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Christ the King School debuts transitional kindergarten

08.30.2012 | Larchmont Chronicle | Jane Gilman

Christ the King Catholic School is inaugurating the first transitional kindergarten in the Los Angeles Diocese.  “We are adopting the Montessori method,” said Ruth Anderson, principal of the elementary school at 617 N. Arden Blvd.

Anderson, a native of Ireland, said her first teaching experience in her home country was as a Montessori teacher.

The kindergarten class is for four- to five-year-olds to get them ready for the older kindergarten. “It encourages independent learning,” said Anderson. The method, founded by Maria Montessori in 1907 in Italy, involves constant interaction, problem solving, child-to-child teaching and socialization. Children are challenged according  to their ability.

Montessori materials let the students learn at their own pace. They learn to tie bows, unbutton buttons and lace shoes. Other materials are used to teach arithmetic and geography. The youngsters learn the alphabet by tracing letters.

Shannon Holeva, who is beginning her sixth year as a kindergarten teacher at the school, is excited about the program. The children will be learning how to build words and put them into sentences. “This is among the methods that prepare them for the next level,” she added.

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