What to Expect if Your Child Goes to a Montessori Kindergarten

Posted on: 4 November 2020

Montessori schools are becoming more popular in the United States, especially for the younger grades. This is an educational style that focuses on letting children explore their own interests and learn independently. It's quite different from the style of education that has been so common in public schools over the years. As such, if you enroll your child in a Montessori kindergarten, it's good to know what to expect. Take a look.

Different ages in the same classroom.

Most Montessori schools that have more than one grade combine several grades in one classroom. So your kindergartener may be in a classroom with first and second graders. There's a good reason for this. The Montessori method emphasizes students learning from each other, and putting some older students in the room allows the younger students to learn from those older students. Even just observing how older students interact socially can help younger kids develop stronger social skills, which is a big part of kindergarten.

Play-style learning.

At Montessori schools, students don't spend a lot of time sitting at desks and writing. The education is more informal and will closely resemble play, especially for kindergarteners. Your child may learn about food groups by pretending to cook in a play kitchen. They may learn about writing by writing their own storybooks. This method keeps students engaged and interested, which is really important when they're just starting their education.

Lots of specialized activities and subjects.

A goal of the Montessori method is to let students figure out where they excel and what their passions are. As such, most Montessori kindergartens offer a lot of different activities and subjects. There may be opportunities to learn to play different instruments, play various sports, sculpt, paint, and do other activities that you wouldn't see at your typical kindergarten.

Parent-teacher collaboration.

Teachers at Montessori schools really seek to know their students, and they work on collaborating with parents. You may have monthly meetings with your child's teacher where you can collaborate on how to address any issues they are facing. You'll get a say in their education, and your say will matter. At the same time, the teacher's feedback can help you make better decisions for your child at home.

Montessori schools can be very good for young children — especially those who are independent and self-driven. Visit one of these private kindergartens in your area to see this educational model in action.