How important is it to complete

Discussion in 'Montessori' started by confusedmom, Jan 21, 2007.

  1. confusedmom

    confusedmom Rookie

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    Jan 21, 2007

    Hi there,
    I currently have my 4 1/2 yr old son in his second year ( full day) of Montessori and am torn on whether to keep him here or move him to public kindergarten. I can't put my finger quite on it... is he happy in this environment or not....and would he do just as well in public kindergarten.

    Academically he is doing well & mostly works well on his own. When he has behavior issues it is mostly because he wants to play and be more social/interactive. We are concerned that largely this is a result from the Montessori classroom environment /education being overly sedate & controlled.

    HOw important is it to complete the 3rd year cycle to cement the skills & learning he has already begun? Would he get this just as well in a 1/2 day Montessori class or in public school?

    Thanks for your valued opinions!
     
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  3. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Jan 21, 2007

    I am speaking from experience with my Preschool children in a private center and those who come back for half days from Montessori. The Montessori children that come back for the afternoons with me and I notice they have trouble "playing" in our centers. There are toys, dolls and trucks in a couple of centers and have a problem just "playing." So, I don't know how this might help you making a decision or not! I like both programs and have nothing against either one. These are just my observations. If I had a young child, I think I would put them in Montessori, but only if the program ran all the way to the upper grades. I would not want my child to have to change after a few years of the Montessori program and then go to a public school. They seem very different to me.
    Basically, both types of schooling are good and it all depends on the teacher.
     
  4. confusedmom

    confusedmom Rookie

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    Jan 21, 2007

    Thanks Grammy Teacher! All opinions welcomed & appreciated!

    Any other opinions out there on how valuable ( Or not) completing the third year of the Montessori program is? I've been told that it "cements everything they have learned in years 1 & 2," or "this is the year they put it all together" & helps teach the child the concepts taught by internalizing them...very tactile & hands on...vs. kindergarten that has more memorization & abstract learning than Montessori.
     
  5. Yenna

    Yenna Companion

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    Jan 22, 2007

    In my opinion, the third year is very important because the lessons presented in the first two years are indirectly preparing the child for some very important achievements in the third year. Most public schools don't teach math facts, function of words or sentence analysis in the kindergarten year. In Montessori, these subjects are presented because of the nature of the Absorbent Mind (a special quality to the child's mind in the years from birth to age 6) that allows for effortless acquisitions of knowledge. However, this is not possible without the preparations of the first two years in Montessori. In the third year, there are many lessons that are taught to small groups of 3 or 4 children, because children are more interested in socializing at this age. At 3 and 4, their work is naturally more independent (children may "parallel play" but don't play intereactively as much until 5 and 6). Do you think the PS kindergarten would be presenting lessons that your child has already covered in Montessori (like counting 1 to 10, learning alphabet sounds, etc)? If you think Montessori education is overly sedate and controlling, what do you call an educational environment that keeps children sitting in their seats all day and follows specific group lesson plans where everybody learns the same thing at the same time?
     
  6. tm91784

    tm91784 Comrade

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    Jan 22, 2007

    I agree that it would probably be difficult to switch from Montessori to public school. In my experience, I have found that public schools are usually involved more with memorization, worksheets, etc. Most of the time, they are expected to be quiet and not socialize much at all - outside of an hour lunch/recess. Montessori involves more hands-on experiences which is how children learn best.
     
  7. Grammy Teacher

    Grammy Teacher Virtuoso

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    Jan 22, 2007

    A friend of mine stopped over today and we were discussing this. Her boy is in second grade at Montessori. She said the one thing that she noticed in him since he has been in Montessori is that he doesn't play with his toys anymore. He used to build structures with his blocks and use his dinosaurs, etc. Now he mostly draws.
     
  8. daisyduck123

    daisyduck123 Companion

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    Jan 22, 2007

    Hi!

    I'm a 1st grade public school teacher. I want to let you know that it is good you are asking about this now, before your son enters Kindergarten. My only advice is to decide now and wherever you place him for Kindergarten is where he should stay.

    Every student I have had in my 1st grade who came from a Montessori Kindergarten has had a rough adjustment. I always ask (to myself of course) why, oh why, do parents put their child in a Montessori Kind. program & then a public 1st grade....it's never a good fit.
     
  9. Pattypoo

    Pattypoo Comrade

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    Jan 27, 2007

    http://www.montessori.org/story.php?id=260

    Here is a link to an article that talks about the importance of the kindergarten year. It has been my experience that most traditional teachers are thrilled to have a Montessori child in their classroom. My son attended Montessori from age 4-6th grade. He had absolutely no problems transitioning into a traditional type of school. I have never encountered any parent that had problems with their child that went from Montessori K to a traditional first grade.
     
  10. czacza

    czacza Multitudinous

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    Jan 27, 2007

    Public school kindergartens have students from a variety of backgrounds- those who went through Montessori preK, went to day care, went to a 'regular' preK, or just stayed home. They bring a variety of skills and school readiness levels. Public schools are not as yenna stated " an educational environment that keeps children sitting in their seats all day and follows specific group lesson plans where everybody learns the same thing at the same time?" Nor are they " usually involved more with memorization, worksheets, etc. Most of the time, they are expected to be quiet and not socialize much at all - outside of an hour lunch/recess. Montessori involves more hands-on experiences which is how children learn best." as tm states to have experienced.... In the districts where I have taught and currently teach, K (and subsequent grades) offer lots of hands on activities, respect individual learning styles, professional educators assess student needs and differentiate instruction and seek to facilitate learning for every student. Why don't you go tour your public school kindergarten classes? See for yourself what is going on there. Ask the kindergarten educators there what their experience has been with incoming students from Montessori preK. That way you can rest assured that whichever decision you make is one in which you feel confident because you have carefully researched and found answers to your burning questions. Good luck whatever you decide!!:love:
     
  11. confusedmom

    confusedmom Rookie

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    Jan 28, 2007

    Thank you to ALL those that responded with experience, suggestions & web links. I did meet with the public K teacher. The principal would not allow me to visit/observe the class in progress. Oddly though this teacher has been teaching for 15+ years, she has never had a mOntessori student & does not know anything of the teaching philosophy either. The class did seem like it would work fine in terms of my son enjoying the environment & social aspect of it. In terms of curriculum, there is no doubt the depth of info, especially the concepts of math is far more advanced at Montessori. Still not decided which way to go. will meet with the school director & ask his opinion...if he thinks this learning environment is right/working for my active child.
     
  12. curious

    curious Companion

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    Feb 21, 2007

    Hi, I'm curious as to how your son's Montessori classroom is "sedate & controlled"? I used to work at a Montessori school and it was a lot more flexible in terms of student learning than public schools. Maybe some Montessori schools are different, but I thought they all had a laidback type of learning structure.

    As for wondering how switching from Montessori to public school will affect your child, this is something I'm struggling with right now. My husband and my in-laws want our daughter (who's preschool-aged) to go to Montessori, but I'm hesitant because I don't think we'll be able to afford her going to Montessori for all of her elementary years. And, to me, I think it'd be difficult for her to adjust to the rigid classroom environment of a public school after having so much freedom in Montessori.
     
  13. Mr. ISB

    Mr. ISB Rookie

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    Feb 28, 2007

    I think that whatever school setting you put your child into, you, the parent should be involved. Don't let some teacher be the say all to your childs education. You, the parent, should be involved in everything that child is doing in school. Talk to your teacher about lesson plans. Not so you should change them, but so you can understand them and work with your child through those plans. It is the PARENTS responsiblitly to educate there child. Not some private school or public school.
     

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