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  Topic Review (Newest First)
04-09-2008 10:26 PM
honeybee I'm a former high school math teacher, who then went on to do some work in math educational publishing. I taught a more hands-on, contemporary curriculum that dealt with experimentation and a focus on comprehension and problem solving rather than memorizing and regurgitating steps.

I was looking into different preschools, and actually thought I wanted to send ds to an Emilia Reggio school... until I visited our local Montessori public school. I was so impressed with the class and the teacher. And, I fell IN LOVE with the math materials. I immediately went out and bought the book Montessori: The Science Behind the Genius and devoured it. Montessori just seemed to embody everything I've learned about how kids learn best, and the quieter atmosphere seemed to fit my sensitive son perfectly. He has been attending preschool this past year, and it has been wonderful. I can't tell you what warm fuzzies it gives this former math teacher to hear him identify patterns and use correct terminology like "squre prism."
04-06-2008 12:34 AM
wonamini Hello Montessorians!

My name is Karen and I have a 4 year old son, Jonas, who is completing his second year at Freedom Montessori. www.freedommontessori.org My son and I accidentally fell into his current school after an unpleasant experience with his daycare.

The school helped guide me through his onery age of 3 and in the process has helped develop a young boy of 4 years of age who exhibits so much grace and courtesy to himself and others - that it may frighten some!

I have read and continue to re-read Maria Montessori's An Absorbant Mind and continue to be amazed by her groundbreaking, progressive, and universal approach to life and the critical moments that we must (and most fail to) seize upon.

Jonas will be entering into a new class next year. His breadth of knowledge and self-discipline and kindness and patience towards others is more than anything I ever expected out of my child. I did not intend to have my child go to a "private" school. But his school does plan on expanding in grades and I do hope to keep him there for as long as possible.

I look forward to talking more Montessori talk with everyone.

"If hope and salvation are to come, they will come from the children, for the children are makers of men." - Maria Montessori
03-22-2008 09:22 PM
Mountain Diva I am a certified AMI Montessori Primary teacher. I trained at what was called OMTI in Cleveland OH, it has now been absorbed by NAMTA, I think. I taught for many years and then started having babies. I am homeschooling my 6 yr old DS and 4 yr old DD. We live in the mountains of Colorado. We have many materials, and a carpenter for DH. I am going to learn the Lower and Upper El programs if I can't afford to send my son to the private school here which is the closest thing to an Erd Kinder. Of course, first I have to get over my fears of sending him to school anywhere before that can even be considered. And since I may never get over my fears for my daughter, the whole point could be moot, and I'd be wise to face the fact that I will be teaching them for a long time. Some moms think I'm crazy, others ask if they can send their child here. My husband wants me to open up officially, but I have no desire to do that, too many legalities. Plus, we like to call Snow- Days and go skiing whenever there is fresh powder! People make positive comments about my children all the time. Not because they are doing any advanced academics, they are not, but they are polite, respectful, friendly and compassionate. I'm new to this whole web page, and hope to gather lots of useful information.
03-22-2008 08:24 PM
princessalex I was able to stay home with both of my boys until the younger one was 4-5. We knew that we wanted to send them to a local Montessori (public charter) school, and felt that the older one was ready when he was almost 5. (His birthday is in November, so couldn't start Kindergarten until the next year.) We got on the waiting list, but were told that the chances weren't very good. About the second week of September, I got a call that there was an opening! We debated it, me not wanting to "let go" of him just yet. But, we knew we just had to because, once they're students, they're guaranteed a spot as long as they continue to be students, and our younger son would have an advantage to getting in, as well. Also, I've heard that their Kindergarten waiting list is tremendously long! So, if we waited, we would run the risk of him not getting in.

Now, he's in First Grade, and his brother is in his first year. And, DS5 is in the same classroom that DS7 just left! So, DS5 already knew the teacher and several of the students. It was a terribly easy transition!

NOW, I've gotten into the mix! I was able to get a job as an Assistant Teacher in one of the 4th-6th grade classes. I LOVE it! I'm working very hard with the co-principals to go to Teacher Training for Middle School.

I love the level of respect that the students are given, which directly leads to the high expectations we have for them. And, even with those high expectations, they often STILL amaze me!

My boys love going to school, and their teachers love them. I honestly couldn't ask for more! And, I love that it's perfectly fine for me to truly love my students. I can give them hugs when they need it, talk with them about their personal problems, and ask them a question, if I don't know the answer. It's a far cry from the public schools I attended growing up!

And, as Dr. Montessori said, “One test of the correctness of educational procedure is the happiness of the child.”

But, don't assume that this schooling method is "The Right Way" for all students. If a child truly isn't able to be self-directed and self-motivated, this might actually add more stress to them. We have a couple of 4th-graders who are too used to the rigidity of traditional schools. So far, it seems to still be a toss-up as to if they can loosen up and be responsible for their own work. I'm working as hard as I can with them, though!


Edited to add: I forgot to mention that I live in Phoenix, AZ, and would welcome anyone from the area contacting me!
03-20-2008 04:42 PM
bdoody11 I'm a Montessori child, DD of a Montessory preschool teacher, and now a Montessori Mom!

I knew I would be sending DD to daycare at 3 months and I was really dragging my feet finding childcare. The thought of leaving her with strangers was too much for me-- and she wasn't even born yet!

A friend mentioned casually that a Montessori school in town had an infant program. It also happened that the Admissions Director was my 6th grade teacher and his wife works with my Mom at her Montessori school.

I visited and I liked it, frankly I didn't have an alternative so I enrolled her. Well, 10 months later I'm soooo glad I've chosen Montessori for my daughter. I love the staff-- they are so caring and they love, love, love the babies. They kiss and hug them, are always respectful of me and DD, and are just the kindest and most dedicated teachers.

DD has blossomed under their care. She is such a smart, energetic and lovely little girl (although I like to think I had something to do with this too ). She will move up to the Toddler Room in August. I'm already mourning the loss of our current teachers. I think it's going to be harder for me than for her.

She will most likely stay in Montessori through preschool (the school goes up to 8th grade). We are undecided as whether we will send her to public school or private, Catholic school (DH's wish) for K-12. We figure we have a lot of time so we're not rushing to any decisions just yet.

It's nice to meet other Montessori parents!
03-19-2008 08:18 PM
Lousli Have I replied here yet? If not, it is because I'm currently in the midst of elementary AMI training at Loyola College of Maryland. :

I am being sponsored by my school back in California and will return there at the end of May when I graduate.

I have 2 kids, 3 and 6, both currently attending Mater Amoris Montessori here in Maryland; one in primary, one in elementary. They will both be attending my school back home too, although I won't have either one in my class.

Prior to Montessori I taught public school for 5 years.
03-18-2008 02:47 AM
MattBronsil Welcome to the board, Nora.
03-18-2008 12:51 AM
NoraC Here's my first post to the forum. I have three children under 6 and the two oldest are in a Montessori school -- one in K and the other in his first year of preschool. The youngest starts preschool in Sept. We started looking into preschool options when our oldest was about 1 and Montessori seemed to be a good fit with our family. The children are currently in a school that goes to Grade 7 so for now, we think that we'd like them to continue there until then.
03-13-2008 12:42 AM
Flor
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freedom72 View Post
Can you tell me the name of the Charter in Santa Maria? I tried to search for it online and couldn't find it.

Yes...the Santa Ynez valley is ripe for one, indeed!
http://www.tchmontessori.org/about.html


Here it is. A lot of sources still list it as a private school because the change was recent, and well, it is still partly private.

Come start a school in SYV! I want to move there but I want ds to stay in Montessori.
03-12-2008 03:55 PM
*Amy*
Quote:
Originally Posted by mightymoo
So know her so well as I know myself, I knew Montessori would fit her perfectly and it has
mightymoo, would you mind explaining some of her personality traits that make Montessori a great fit for her?
03-11-2008 05:34 PM
honeybee I'm a mom who did some research and visited different schools, and was really impressed with a local ps M, so now I drive my 4 yo from the suburbs into the city to go to his M school.
03-07-2008 04:28 PM
freistms
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattBronsil View Post
The director of your school is originally from Cincinnati. I'm guessing she just probably wanted to come back. I think, at least. I recognize the name, but cannot put a face to it. I think she used to run Summit Country Day's Montessori school for years. I may be mistaken, however.

Matt
Nope, that's her. She was the "principal" of the Montessori program there for 12ish years. Not that that's important to us. She was totally awesome, the execution was impeccable, and my girls hit it off with her from the get-go. That was what was important to us.
03-06-2008 09:28 PM
MattBronsil
Quote:
Originally Posted by freistms View Post
I visited the program at St. Rita's. The preprimary program was extraordinary and I would have loved to have put my older DD in it. The toddler program is not Montessori, though. We still would have done it, but the waitlists were a mile long.

I visited the Montessori Center for Lifelong Learning, but was not impressed by the program for either toddler or preprimary. The environment was not "well prepared," if you get my drift.
I really had never seen it. I know many schools are like that. I knew about St. Rita's 3-6 program and wondered how their Toddler program was and whether it's Montessori. Glad to know they at least have a good program. Only reason I know Montessori Center for Lifelong Learning was because I was searching CMS's web site for other programs.

Quote:

I had read good things about but did not visit Terry's. It was probably next on my list of places to see, but then we found our dream school.


Can't argue with finding that.

The director of your school is originally from Cincinnati. I'm guessing she just probably wanted to come back. I think, at least. I recognize the name, but cannot put a face to it. I think she used to run Summit Country Day's Montessori school for years. I may be mistaken, however.

Matt
03-06-2008 12:25 PM
freistms I visited the program at St. Rita's. The preprimary program was extraordinary and I would have loved to have put my older DD in it. The toddler program is not Montessori, though. We still would have done it, but the waitlists were a mile long.

I visited the Montessori Center for Lifelong Learning, but was not impressed by the program for either toddler or preprimary. The environment was not "well prepared," if you get my drift.

I had read good things about but did not visit Terry's. It was probably next on my list of places to see, but then we found our dream school.

(This is the lady who runs the school we chose: http://www.ucschools.com/2007newsrel..._Director.html Not sure what happened at Ursuline, though . . . She started this new school just this fall.)
03-06-2008 12:10 AM
Freedom72
Quote:
Originally Posted by Flor View Post
My son goes to the school in Lompoc, but the one that is charter for grades 1-8 and private for primary is the school in Santa Maria. I teach English in public school here, and I was thinking of getting some sort of Montessori training, but the school here has just 2 teachers and they 've both been working there for 20 years! So, not a lot of job openings. I think the Santa Ynez Valley is ripe for a Montessori school, but so far there isn't one.
Can you tell me the name of the Charter in Santa Maria? I tried to search for it online and couldn't find it.

Yes...the Santa Ynez valley is ripe for one, indeed!
03-05-2008 04:29 PM
MattBronsil
Quote:
Originally Posted by freistms View Post
Actually, I found it incredibly difficult to locate good toddler programs in Cincy. We were about ready to give up. I think it must be because XU doesn't have a toddler training program? But for the number of M programs (abundant), I was surprised by how few toddler programs were available. I guess we probably still have more than the average city, though, just because Cincy is Montessori-rich due to the education climate.
Toddler programs are just hard to run from a financial standpoint. Xavier is not a cheap college and there is not enough of a demand of people that will pay Xavier's tuition that will end up working in an Infant/Toddler environment. Less trained teachers in the area = less programs.

They would love to expand, but the next step would probably be to expand to a 9-12 program. Right now, there is simply no room for that.

2 Toddler Programs I can think of off the top of my head are Terry's Montessori (which I LOVE their Toddler Program) and one that I can't seem to remember if their toddler program is Montessori...St. Rita's. I have never visited it, but it has one of the best reputations in the area. (It's a school for the deaf). I know they have a 3-6 Montessori classroom.

Montessori Center for Learning has one, but not familiar with that school very well.

I'm sure there are others I am not familiar with.
03-05-2008 04:07 PM
freistms Actually, I found it incredibly difficult to locate good toddler programs in Cincy. We were about ready to give up. I think it must be because XU doesn't have a toddler training program? But for the number of M programs (abundant), I was surprised by how few toddler programs were available. I guess we probably still have more than the average city, though, just because Cincy is Montessori-rich due to the education climate.
03-05-2008 01:30 PM
MattBronsil
Quote:
Originally Posted by freistms View Post
Just thought I would join in the fun! My ODD is in a Montessori school this year. Next year we are moving to Cincinnati, and we signed a contract with a new school last week. The very exciting part is that they have a toddler program, so both of my DDs will get to experience Montessori. Our lifestyle at home is Montessori-inspired, so I am fairly confident that my YDD will thrive in an M classroom, too. Besides the toddler program, the other thing that is very attractive about this school is that they do Montessori all day (instead of before and after care).
There are some really good Montessori Toddler programs in Cincinnati.

Matt
03-05-2008 12:31 PM
xumom
Quote:
Originally Posted by MattBronsil View Post
Your name is xumom. Are you from Cincinnati? Do you go to Xavier? Do your children go to Xavier? What's the connection to "XU?" (Just an assumption that it's Xavier)
Matt

I am not originally from Cincinnati, but I did graduate from Xavier. I now live in the 'burbs, which is also where my kids attend a Montessori school.
03-05-2008 10:54 AM
freistms Just thought I would join in the fun! My ODD is in a Montessori school this year. Next year we are moving to Cincinnati, and we signed a contract with a new school last week. The very exciting part is that they have a toddler program, so both of my DDs will get to experience Montessori. Our lifestyle at home is Montessori-inspired, so I am fairly confident that my YDD will thrive in an M classroom, too. Besides the toddler program, the other thing that is very attractive about this school is that they do Montessori all day (instead of before and after care).
03-04-2008 02:25 PM
dancebaraka Hi all!
I am mostly a lurker around these parts. I have a 10 mo old daughter and we have been practicing montessori from the start. She has thrived! She walks to her little chair and sits at her first table. It is really amazing to watch her develop and explore her world. I look forward to her attending an M school at 3 if she's ready. Until then, we are enjoying creating prepared environments for her at home and supporting her in exploring her world. As a side note, I was a sensitive child and my Mama scraped up some money to send me to an M school for a brief time as a child as I was not thriving in the regular school. I was only able to attend for a year, but I remember more about that year than many of the school years that came after it. I studied french and ballet and algebra and georgraphy at the ripe age of 6. Regular school felt like an insult after that. I was engaged and present at M school, and it made a huge impression on me. This is why I started to study M in pregnancy and have incoporated it into our dd's life. It just makes so much sense to me! Nice to get to know everyone better here!
03-03-2008 03:36 PM
Flor
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freedom72 View Post
Hi Flor, I am in Temecula, but our new building will be in Murrieta, 8 miles north. I am an hour north of San Diego, but inland a bit, if you didn't know...the desert!

You are south of Santa Maria...is that Santa Barbara? I lived there for 10 years and LOVED it.

They have an AMI school in Lompoc, but I believe that it is all private...is that the one you are talking about (though I believe that is slightly south of Santa Maria).
!
My son goes to the school in Lompoc, but the one that is charter for grades 1-8 and private for primary is the school in Santa Maria. I teach English in public school here, and I was thinking of getting some sort of Montessori training, but the school here has just 2 teachers and they 've both been working there for 20 years! So, not a lot of job openings. I think the Santa Ynez Valley is ripe for a Montessori school, but so far there isn't one.
03-03-2008 01:20 PM
MattBronsil
Quote:
Originally Posted by mom4emnxani View Post
The children also respected the adults but more from the behavior being modeled for them rather than a forced kind of thing. YKWIM? Obviously, the educational part of Montessori is wonderful but I am so happy our children will be respected as individuals and for just being themselves. As a stay at home mother who has spent very little time away from my children, this is a huge comfort to me.
I'm not sure I've communicated very well, (little people are busy around me) suffice to say, I am excited for dd to be starting school in the fall and will be coming around here to talk to and learn from all of you.
Aha! And there is the inspiration for my new blog.

Going to go write it now.

EDIT: Ok. It's 12:40 AM here and I started to write it. I ran out of steam.

I'm going to start a new thread on the topic and maybe get some input. See if I can pick this up in the morning.
03-03-2008 12:36 PM
Freedom72 Hi Flor, I am in Temecula, but our new building will be in Murrieta, 8 miles north. I am an hour north of San Diego, but inland a bit, if you didn't know...the desert!

You are south of Santa Maria...is that Santa Barbara? I lived there for 10 years and LOVED it.

They have an AMI school in Lompoc, but I believe that it is all private...is that the one you are talking about (though I believe that is slightly south of Santa Maria).

I must say that I have friends who send their kids to the AMI school in Santa Barbara, and the elementary program sounds very "clickish." They are so into "not intervening," that there are kids who are unkind to each other. Also, what is weird is that the kids are very aware of what grade level they are in, and only play with the kids in their grade. For example, first grade only plays with first grade. At my school, no one even knows what grade the other kids are in, nor do they care!
03-02-2008 11:58 PM
Flor [QUOTE=Freedom72;10669121]



We have students in grades K-7 (soon to be grade 8), and a thriving community of 135 students currently. We have grades 1-3 together, grades 4-6 (with 2 seventh graders because we plan to add a middle school next year and wanted to allow them to stay for that), but Kinder is by themselves because CA law in public school does not allow preschool to be attached to Kindergarten...though that might soon change.
We just had a poetry jam yesterday, where students who chose to do so
Letty
QUOTE]

There is a Montessoir school just north of here in Santa Maria that is a private school for primary and a public charter grade 1+. I didn't understand why, but it probably has to do with that law. How interesting.

Can I ask what area of Calif. you are in?
03-02-2008 05:44 PM
dready_betty Wow, Letty, what an inspiration you are! Your school sounds like a great place to be. I too feel like a fish out of water (I'm in central Oklahoma), but the good thing is, there's always something to work on, whether it's the way we teach or the way we eat...anyways keep up the good work!
03-02-2008 04:58 PM
Mom2lilpeeps Hello all, I have been lurking around here for quite some time reading and learning. I have two little people and have been looking at Montessori for their education since infancy. We finally went to the Children's House to observe and learn more about the school. We are really sure that this is the right fit for our family. Our little girl (soon to be 4) will be starting in the fall. Our little boy (just turned 3) will probably not start until next year sometime. We have some self maintainance issues to work on with the little guy. I appreciate all the suggested reading that I've learned about here. It has been instrumental in helping us make an informed decision. The one thing that impressed me about the Children's House our little people will be attending was the respect the adults have for the children. I was amazed! The children also respected the adults but more from the behavior being modeled for them rather than a forced kind of thing. YKWIM? Obviously, the educational part of Montessori is wonderful but I am so happy our children will be respected as individuals and for just being themselves. As a stay at home mother who has spent very little time away from my children, this is a huge comfort to me.
I'm not sure I've communicated very well, (little people are busy around me) suffice to say, I am excited for dd to be starting school in the fall and will be coming around here to talk to and learn from all of you.
03-02-2008 04:44 AM
MattBronsil
Quote:
Originally Posted by Freedom72 View Post
I hear horror story after horror story all of the time about the punishments/rewards, the high pressure, the timed testing, etc. We may not have a 3 hour work cycle, but we have a 2 hour one ( because we share the building with another program and have to schedule lunch in a certain manner...but next year we get our own building....yaay! . My teachers might not all have the best training from the most amazing centers, but they allow the students to work at their own pace, offer a variety of lessons, and create enjoyable environments where the students are happy and thriving.
That is all we can do. That and keep working to make it better.

Quote:
PS..Matt...I have a myspace, though nothing really about my work, more my personal life..I'm gonna look you up!

Great I have not logged on in a while. I am very busy lately. I need to blog again soon. Miss it.
03-01-2008 06:17 PM
Freedom72 Hi Matt, I haven't been on her for FOREVER, but I am AMS trained in 6-9, though I hope to start AMI training THIS SUMMER! I am the director of a Montessori Charter School program in California, which Istarted 3 years ago because when I moved to this area, there were no Montessori schools and I saw my youngest daughter struggling in traditional. I was working at an independent study charter, asked my boss if I could start a Montessori Academy, and whalla...it was born!

We are very funky in that the students attend school 3 days and homeschool 2 days. I know even the AMI purists have been scratching their heads, as Maria never did say that school had to be 5 days a week, nor did anyone else, for that matter, so this is quite a paradigm shift. I have teachers who are AMS trained, AMI trained, and a couple of online training folks who were apprentices to us and came on because it is VERY hard to find someone who has a CA teaching credential AND Montessori experience.

Funny enough, I have one AMS trained teacher who is the most "traditional" teacher I have (and I am gently shifting her to my vision of the philosophy), and one teacher who is just getting her training, but has the spirit that I am looking for. So, her math presentations are more traditional because she is still learning the materials, but she really allows the students to pursue their own interests.

We have students in grades K-7 (soon to be grade 8), and a thriving community of 135 students currently. We have grades 1-3 together, grades 4-6 (with 2 seventh graders because we plan to add a middle school next year and wanted to allow them to stay for that), but Kinder is by themselves because CA law in public school does not allow preschool to be attached to Kindergarten...though that might soon change.

This has been a very big endeavor, my life's work, I suppose. I feel that I was called to bring this to this area of the world, where people are so traditional in their views (I'm in southern cal, but not in the most progressive part of the world). I was talking to an AMI teacher from Texas the other day, who just may come and join us for our middle school classroom next year. I explained to him that, on the continuum, we are not where is school is, or where we want to be, and yet we are so far from where many of these students came from, in traditional settings.

I hear horror story after horror story all of the time about the punishments/rewards, the high pressure, the timed testing, etc. We may not have a 3 hour work cycle, but we have a 2 hour one ( because we share the building with another program and have to schedule lunch in a certain manner...but next year we get our own building....yaay! . My teachers might not all have the best training from the most amazing centers, but they allow the students to work at their own pace, offer a variety of lessons, and create enjoyable environments where the students are happy and thriving.

We just had a poetry jam yesterday, where students who chose to do so presented works of poetry to an audience...it was grand. I am trying like heck to get away from this area because I'm a hippie/earthy gal, living in a place that sometimes feels like a foreign land, and I feel that I have one more year, and I hope that I can again start a school in an area where I would more like to live. Also, I am a single parent, and am tired of being on my own, would like to find someone to share my life with, and that is NOT happening in this neck of the woods, where it is quite conservative and so forth... .

Yes this is long, but I type as fast as I think... .

Letty
PS..Matt...I have a myspace, though nothing really about my work, more my personal life..I'm gonna look you up!
02-29-2008 12:17 AM
dready_betty Hello, fellow Montessori enthusiasts! My name is Anna and I have recently re-discovered Montessori, as a teacher-to-be. I attended Montessori Primary 20 years ago (I'm 23 now), "grew up", went to college and earned a degree in Environmental Studies. My dream of becoming an organic farmer hasn't worked out too well, so I have been further exploring my other passion, which is working with kids! I am currently substitute teaching in public schools - all ages and subjects but mostly special ed. I love the kids but have been really disturbed by a lot of things I saw going on academically and bureaucratically...in other words, things the adults, not the kids, were doing. Anyways, I started to read about Montessori (hence the "rediscovering") and fell in love! I have recently applied to AMS teacher training for Primary...and I haven't been this excited about anything in a really long time. Everything I have read about in my many Montessori books (currently reading and loving "Montessori: The Science Behind the Genius") reflects what I believe as a student and a teacher, a longtime babysitter, and a future parent.

My current obsession is the concept of the Erdkinder, Dr. Montessori's farm run by the teenagers...the book I mentioned above has a brief bit on it, but not a lot. Anyone know of some good explanations/resources for more info on this? Or anyone had experience with an actual school doing this?
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