A feeling of home, a focus on peace and the freedom to explore: These are some of the educational hallmarks of Four Corners Montessori Academy, a tuition-free K-8 public school academy located in Madison Heights.
This Oakland County school, which also offers a tuition-based preschool, is committed to the Montessori educational philosophy, which promotes a proven method of instruction designed for all types of learners and has been an established model of education for over 100 years.
“We focus on the whole child here at FCMA. It’s not just about academics. It’s also about a child’s social and emotional well-being,” says Stacy Byrd, Head of School at Four Corners Montessori Academy. “We offer an environment which fosters and encourages individuality.”
At Four Corners Montessori Academy, students work in multiage classrooms that stimulate personal growth without stigma – where teachers are able to best help their students, staying with them for two or three-year periods. In each classroom, children have the freedom to learn based on where they are academically instead of their grade level, while teachers work to challenge them and help them progress at their own pace.
“We work to adapt and modify our lessons as needed, to meet the ever-changing needs of our students,” Byrd explains.
“From the moment you walk through the door,” Byrd says, “you feel at peace.” It’s something that’s important to the staff at Four Corners. The school strives to provide a calm and homelike environment to its students and parents.
“It’s a peaceful environment with a quiet hum of activity in the classrooms,” Byrd continues. In fact, peaceful interactions are an integral part of each child’s curriculum.
“We talk about how to solve conflicts when they arise with others in a respectful way, because we want to prepare our students to be global citizens,” Byrd says.
In order to do this, teachers talk about how to have a discussion and how to invite someone over to talk in a peaceful way about a conflict they may have. In addition, students study real-life world peacemakers.
Students are encouraged to find their own inner peace in “the peace corner,” which is located in each classroom.
As a Michigan Green School, Four Corners involves students, teachers and families to make efforts toward reducing their impact on the environment – and teaching their emerging young people about their world and healthy practices for sustainable living. These efforts are just another way educators are preparing children for a positive future.
“Field studies and in-class presentations related to content the students are learning are frequent occurrences at the school,” Byrd says. “Students can visit the Detroit Institute of Arts and Matthaei Botanical Gardens in Ann Arbor – and, for older students, overnight trips include Chicago and Washington, D.C. These trips and in-class presentations, which include cultural performers, help to bring the curriculum to life for each learner.”
“Four Corners is truly about community. Parents are invited to get involved in their child’s education,” Byrd adds. “Whether it’s attending a field trip or administering spelling tests, we really encourage families to come in and volunteer.”
Four Corners Montessori Academy’s educational program includes:
- Multiage classrooms
- Low student-to-teacher ratios
- Individualized curriculum
- Hands-on learning experiences utilizing Montessori materials
- Character education and peace studies
- State-certified, Montessori-trained teachers
- Student uniform dress code
- All-day kindergarten
Parents interested in enrolling their child or children at Four Corners Montessori Academy can simply fill out an application online. Enrollment typically opens in mid-March; however, families can come and tour the school throughout the school year.
For more information, visit the Four Corners Montessori Academy website.
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