Guidepost Milestones: Developing Independent, Capable, Flourishing Children

A look at some of the key milestones that Guidepost Montessori helps children achieve at each stage in their educational journey.

Right from birth, your child begins embarking on a journey of discovery and growth that is marked by milestones. From sitting up, to walking, to reading and beyond, children conquer each milestone with determination and unwavering support from their caregivers and guides as they progress toward achieving independence.

At Guidepost Montessori, we collaborate closely with parents to create a nurturing and prepared environment where children achieve milestones with confidence and joy, developing an unwavering belief in themselves, that they are capable of achieving whatever they choose to tackle. The focus of our program is to provide the knowledge, confidence, and skills to help the individual child to make the most of their life. 

To do this, school leaders and trained guides (teachers) offer tailored support for the individual child that cultivates a sense of intrinsic motivation, curiosity, and a passion for learning to empower a child’s growing independence. More than childcare centers, our schools are collaborative communities where we work hand in hand with parents to cultivate a holistic educational experience – one that encourages independence and sets a strong foundation for lifelong learning.

In this article, we’ll look at our I Am Capable Milestone Map, which highlights key milestones that infants, toddlers, preschoolers, elementary students and adolescents attain as they progress through the different stages of their personal and educational growth as students at Guidepost Montessori. 

Nido (6 weeks – 18 months) Milestones

In the Nido program (and in Picco, our home-based infant program), milestones are centered around providing a secure and nurturing environment in which infants develop trust in caregivers, form consistent sleep habits, build gross motor skills through movement and exploration, foster early communication skills, and even begin early toilet learning. Our trained guides offer gentle guidance and create an atmosphere of respect and support.

Toddler (18 months – 2.5 years) Milestones

The toddler years are a time of rapid physical, cognitive, and emotional development, laying the foundation for future learning and self-discovery. Key milestones during this period include language development, socialization, and the emergence of self-help skills. In our toddler program, toddlers learn to express themselves verbally, engage in parallel play, and participate in activities that promote concentration and coordination. The Montessori materials and activities that we provide support their burgeoning independence, fostering skills such as dressing, toileting, and eating independently.

Children's House (2.5 years – 6 years) Milestones

The Children's House program marks a significant phase of development where children refine their language skills, develop critical thinking abilities, and hone their fine motor skills. Our Montessori materials and lessons aid in helping children begin learning how to read and write, how to explore scientific phenomena, how to develop mathematical minds, and how to cultivate cultural understanding. During this period, there is significant emphasis on self-directed learning, grace and courtesy, and collaborative work.

Elementary (6 years – 12 years) Milestones

In the elementary program, children delve deeper into their understanding of the world. Milestones include the development of advanced language and abstract thinking skills, and the deep exploration of math, science, history and fine arts. Children engage in research projects, organize “going outs”(carefully planned field trips that connect their learning experiences within the classroom to real-life experiences outside of the classroom), develop their problem-solving abilities, and continue to work both independently and collaboratively as members of their learning community. Elementary students also develop "big work," which is significant and purposeful work that demonstrates their understanding and application of various skills and knowledge. The Montessori elementary curriculum encourages exploration, creativity, and a sense of responsibility and community.

Adolescent (12 years – 18 years) Milestones

At the Academy of Thought and Industry (ATI), our middle and high school program, individual milestones are established through a process of personalized academic planning and goal setting. Rooted in Maria Montessori's educational philosophy, ATI fosters an environment where students are encouraged to be self-directed learners, critical thinkers, and active participants in their educational journey. By prioritizing academic planning, students further develop the essential skills of organization, time management, and goal setting that they will need to succeed beyond their academic careers. Through personalized learning pathways, students are empowered to pursue their passions and delve into subjects that ignite their curiosity.

From our Nido program for infants through the ATI program for adolescents, our team is committed to helping your child achieve key milestones and flourish in a supportive environment. By celebrating these milestones and recognizing the tremendous growth achieved, we honor the incredible potential of each child. In the coming weeks, look for additional details on how we work to nurture independence at each program level along with tips for how to nurture independence at home.