1321 Wirt Road, Houston, Texas 77055

Celebrating 55 Years
of Learning!

1962 - 2017

Society (AMS)

Performing Arts

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American Montessori
Society (AMS)

Full Member School

School of the Woods offers classes for students in early childhood through high school.


Children learn actively in this multi-aged grouping of children (21/2 - 6 years old). Exposure to a rich variety of experiences is a vital part of the curriculum since children of this age learn easier and more efficiently than at any other time of life.

Interactions across learner-centered classroom areas include activities in practical life, sensory development, language arts, math, science, art and cultural subjects. This holistic approach focuses on the whole child to foster optimal growth and development. Teachers personalize instruction to allow the child to experience success as he/she acquires progressive skills and knowledge.


Children at this level (1st-3rd grades) widen their horizons through an expanding curriculum. Abundant materials foster optimum development of reading, spelling and writing skills. Math operations emphasize the understanding of process as well as accuracy in computations. Acquired basic skills are then applied in interdisciplinary themes. In science, students research, classify, observe and do experiments. Work in cultural subjects includes the study of needs of people around the world and throughout history. Diverse learning experiences in music and art are enhanced with field trips to the symphony and museum.

An interactive learner-centered environment provides small and whole group cooperative activities in addition to individualized instruction.

Since recent studies indicate that grades are unreliable, invalid and subjective, children at School of the Woods do not receive grades. Instead, they advance through a system known as mastery learning. This means that students must demonstrate a mastery of the lesson to be learned before they proceed to the next progressive lesson.


Children of the upper elementary level (4th-6th grades) cross the bridge between learning by hands-on experiences and the abstract understanding of concepts. New thinking brings a growing sense of membership in society.

Work on group projects, use of community resources (such as libraries and museums) and an expansion in field study become important new elements in the curriculum. Children go on fossil digs, attend ecology camps, study lifestyles of ancient peoples in cultural anthropology experiences and tour early American historical sites. The introduction of homework teaches social skills in monitoring work, meeting deadlines responsibly and using textbooks efficiently. Mastery learning assumes a new dimension in the upper elementary class with 95% accuracy required in math testing before students can progress.

Upper elementary students give service by aiding younger children in their lessons, sharing research results with other classes and sharing information with other schools.


MIDDLE SCHOOL (Ages 12-15)

The 7th and 8th grade years encompass a time of rapid growth and change in the early adolescent. In response to the developmental needs of this age group, School of the Woods implemented a program which has become a model for other Montessori and public middle school programs. The program seeks the empowerment of adolescents through the encouragement of both individual "response-ability" and cooperative skills. All subjects are interrelated, and large blocks of thinking time allow for the emerging cognitive ability to explore possibilities and ideas. Curricula are interdisciplinary and multi-stranded, and applications to life are emphasized in each subject area.

Students prepare a monthly progress report for parents and plan and initiate parent-student-teacher conferences three times a year. They evaluate themselves in 3 areas: academic growth, individual "response-ability," and group "response-ability." Students now must demonstrate a 90% mastery of each area of study through presentations as well as test scores. Two independent study projects are required each year as well as one elective per month in order to address the adolescent need to explore new ideas.

Cooperative skills are enhanced through community service, community building activities (such as the ROPES course) and cross-age teaching. Students participate as interns for 3 weeks in schools, 2 weeks of which are spent with handicapped students. Another week of internship is served in local businesses. Students interact in student government committees, and they present science, history and computer lessons to other School of the Woods' students. Class businesses allow students to exercise cooperative and practical applications of skills. Students also plan monthly socials where they may attend plays, movies, or dances.

HIGH SCHOOL (Ages 15-18)

The Woods High School courses of study reflect an integration of the Texas requirements of essential elements, the newest research on the developmental needs of adolescents, the Montessori philosophy, the state of the art in current learning theory and the predictions of the skills needed for a productive life in the twenty-first century.

The curriculum and instruction is designed as a four-year program in which students earn at least 24 Texas Education Agency credits. The english, speech, Spanish, health education, outdoor education, service learning, and fine arts are courses of continuous progress. The science, humanities, health and math are studied by topics or concepts. Students must earn 4 credits of english, 4 credits of math, 3-4 credits of science, 4 credits of social science, 2 credits of foreign language, 2 credits of health, 1.5 credits of health fitness, 1 credits of fine arts, 1 credit of academic electives, 2 credits of speech, 2 credits of computer technology, 1 credit of community outreach, 1 credit of career education and .5 credits of other electives. Students who are interested in college level courses can enroll for a 3 or 4 credit hour class during their senior year.

Woods High School offers a challenging curriculum. Students are expected to complete core classes with an 80% mastery of the material. Students who complete core course work on time with 80% mastery receive credit for the course with an Honors designation. Students who choose to challenge themselves in specific classes and complete the additional projects assigned will receive credit with a Gifted/Talented Honors designation. Students who need more time, alternative assessment, or extensive coaching in any course will receive credit for the course with an Academic designation.

 Copyright © 2000-2017
   School of the Woods
The School of the Woods, a Montessori school, admits students of any race, color, national & ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs & activities, generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national & ethnic origin in administration of its educational policies, admission policies, scholarship & loan programs & athletic & other school administered programs.