About The Program

Dr. Maria Montessori, the founder of Montessori philosophy, believed education was the most powerful and universal way through which to reconstruct society. It is necessary to think of education as peace, not education for peace.

While our curriculum teaches about peace, it cannot by itself result in peace. As Montessori teachers, we realize that it is not enough to simply talk about peace. We must create an environment that will promote the development of peaceful individuals. We cannot create this peaceful environment if we ourselves are interacting negatively or competitively with others. As followers of Christ, we believe that we lead in a manner and  create an environment in which the children thrive and find peace because Jesus is the Prince of Peace.

“Children do not need to learn how to use their imaginations, but they do need to learn how to work, and how to care for their environment.”

Maria Montessori

Since 2016, East Lake Montessori has striven to educate the children of New City Fellowship and the neighborhood of East Lake to prepare them for their future. We desire to be a cross-culturally, racially, and economically diverse community that fosters the love of God, love of one another, love of learning and love of work in each child.

With our Legacy Program, ELM provides discounted rates for disadvantaged children to be exposed to a high quality Montessori environment.

By taking a holistic approach to education, ELM endeavors to create opportunities and open doors that will result in neighborhood revitalization, and create empathetic leaders of tomorrow.

Mission Statement

Montessori East Lake strives to educate the children of our church and the neighborhood of East Lake to love learning, love work and love one another. We strive to be a cross-cultural, racially and economically diverse group that fosters integrity, independence and hope in every child.

What is Montessori?

ELM is a fully-inclusive program serving children ages 1-6. Montessori is a proven method of education that encourages self-development and independence in each child. Maria Montessori once said that children do not need to learn how to use their imaginations, but they do need to learn how to work, and how to care for their environment. The method is based on these principles as well as the manipulatives that she developed. The classroom is a prepared environment where lessons are carefully designed to create interest and foster concentration. Freedom of movement and choice are also key elements.

Toddler Classroom (Ages 1-3)

The Toddler Classroom is a joyful space where teachers begin to introduce the Montessori concepts, but still prioritizes gross motor play, fun, and curiosity. They follow their own schedule as needed. The day consists of a shorter lesson time of 1-1.5 hours, group circles with songs and stories, craft, recess, group play and socialization, and snack. There is an extra recess in the morning, weather permitting. Children at this age are incredibly sensitive to language, so English and Spanish are introduced to prepare them for language proficiency. The Toddler Program is available on Tuesday and Thursday.

Preschool/Kindergarten Classroom (Ages 3-6)

Children in the Preschool/Kindergarten classroom will be immersed in the Montessori curriculum. The Montessori curriculum is designed to provide foundational building blocks for literacy, math, and a variety of cultural studies, while fostering an environment of independence and creativity. Children must be fully potty trained.

The Preschool program is available either two or three days a week. Children must be 3 years old by August 1st, prior to the start of the school year.

The Kindergarten Program is a homeschool support. Children attend Monday-Thursday, satisfying 20 of the 25 weekly hours required by the state. Kindergarten completes the 3-year primary cycle in a Montessori classroom. Please consider this option for your child. They become the leaders of the classroom. They learn to read in a gentle environment shaped to their individual needs.

Admission Process*

Families begin the admissions process by touring our school to find out more about our method and philosophy of education. Montessori is a unique and specialized environment. We have found it best to invite parents to share and experience it themselves in order to give them the best opportunity to consider the program. We politely request no children in attendance.

Upon completion of the tour, we will schedule an individual classroom visit for your child. This time of observation gives you the best view of how our classrooms work, and our teachers a one-on-one opportunity to interact with your child in the classroom setting.

* Toddler admission requires one additional step, “Toddler Phase In.” This is a feature of our program designed to help your child make a positive transition from you to his/her new teacher. Each child must be accompanied by an adult for a minimum of one hour.

After your new child visit, complete and return your application, accompanied by a non-refundable application fee. No child is able to be considered for admission until we have a completed application on file with the application fee.

Enrollment

Once you have completed the admissions process, ELM staff will finalize the steps of enrollment. All completed forms, including an up-to-date medical record, fees, and deposits, must be in the office before a child can begin his/her first day of school.

Families are required to attend the New Student and All Parent Orientations prior to the beginning of the school year.

We enroll students throughout the year as space is available from our waiting list.

General Program Information

Space is limited. We prioritize current families, siblings of current students, church families, and our neighborhood families. East Lake neighbors may apply for the Legacy Rate. Paying families are not required to attend New City East Lake or live in East Lake.

Please contact us to schedule a tour and for current rates.

Toddler Program
(18 mos – 3 yrs)
Preschool Program
(3 yrs – 5 yrs)
Kindergarten
Homeschool Tutorial
Tues/Thurs: 8:30-1pm2x or 3x/wk: 8:30-1pmMon-Thurs: 8:30-1pm

Meet Our Founder: Bethany Lane

In the summer of 2016, a group of church families from New City East Lake and I founded East Lake Montessori. From the beginning, ELM would not have come together without this special group of people.

Prior to founding ELM, I taught at The Montessori School in Chattanooga, TN, for 9 years. I am a certified Montessori Lower Elementary guide. I discovered that I loved education after working in schools in South Africa during my Peace Corps tour from 2004-2006. I have a B.A. from the University of Georgia in Anthropology with African Studies and Women’s Studies certificates.

I live in East Lake with my husband, Micheal, our two daughters, Ruby and Nemi, and our amazing community of fellow East Lakers. Each year, I look forward to rest and renewal on our annual family camping trip to Cumberland Island. I also love hosting large meals with lots of people and children running around the house.


Our kids at work!

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