so.. what's the bad stuff about montessory? - Mothering Forums

so.. what's the bad stuff about montessory?

loving-my-babies's Avatar loving-my-babies (TS)
01:33 AM Liked: 0
#1 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 6,142
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I read all the waldorf threads, and saw the good and the bad.. now, I didn't see the bad stuff about montessory. I want to know what you DON'T OR DIDN'T like about montessory, not comparing to waldorf neccesarily like the waldorf vs. montessory thread, but just the things you don't like. I am looking for a pre-school for my dd, now 3 years old.

AnnR33's Avatar AnnR33
02:13 AM Liked: 12
#2 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 3,683
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My son went to preschool last year at a great Montessori. I really had no big complaints about our personal experience and my son really excelled there in ways that I really didn't expect. he was writing his name after only a month when they used the sensory lessons and he was picking up things that I could not interest him in at home.
That said, I think it all depends on the individual school. While there are overriding Montesssori principles/philospophies that should be followed, each school is different and some are more rigid with these and some more flexible.
The main thing I wish was more flexible was the "real" vs pretend aspect. Everything is real life and practical. While I appreciate this to a point I also think that kids should "play" and use their imagination without being told that "it's not real." This happened a few times with my son and it was difficult to know where to draw the line-after all-I want my son be creative and use his imagination. My son did compain once in while that there were no toys. I think some toys are useful in teaching but you won't find any in a "true" Montessori.
One thing to be aware of is that the kids are left to pick their own lessons for the majority of the time-this is fine for some kids that want to complete something and move on but I observed more than once a child doing a lesson then just sitting with it and looking around or just sitting there for 30 minutes! This didn't seem very productive/learning to me. I did mention this to the teacher and she said they try to redirect kids when they see this but with 20 kids and 2 teachers it does happen sometimes....
Anyway, just be sure to ask lots of questions and observe a class in action before deciding!
Good luck
loving-my-babies's Avatar loving-my-babies (TS)
02:29 AM Liked: 0
#3 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 6,142
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mm.. see, I would like my dd to use her imagination *a lot*.

I think I will have to watch a class before I decide, but I heard the same thing a couple times, about them being too strict about "real" and "practical"
AnnR33's Avatar AnnR33
02:59 AM Liked: 12
#4 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 3,683
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That really was the main complaint I have. My son is very imaginative and is quite the story teller. He makes up names for things and has an imaginary "big sister" that he talks about a lot. At school the other kids would get in arguements with him and say "that's not real." The teacher asked me after about 4 mos how much we remind him of what's real vs imaginary and we said we didn't think too much about it at age 5. We just let him be creative and even add to the stories ourselves. She said this may be something we start to think about changing but we just said thanks but we were happy with his way of thinking right now. I think she respected that even if she didn't agree with it.
If he went everyday all day I might have thought more about this but my son only went 3 afternoons a week for 2.5 hrs so he still got lots of playtime at home where he could tell all the stories he wanted. This short time each week was a nice change for him I think to get a more structured way of learning without it being overwhelming or stiffling. But that was just my child, some other child may love it every day...
CraftyMommaOf2's Avatar CraftyMommaOf2
03:19 AM Liked: 0
#5 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 714
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The imagination vs reality issue is kind of a sensitive spot for ppl that have actually read Maria Montessori's works, etc. I think alot of the schools take it waaaaay to far. MM (Maria Montessori) actually said that children need play time and they need to use their imagination. The casas that she started were in the slums of Italy. The poor kids there needed the reality part as they were always using their imaginations. They had no toys etc and were used to pretending for everything. It's not like that today. Anyways...sorry for the ramble...minor pet peeve. I would say to make sure that you observe any school you are considering. Talk to the parents, teachers, find out when the next parents night is and go hang out. HTH some :LOL
lauren's Avatar lauren
08:18 AM Liked: 12085
#6 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 6,840
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I don't have direct experience with Montessori, but from my knowledge of child development, I believe it is part of a child's development that they gradually begin to know what's real and what's pretend, not something we need to teach them necessarily (excpet for reassuring them that there is NOT a real monster in the closet!!) I would take exception to stressing this with children purely on a developmental basis--they need their imaginative world when they are little--it's how they make sense of things in their own way. Things get more real for them when they are developmentally ready, usually around 6 or 7.
thyme's Avatar thyme
09:34 AM Liked: 5
#7 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 392
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The one problem with Montessori is that anyone can use that name -- Maria Montessori didn't trademark or copyright or whatever, so anyone opening a school can call it a Montessori school even if the philosophies aren't even close to "Montessori."

You really have to research each individual school thoroughly. Anything anyone says here about Montessori may or may not hold true for your school. It makes it difficult to get good information.
loving-my-babies's Avatar loving-my-babies (TS)
12:10 PM Liked: 0
#8 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 6,142
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Originally Posted by thyme
The one problem with Montessori is that anyone can use that name -- Maria Montessori didn't trademark or copyright or whatever, so anyone opening a school can call it a Montessori school even if the philosophies aren't even close to "Montessori."

You really have to research each individual school thoroughly. Anything anyone says here about Montessori may or may not hold true for your school. It makes it difficult to get good information.

very interesting. I had no idea! I'm going to read more about maria montessori and ask tons of questions at the school...
Rhonwyn's Avatar Rhonwyn
01:18 PM Liked: 14
#9 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 2,677
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in that they vary greatly from school to school. Of the two I looked at, one was very cold, stressed the practical and almost seemed to stamp on the imagination, also the children were nasty to each other and no one intervened; the second was very loving and warm but it was very choatic and all of the children's artwork looked like it had been copied on a copy machine as in no individuality. My sister-in-law on the otherhand, found a Montessori school that she and her children loved. I would learn as much as possible about Montessori and then see how an individual school applies the ideas.
mammastar's Avatar mammastar
05:23 PM Liked: 0
#10 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 501
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They very hugely from school to school, and I think that often the name "Montessori" is just used to reel in the enrollment at the shadier places. In a lot of ways, I'd be more cautious about a Montessori school than about your garden variety nursery school because of this - not necessarily because of something inherent in Montessori teachings.

My 2 stepdaughters go to a Montessori school - they both began at age 3 and are now ages 5 and almost 9. The school wasn't our pick, although both kids like it and they have had some very good teachers. It has given us a chance to observe what we like/don't like about it, and think about what we would want for my 2.5 year old. We would have some concerns that relate to the Montessori philosophy, and that may be more or less of an issue depending on the school's own take.

Our principal issue is with the notion of the teacher/directress as an 'expert' to whom you hand over your child. Many Montessoris require daily, often full-day attendance from the age of 3 or 4 (I found that the Canadian Montessori Administrators' association requires this for certification under their standards). For us, this isn't what we are looking for. Some Montessori schools will only take 'older' (i.e. age 5 or 6 and up) new students if they have 'Montessori experience.' I find this unfortunate. My stepdaughters' school required at the preschool level that the parent remain in the doorway while saying goodbye to their child and leave promptly; at the end of the day, the child shakes hands with the teacher at the door and then passes from the teacher's authority to that of the parent. From my point of view, this is somewhat inflexible and also does not represent the level of involvement that we want as parents in our children's education. Finally, the children's 'work' in the classroom at my daughters' school is just too all-consuming for me, in that it doesn't really involve them in their community or the world around them - why practice pouring and counting with approved materials only, and not in the kitchen with mom or dad, or at the beach? For me, it's a bit of a philosophical difference.

With both my stepdaughters, I found that there was a certain period of time after they had just begun preschool where they were very excited to go and do their 'work' (as it's called) every day. By the third year in the same classroom, the glow had worn off. When they were 3 they wanted desperately to get to do the 'work' reserved for older children in the room, such as the moveable alphabet, but were told that they were not yet 'ready' to receive the demonstration in the proper use of the materials (which is often very important in Montessori). Yet by the age of 5, when they were 'ready' to use the older materials, their teachers commented that the girls were reluctant to choose challenging materials and preferred to re-do simpler tasks they had already mastered. This makes me wonder about the wisdom of this emphasis on using materials 'correctly', at least for some children.

If I can think of anything else I'll let you know, but those are the main broad brush concerns I had - other stuff I think would just vary a lot by the school.
pugmadmama's Avatar pugmadmama
06:16 PM Liked: 13
#11 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 1,819
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Originally Posted by thyme
The one problem with Montessori is that anyone can use that name -- Maria Montessori didn't trademark or copyright or whatever, so anyone opening a school can call it a Montessori school even if the philosophies aren't even close to "Montessori."

You really have to research each individual school thoroughly. Anything anyone says here about Montessori may or may not hold true for your school. It makes it difficult to get good information.
This is so important. I've interviewed three Montessori schools for my son and they were all different from each other.

In addition to strict "Montessori" schools, there are "Montessori-based" schools, which is what we wound up going with. We loved them. In both schools, the director had been Montessori trained but had decided to add in other elements as well and so did not want to advertise as strictly Montessori.

I know it can be a hassle and time-consuming, but I would not select or reject a Montessori school, or any school, without first doing at least one visit.
hockeymama's Avatar hockeymama
10:09 PM Liked: 10
#12 of 69
07-12-2004 | Posts: 155
Joined: Jun 2004
It actually can depend on what the school's affiliation is (AMS or AMI)

AMS is the American Montessori Association that began by a woman who had met with Mario Montessori (Maria's son) and wanted to begin teacher ed. programs in the states.. She liked the original theories and practices of montessori but wanted to add other components to it and so she broke away from AMI. Basically, and AMI school (Association Montessori Internationale) adheres closer to the original practices of Maria Montessori and thus the lack of room for play, imagination, etc. In the montessori school I teach at, we actually include dress up into our classes, have baby dolls and strollers, and while we do present the materials for their intended usage. there is room for imaginative play as long as they are not being mishandled or destroyed. As someone posted earlier, it isn't intended that the children must "work" all the time, there should be quiet areas for reading, time to play outdoors of course, art. things that do allow a child to experience and express their creativity.

But you do want to be careful, many schools may claim to be montessori but in practice truly aren't be it AMS or AMI neither is better than the other, just different. Also, watch out for teachers that tell you your child isn't ready to try something they are interested in. I have a friend who's daughter is not quite four yet and learned to read and write her name early on, but instead of the teacher encouraging her desire to continue to learn this, she chastised her for learning it "wrong" and said she wasn't ready to do this yet. Well obviously she was becasue she DID!

Do some reading, ask around, feel free to get in touch with me I can maybe answer some more questions for you (though I'm 0-3 not 3-6 but my best friend is a 3-6er, she may be able to help as well). Mostly, your comfort and your child's of course are most important, you instincts will tell you if it's the right fit or not.

you can also check out the different association websites (AMI) (AMS)
Good luck!
Mamax3's Avatar Mamax3
01:26 PM Liked: 10
#13 of 69
07-14-2004 | Posts: 960
Joined: Nov 2001
Originally Posted by thyme
The one problem with Montessori is that anyone can use that name -- Maria Montessori didn't trademark or copyright or whatever, so anyone opening a school can call it a Montessori school even if the philosophies aren't even close to "Montessori."

You really have to research each individual school thoroughly. Anything anyone says here about Montessori may or may not hold true for your school. It makes it difficult to get good information.

My children went to a Montessori school for preK and K and it was not allowed to have the word "Montessori" in it's title because at the time of it's inception only one of the two teachers were actually "montessori certified".....since that time they have both been "montessori certified" but didn't go through the channels to change the name of the school. I was told that it couldn't be called a "montessori" school unless all of the teachers have been through the montessori certification process.
siddie's Avatar siddie
08:16 AM Liked: 1
#14 of 69
07-15-2004 | Posts: 748
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WEll, you are asking the right person here, we had a bad Montessori experience. My ds (age 4) attended for 2 and a half to 3 mos and then I withdrew him. My reasons were:
1. Inflexible schedule - they insisted my ds attend ft - it wasn't in their brochure or policy book so was sprung on me as a surprise two weeks into it.
2. Montessori work is also inflexible, only one right way to do things. While it is good for the kids to learn processes and putting things away when finished, I think it is bad for their self-esteem to tell them that they didn't do it correctly.
3. The teachers had obvious favorites in the class, the older kids who had been there longest. The older kids were ALWAYS used to demonstrate new work.
4. Poor supervision on the playground. No preventative measures for biting, hitting.
5. Pushing the independance thing a little too far. Ex: if you can't open your applesauce at lunch by yourself, you can't eat it. Not reading books to kids, telling them to look at the pictures and figure out for themself what is happening.
6. Teachers are not the warm fuzzy preschool teachers you imagine. The term directress is a good description. I think all preschoolers need a few hugs and reassurances now and then, not a prison work leader.
7. Bad judgement on the part of the director and teachers that included walking the kids 3 blocks along a busy 4-lane highway to the library for storytime.
8. None of the good old fun stuff like fingerpainting and water play. Painting is done one way (use the sponge or flower to make a print) and water play consists of washing windows with water.
9. There seems to be a bit of an elitist attitude associated with Montessori. WHile this particular school was actually cheaper than most, the families were all living in the most $$ zipcodes and driving $$ cars and suvs. Unfortunately, most of the parents were both working too. Some kids were dropped off by nannies in Lexus Suv's. There were only two other moms aside from myself that are sahms.
10. This school touted itself as an AMI school but is NOT a member. I telephoned to verify their membership and was shocked that they would misrepresent themselves.
11. They would move toddlers up to the age 3-6 yr old class at age 2yrs 9 mos with the only requirement being they were potty trained. I think they should have just left those kids in the class they were comfortable in. They should have also required them to have mastered not biting or hitting.

That said, I am still considering a different Montessori school for the fall but I am really checking it out well. I am making multiple observations and asking very direct questions. They are much nicer and do not require mandatory attendance. They also have an open door policy which is more comfortable for me.
mamamillet's Avatar mamamillet
10:06 AM Liked: 0
#15 of 69
07-15-2004 | Posts: 1,968
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My son attends a Montessori school that we both love. That being said, I really think it depends on the school. I also looked at a school that was way too focused on academics-for 3-5 year olds. The three yo class had limited time outside and the 4 and 5 yo had none on a daily basis. I was looking for a school that would really help guide him socially and emotionally and the majority of the time the kids were encouraged to "work" independently which I did not feel would help him socially or emotionally. The school he now attends is very different. I haven't seen any strict adherence to some of the negative things being said in this post. I also feel that wram fuzzy feeling from a lot of the teachers at the school. The children are alo very well surpervised outside and being mean to others is also not allowed. The op asked for things not liked about montessori--there are more things that I like than don't and I really think it depends on the school.
siddie's Avatar siddie
04:31 PM Liked: 1
#16 of 69
07-15-2004 | Posts: 748
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Some of the things that should have tipped me off about the bad Mont. School my ds attended are:
1. NO wait list, the good schools in our city have long wait lists of 1-2 yrs
2. HIgh turnover of kids, the first month we saw 3 kids in a class of 15 leave
3. The teacher was eager to start my ds in school, I was actually planning on starting him in summer or fall, she talked me into starting him in FEb. (big mistake) because "he was ready"
siddie's Avatar siddie
04:35 PM Liked: 1
#17 of 69
07-15-2004 | Posts: 748
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I almost forgot, the reason we are still considering Montessori is because it has been proven to be esp. good for boys. They have a harder time sticking with group activities and like working independently. Long term studies done by HeaDSTART show higher sat scores for boys that attended Mont. than for those who attended a tradtitional preschool. The higher scores are sustained through 8th grade. IT is attributed to the boys learning to work independently (motivated from within) and learning to work projects/processes through at an early age.
aishy's Avatar aishy
06:22 PM Liked: 1
#18 of 69
07-15-2004 | Posts: 1,776
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I have no complaints about the Montessori school my son went to. It is closed now, but we will miss it so much. My son did so well, he loved going to school. He goes to a traditional school this year for Kindergarden, using the A Beka curriculum, so we'll see how that goes. And I plan to home-pre-school my 3 year old using mostly Montessori materials & ideas. And a lot of the more "unschooling" and learning from the world around us ideas as well.

mommy22's Avatar mommy22
01:42 AM Liked: 0
#19 of 69
07-16-2004 | Posts: 137
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We are in our 8th year at our montessori school. It is true that anyone can use the name Montessori, but you can't say you are AMS, AMI, etc. if you haven't been certified through them.

Our school is AMS, and it's a great mixture. We are a Montessori school, following montessori principals, but there are other interests included.

The real life vs. imaginary was never an issue. It's never even been discussed within the realm of montessori principals at our school. My kids got/get plenty of playtime and plenty of opportunities to express themselves through their imagination.

Currently my boys are in 3rd and 5th grade, and will continue Montessori through 8th grade. If we are lucky enough to somehow get a montessori HS in this area, they will attend that as well.

You know the saying "It takes a village to raise a child"? I consider our school part of my village!
babyj's Avatar babyj
03:09 AM Liked: 0
#20 of 69
07-16-2004 | Posts: 115
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I agree that everything depends on the school / teachers. DS (32 months) just started a summer program 2 AMs a week and we're loving it. I observed a whole bunch of schools and this particular school twice. I also attended a Q & A session with the directors as well as met individually with the pre-school director. I would say that a good school will encourage you to research, question and observe. Our school seems as interested in how the parents feel as well as the children. I had also heard that Mont Method was good for active boys. I would recommend not only observing the appropriate age group for your child but the next level up. That way you can see if you like the direction your child would be headed.

My one itty bitty complaint is that they are soooo respectful of each child's body (personal space) that at our school they will not force a diaper change (at least to DS). Understand that this is a child who is very anti diaper change and will always refuse a change. I guess I actually like the fact that he doesn't have to have his privacy invaded unless he agrees but.... That said, they did change a poopy diaper on him earlier this week.

The school day ( 2&1/2 hrs total) starts on the playground and parents are encourged to join their children. At some point one of the teachers will come around and say "feel free to leave when you're ready". I love this. My son and I now have an agreement that I'll stay 5 minutes. If you choose to stay, and you can, you will have to stay the entire class (I've done this).

My son comes home with lots paintings, stampings and gluings. I love how they handle snacks, and the teachers shake hands, hug and have children sitting on their laps some of the time (depending on the child's desire). Yes, we're probably in the honeymoon phase, but I would strongly recommend observing a certified Montessori school near you.

e&r's Avatar e&r
02:48 AM Liked: 0
#21 of 69
07-21-2004 | Posts: 228
Joined: Sep 2002
check out http://www.pleasantvalleymontessori....d/schedule.htm

for what should be a typical day in a Children's House
siddie's Avatar siddie
01:18 PM Liked: 1
#22 of 69
07-24-2004 | Posts: 748
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ANother thing that stands out to me after comparing the new/improved Montessori school we are considering and the developmental school is the lack of new activities. The developmental school has lots of things scheduled like water play, pinata day, paper mache volcanos. The MOntessor has the same work out on the shelves day after day.
mommyboo's Avatar mommyboo
06:35 PM Liked: 10
#23 of 69
07-25-2004 | Posts: 35
Joined: Mar 2004
Originally Posted by thyme
The one problem with Montessori is that anyone can use that name -- Maria Montessori didn't trademark or copyright or whatever, so anyone opening a school can call it a Montessori school even if the philosophies aren't even close to "Montessori."

You really have to research each individual school thoroughly. Anything anyone says here about Montessori may or may not hold true for your school. It makes it difficult to get good information.
I agree. Even Montessori International has a disclaimer on its website about individual schools having their own interpretation of Montessori philosophy. My son went to one well known and well established one. He was in the toddlers class and the school was beautiful. I should have observed a session I think. The director was very charming during the tour, the curriculum was great and the kids looked ok so I went for it. The teacher had unrealistic expectations from a 2 year old. She expected a VERY high level of attention span, focus, lack of interest in toys, she expected good communication skills and just imposssible levels of co operation from a child who has only just left home and started school !! She had the nerve to complain my son was too creative and active, full of pretend play !! I had him out of there in only 3 weeks ! Good riddance I say! I am a pediatric occupational therapist and I know my son is just fine for his age. It was horrible to hear someone blabber on about how active he is, with poor attention span etc etc, Puhleese! :
Anyhow, please do your homework before enrolling.
Treasuremapper's Avatar Treasuremapper
01:35 AM Liked: 14
#24 of 69
08-04-2004 | Posts: 3,589
Joined: Jul 2004
I looked into a local Montessori school, which says it is AMI, but I have some real problems with it and decided against it. On the plus side, it appeared to be real Montessori in terms of the equipment, furniture, etc.

But it is located right next to a huge highway right off the feeder, so the playground is dominated by highway noise.

In addition, they prohibit parents from coming into the classroom at any time, ever, for any reason, not even for drop off or pick up. The ratio is one adult for fourteen children! Yikes! I can barely manage with one adult for two children, believe me.

It is very expensive, around $550 a month for three hours a day five days a week, plus more for any extras. I calculated a bit and wondered why they were always fundraising so hard with tuition like that with the bad location and the poor ratio of teachers and students. Something fishy is up with that. They definitely didn't appear to be putting the money into beautifying the grounds.

There were things about it that I loved, but not enough to make the financial sacrifices that would be required to pull it off.
mommy22's Avatar mommy22
01:29 PM Liked: 0
#25 of 69
08-04-2004 | Posts: 137
Joined: Jul 2002
If parents are not allowed into the classroom, then I would have to say that this school is not a 'true' Montessori school. With rules like that, I would stay away, too!

As far a student/teacher ratio, 1/14 is pretty good, depending on the ages of the students. Alot of Montessori schools are as high as 1/20 and that's because the children work in small groups with self-directed materials. The teachers are in the classroom as guides for the children. And consider that in traditional public/private schools, the student/teacher ratio is as high as 1/30! My children are in an elementary, AMS Montessori school. There are about 23 students per classroom and each classroom has 1 teacher and 1 aid.

Location is important, but not as important as the school's ciriculum, teachers, staff and adherence to Montessori philosophy.
comet's Avatar comet
12:26 AM Liked: 12
#26 of 69
08-11-2004 | Posts: 631
Joined: Aug 2002
One Montessori school I checked out made it very clear that parents were not allowed to come to the classroom, except perhaps once or twice a year. GADS! It was a colder atmosphere than I wanted, almost too quiet. When I visited the school, I had to sit in a chair in the corner turned to one side so as to not disrupt the children. I was told to not make direct eye contact with any child. It felt so creepy to me.

The other Montessori school across town from this one was so much friendlier and looser, I liked it much better. Also, the 2nd one had a playground outside, whereas the first one didn't (big surprise, not). I'm sure my daughter will like the second one better than the first one. You really have to actually go and visit any school you're considering.
Evan&Anna's_Mom's Avatar Evan&Anna's_Mom
09:03 PM Liked: 430
#27 of 69
08-11-2004 | Posts: 4,388
Joined: Jun 2003
This may or may not be important to you, depending on your plans for after preschool. The private school my son will start soon will not accept students from a Montessori preschool because of the emphasis on self-directed work which does not, in their experience, transition well into a more typical classroom. As I said, may not matter to you. May or may not be true about the transition. But probably worth a quick thought about what you think you want to do post-preschool. If you are headed to public school or a different private school, you might want to ask their teachers about their opinions about the local school you are considering.
chiedza's Avatar chiedza
05:12 PM Liked: 10
#28 of 69
08-13-2004 | Posts: 483
Joined: Nov 2002
My son (age 2) goes to a Montessori school that has a toddler room for kids age 2-3. They are not certified AMS or AMI, but all of the head teachers have gone through Montessori training.

He's only been there 5 weeks, but we are having a really good experience. I especially wanted to add something about the imagination issue -- my DS has become incredibly imaginative since he started there. He is all the time pretending to be different people, animals, objects, etc., and to hold different animals in his hands and pet them, etc. Maybe this is naturally for his age, I don't know, but it seemed to really take off after he started at the school.

And at the school itself I don't know exactly how they encourage imaginitive play or not, but they do have toys for pretend play such as toy kitchens with food, dolls, dressup clothes, etc.

I never knew there was an issue about Montessori schools discouraging imaginative play before I read it here, but I would simply ask the teachers and director about that issue when you visit the school(s) you are considering.
Kleine Hexe's Avatar Kleine Hexe
05:31 PM Liked: 11
#29 of 69
08-15-2004 | Posts: 6,783
Joined: Dec 2001
I had my DS in a M school for a week and took him out. When I wanted to observet he classroom I too had to sit in a corner and not interact. I was told they have an open door policy which to me means I can enter the classroom and see my child when I like. That's what it meant at the daycare I worked at before I had children. After I enrolled my DS I found out that this open door policy was not what I thought. I was not allowed to enter the classroom not even to pick him up at the end of the day. His first day he was afraid and wanted me to go in with him. The director reluctantly complied but I had to sit in the corner again. The next day my DS walked in willing by himself. The third day all hell broke loose. He screamed and cried. I walked him to the room and the teacher stopped me at the door and said she would take him in and I was to leave. "It's important to let the child know he can not manipulate you" she said to me.

I would hang around and watch him throught the window (tinted so he couldn't see me) and he often sat by himself. It made me sad that the teachers did not really try to talk to him. I know my son needs time and space to warm up but it was like he was being ignored. After seeing him sitting by himself on the playground for 10 minutes I decided to take him home since there was only 15 minutes left of his day. I walked out onto the playground (which I wasn't supposed to do) and tried talking to the teacher. I asked her if he interacted, had fun, played with the kids. I wanted to know if he *enjoyed* being there. She told me they don't call it "playing" they call it "work." Now I know all about the philosophy and jazz...I learned all about child development from my days of teaching. I wanted to know if my son was having a good time. I didn't need a lecture. When I started to leave with him the teacher told me "it was ok if I left with him now because the day was almost over." Well, I hadn't asked her permission to leave with *my* child! I was very unhappy with her condescending attitude and inability to tell me how my child was doing and if he was enjoying himself.

I actually took him back the next day. I don't know why. The way parents were supposed to drop off kids was to pull up in the car and a teacher came and got the child out. I can see the practicality of this. My son started screaming when the lady opened the door. He was unbuckled and he jumped into my lap in the driver's seat. He was clinging to me screaming and crying and the woman was actually trying to pry him off me! I almost punched her in the face. I told her to let him go. She looked confused and said that I wasn't really allowed to take him to the classroom. I told her she was not taking him. I sat there thinking about it all. I decided we weren't ready for this. My son was not ready for school and I did not like the school. We never went back.

I started to think more about the real life structure the school had. I don't want my son to think he can't try an activity before he's been "shown" how to do it. I want him to learn to use his imagination and to be creative. I want his problem solving skills to develop. I do not see that happening at the school I tried.

Very sour taste in mouth from that school. Now I'm seriously consifering homeschooling.
alwayslearning2's Avatar alwayslearning2
03:30 AM Liked: 0
#30 of 69
09-07-2004 | Posts: 85
Joined: Aug 2004
I really wanted my 2 1/2 to have the opportunity that montessori provides, however I hate hate hate that you cann't stay in the room till they get acclimated and have to hand then to the teacher at the door. I think he will love the materials and learning from the other children, but after a week of pre-school "summer camp" he doesn't want to leave the house, he says he wants to stay home,
is this just a transition, or am i scarring him pushing him to de-attatch from me before he is ready. he is still nursing co-sleeping

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