One of the most important questions you are going to ask yourself when deciding on a school for your child is the kind of education you want them to receive. You may even be part of a growing group of parents who understand that education is multi-faceted, that traditional schooling doesn’t always work. That is why you are looking for a Montessori school in Philadelphia like Fishtown Montessori—because you want to know if the curriculum is right for your child.
Is Montessori a Good Fit For You?
Before you decide if your child will succeed in Montessori, you also need to ask yourself if you believe in the philosophy. Parents who feel that Montessori is right for their child often disagree with the following statements:
- Children should be pushed to learn.
- Competition prepares students for the real world.
- School should not be fun.
- Rote memorization is crucial to learning.
- Teachers should retain strict control over the classroom and every child’s attention.
- Testing is an accurate measure of competency.
- Receiving the highest level of academic achievement is prized. There is a high expectation of success.
- Parents should not have to play a major role in the formal education of the child.
A Montessori classroom is not your typical educational environment, and the programs don’t require students to sit for long hours, suffering through lectures. If you want your child to be creative, to think critically, and to be able to navigate real life situations, then you will appreciate how a Montessori classroom is conducted.
Ask yourself these questions:
- Do I want my child to be independent, self-motivated, and polite?
- Do I want my child to learn practical life skills, like cooking, cleaning, and gardening?
- Do I want to give my child the opportunity to be mentored and learn from older and younger peers?
- Do I want my child to have the freedom to select their own work and develop their own personal interests?
- Do I want to play an active role in my child’s education, such as using Montessori practices at home?
Answering yes to any of them (or all of them) means you should look into a local Montessori school.
View this post on Instagram
How to Tell if Montessori is Right For Your Child
Now let’s discuss the other important factor in all this—your child. The Montessori education was designed to be flexible enough to accommodate a range of temperaments, learning styles, personalities, and capabilities. Even children who have difficulty concentrating on a single activity for too long can join a Montessori classroom and thrive. The transition might be difficult for them at first, but with the support of the teacher and their friends, these students can become more independent and diligent.
Montessori has a unique and compassionate approach to education that supports the individual:
- The child-centered classroom focuses on strengthening skills rather than focusing on limitations. Child are allowed to study according to what interests them, so they are never bored by what they are learning.
- Play-based learning and the use of imagination helps with the formation of concrete life skills.
- All work is self-directed; the teachers work to provide guidance to smaller groups rather than demand attention from the entire classroom.
- Classrooms are multi-aged (for example, ranging from 3-5 year olds), giving older students a chance to lead and mentor their younger peers.
You might wonder how this helps your child, so here is an example. Imagine a child who yells inside when they need something, or who leaves their toys scattered on the bedroom floor. The Montessori classroom will teach the child how to use an appropriate volume when speaking to others and to put away materials once they are done.
A child who doesn’t require external motivations will enjoy a Montessori classroom, as will the student who gets agitated during testing. On the other hand, children who come from a disorganized or inconsistent setting may find it hard to adapt to the structure and routine of a Montessori school. However, some children find the prepared environment reassuring and soothing.
The key takeaway is this: Montessori schools are highly adaptable and can be an ideal fit for many families. If you believe in the basic principles, there is an excellent chance that your child will love Montessori, too.
Looking for a Montessori School?
Montessori schools are an excellent fit for any personality type, because the system is designed to assist with an individual’s learning and development. Through continuous experiences and challenges, every child can grow at their own pace. Furthermore, children receive continued encouragement and respect, giving them autonomy and competence that is rarely taught in traditional school settings.
If you think Montessori is a good fit for your child and want to observe a class, give Fishtown Montessori a call. Every program is led by a fully certified teacher and is designed for younger children to thrive. Give us a call to learn more or to schedule your virtual tour.