IMG_0652 Center for Education, Exploration and Discovery

Center for Education, Exploration and Discovery

Center for Education, Exploration and Discovery

Project Update
October 2017

At a time when educational leaders are realizing the inadequacies of a standard one-size fits all educational approach, Richmond Montessori School provides a global-minded, time-tested, proven pedagogy that emphasizes independence, collaboration, freedom of movement, freedom of choice and adaptability.

The Center for Education, Exploration and Discovery (CEED) has been designed in honor of Dr. Maria Montessori’s passion for science and innovation, which greatly influenced her revolutionary approach to education. Montessori herself was a visionary who embraced technological advances and today we view technology and design as a complement to the Montessori curriculum.

The purpose of the CEED is to nurture children’s natural curiosities, cultivating their inherent love of literature while encouraging them to become lifelong readers and effective users of information. The program’s resources empower students to develop critical reasoning and problem-solving skills, allows them to independently navigate, evaluate and analyze print and online resources, and expands their competencies with contemporary technologies.

The CEED curriculum extends beyond the Montessori classrooms providing a rich and diverse collection of books and other media resources. The goal is to allow students the freedom to access these resources in a timely manner in a way that supports their research and interests. The CEED inspires creativity, free dialogue, data research, collaborative projects, creative writing, materialized abstractions, and interpretive inquiry.

Our vision expands the current Media Resource Center to two spaces that are adapted to serve the diverse RMS student population of children ranging in age from two to fourteen. The spaces will allow for ergonomically designed furniture, freedom of movement, creativity, and innovation, and will foster the child’s natural love of learning.

In this constantly advancing digital age we seek to fully maximize the potential of our students at the intersection of technology and education and our mission is to carry forth Dr. Montessori’s vision of education as preparation for life.

While we are eternally grateful to the Moses D. Nunnally Charitable Trust and to all of our individual leadership donors, the reality is that our vision for the CEED includes premium, high cost programming and renovations– to the tune of more than $750,000. With closer to $200,000 raised, we have adjusted to an implementation plan that fits within our current funding. With all this said, we are thrilled that this is the most RMS has fundraised for a project not considered a part of a capital campaign! As such, the funds raised thus far are truly transformational for our community and the CEED initiative will continue to evolve over the course of the current school year as infrastructure and plans come to fruition.

Establishing a solid infrastructure is critical to the success of any school improvement plan. During the summer of 2017, resources were directed to curriculum design, teacher training, technology and design upgrades, and facilities design as follows:

 

56% ($112,000)                                               Technology Infrastructure and Programming

  • 10 MacBooks were issued to the 3 Upper Elementary classes
  • 40 new MacBook Pros for student use (South CEED and Middle School)
  • 12 new iPads were purchased for 4 Lower Elementary classrooms
  • 5 iPads were purchased for the Primary classrooms
  • 3 new computer stations for student research added to the south campus library
  • Four new promethean boards (South CEED, Middle School, STEM Lab)
  • Maker Space in South CEED
  • Technology and Design curriculum development and training
  • New literacy program and resources for lower and upper elementary programs
  • New Middle School library and an increase in the collection to include 1,000 volumes

44% ($87,000)                                               Facilities Design and Renovation

  • New furnishings and soft renovation in south campus library; created an early reader room
  • Transition of former Seminar Room to the South CEED including redesign of space and new furniture
  • Furnishings for elementary literacy materials
  • North Campus new kitchen serving 4th-8th grade students

For more information on next steps and current funding priorities and opportunities, please contact Jenni Booker Baker, Director of Advancement at jbookerbaker@richmont.org or (804) 741-0040 Ext. 49.