 28-02-18

Independent Herald 28-02-18  

Independent Herald 28-02-18