My DS is 4 and starting pre-k on Monday. My dilemma is that last year he finished preschool, which was great and served it's purpose for many things last year and I had honestly like 5 complaints all school year long that he couldnt' finish a task or that he would frequently get up during lunch and couldn't sit still. With that said, my son is a very sweet, loving kid and I think he's very bright although I've never had his IQ tested. Over the Sumer I put him in a gymastics Summer camp which was more of a disaster and a hindrance than anything positive because he ended up befriending two other hyperactive boys, which drove the coaches insane and everyday was a complaint. Everyday I heard about my son running off to a random place in the gymansium and not staying with their group, or my son not being able to sit during story time, etc. Additionally, when I picked him up the counselors would tell me in front of my son "he was good today", or "he was bad today" it was exhausting and my son starting internalizing the "bad" concept and telling me at home "mommy, I'm bad because I don't listen right?" which is the last thing I want to do.
Fast forward a few weeks later, my mother in law comes in to town and we have a long talk about possibly changing his diet and reducing and even eliminating sugar from my son's diet and so I have been doing that and saw many improvements at home. Moreover, my mother in law mentioned that a montessori school may be great for him becaues may challenge him, etc. so I looked into a great montessori school in Boca, which I really liked and thought everything was going great because there had been very little communications with his montessori certified teacher. They started the school year August 1st of 2012 and so since then for many reasons the first week he was in school 2 days, the second week 3 days and this the first full week he completed a full week in the montessori school. At first, the teacher commented to me that he had a difficult time keeping his attention in circle time, story time, and he wanted to quickly finish each lesson whether or not they were right or wrong to move on to something else and she just tells me to give him time, give him time, and my husband and I aren't sure if we should keep him in montessori for pre-k or move him back to his other school..
The teacher at montessori seems very strict, yet very loving to our son and at the same time very cold with my husband and I when we ask her questions. I'm torn between leaving him here and seeing what Montessori may be able to do for our 4 year old son or if I should put him back in the pre-k class he was used to where he has ton of friends or see if Montessori could make a huge difference in his independence and I want to know how to foster more of the montessori lessons at home to help him out.
any help would be greatly appreciated. It's heartbreaking hearing that your son can't focus or can't sit in circle time. :( I feel my son can focus and can sit still maybe the montessori classroom is too stimulating and too new for him. Any moms out there started their kids at such an old age 4+ in a montessori enviornemnt with similar issues and was it a success?
I haven't btdt but if I were you I would keep him in Montessori. That's because Montessori was designed specifically for children with learning challenges! It's perfectly suitable to high needs children.
My son is high energy (not ADHD but I bet in another family environment he could receive that diagnosis) and I think Montessori would suit him beautifully. It's child-led and very tactile (perfect for children who may have some trouble concentrating or are figety). Also, Montessori schools tend to be very respectful and would never, ever do that thing the gymnastic coaches did and call your son bad. How horrible!
Lastly, I personally think changing schools for young children can be very emotional and I wouldn't do it unless there was a really good reason. So I think I would trust the teacher and give it some time before making another big change.
Oh, please keep him in Montessori. I wavered for so many years on whether to put my DS in Montessori, never did, now he's 7 and recently diagnosed with ADHD and I wish every day I had, it would be so much better for him. Fortunately he is in a pretty supportive public school, but I now have DD in Montessori, and can see how it is--it's really superior for these kids. Montessori is pretty strict--there are specific rules for the materials and the classroom--in the long run I feel these kids really benefit from that. At the same time, once they know how to care for the materials, they can choose what they work on and for how long, and in what position (ie laying on the floor instead of seated at a desk, alone or with a group) so much better. When we first started Montessori with DD I was also a bit surprised at the lack of teacher/parent interaction--but they're focused on the kids--not the parents. Finally--the classroom is so much more peaceful and quiet that DS's play-based preschool was. I think that aura of calm would have been so much better for him. Hope your son has a great experience too.
I would suggest to pursue Montessori as much of it is about being child-led and the discipline comes from within. Here are a few sites that may be of interest for you, hoping they don't violate any website terms/conditions. One of the url's is this forum. You can also do a google search on ADHD or special needs or hyperactivity (plus) Montessori. One thing to consider - is that many schools try to minimize parent interaction in the classroom (i.e., not visit) until at least a month or so to allow the class to settle into a routine (that might be some of the "give him time" response).
My little guy who is 4 and a half while not officially diagnosed will likely at some point end up with an ADHD diagnosis. I am keeping in Montessori for as long as I can. He is able to learn at his own pace and his teacher allows him the freedom to move around as needed and he is doing wonderfully. My vote is keep him in Montessori.
I know this is a late reply, but I felt I had to chime in. I have a 10 year old son who was diagnosed ADHD in second grade and has been in Montessori since he was 3. I have to say it has been wonderful for him. Aside from one less than understanding teacher (who we luckily only had for one year because we had changed schools), he has had the best, most understanding teachers that work with his challenges and can give him the individual attention when he needs it -- particularly in the elementary years. He is able to get up and walk around when he needs to, go to the bathroom, change work, whatever he needs to keep interested and focused. I am now looking at changing him to a regular middle school for 6th grade and I am terrified! I just wanted to give you the perspective from an older child who has gone through the entire Montessori experience with ADHD and thrived. He has learned to love learning and enjoy school and doesn't seem negatively affected by his diagnosis at all. Hope it helps!
This may be neither here nor there, but my daughter went to a solid Montessori preschool for 2.5 years, and has now been in public school for about 2 years. In Montessori, when we had a good teacher, it was great. We left our preschool in the middle of the 3rd year because the new teacher didn't really believe in special needs and continually excluded our daughter from class instead of working with her. The public school has been very good about dealing with my daughter's special needs (she was diagnosed with sensory processing disorder around age 3, and officially with ADHD at 6). However, they are so very busy dealing with her "problems" that they seldom bother to accommodate her strengths (for example, she is in 1st grade but reads on about an 8th grade level; but because she is "too disruptive" the school will not send her up to a higher level literacy class). We are thinking of applying for a local Montessori elementary for next year and crossing our fingers and hoping buckets of financial aid are available because I really think she would be far less "disruptive" if she wasn't also bored.