Preschool vs montessori(9 Posts)
Have 3.5yo DD who is interested in learning numbers, letters, telling time etc. (Not some sort of stupid boast, she has many irritating flaws too)
We've just relocated and she has started at new nursery with a lovely feel by quite a bit smaller and quieter than her previous one. Obviously is play-focussed.
I'm not sure what a Montessori nursery is but DM has suggested we go and view one.
I'm looking at the preschool (once it reopens after summer hols).
Does Montessori do a bit of letter recognition, counting games etc or is it very play-focussed and just has a different 'ethos' somehow?
DD will be starting school next Sept (2020)
Both the pre school and montessori nursery will work to the Early Years Foundation Stage Framework. This will include things like counting and mark making (if you haven't seen it before, take a look at the doc, it's quite useful). I decided to send ds to our village pre school so he could be amongst children he will start reception with in September. I've heard good things about montessori settings though
Montessori is a very specific philosophy, child led, uses everyday objects as "toys". Not necessarily more academic in fact could easily be the opposite. However since the introduction of eyfs there will be more in common between them.
Be cautious with Montessori. The idea is great and nothing new (and exactly what any early years setting will be doing under the EYFS framework but be aware that ANYONE can set up a Montessori school and give it that name, so the calibre and quality will vary enormously between them.
I have had children at both and one child went first to a Montessori and then moved to a preschool. My first thought is that there are some nurseries that are Montessori only in name... and some pre-schools which may well be using the same approach... or another that might be better suited to your child. I think you really need to look at each setting for it's own merits. Also, you might want to think about other areas that your child needs to develop in rather than the academic...
If it's a true Montessori Nursery they will use lots of different activities that strengthen the muscles that are needed for writing etc. There should be things like Sandpaper Numbers that they can feel the numbers and become familiar with them. There should be the same for letters too.
The learning is child led but is a strong philosophy that the EYFS is based upon. The EYFS is easy to match across to the Montessori Method.
Thanks everyone that's really helpful. I will of course go and look at both settings. Good to know it might only be 'Montessori in name' and yes indeed, we do plenty of things which are not academic. DD has always struggled with physical confidence, for example, so we do lots of climbing frames, inadvisable jumping off sofa etc, to build that up. Still won't allow anyone to push the swings while she's on though 😂
Montessori can be lacking in structure (as it's child led) so youth is may or may not work for your child. It really did not work firmly ASD sin and he was nearly expelled! He does much better in a very structured environment.
It really depends on the setting - not all Montessori settings are alike, much like all nurseries. I took DS1 (then age 2) out of an Outstanding rated Montessori pre-school where the staff were cold and disinterested, and moved him to a bog-standard pre-school with a much lower Ofsted where he was treated with warmth and care. They'll cover phonics and maths in great detail from Reception onwards so I really wouldn't worry about that at this age - just look for somewhere she will be happy and cared for and pick up social skills like sitting and listening, getting a snack, going to the toilet, taking coat on and off etc.
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