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To think Montessori is massively overhyped?
231

Sherekhancarolbaskin · 19/01/2022 01:38

Or does it truly have proven pedagogic advantages?

I’m already not a fan of the Waldorf Steiner method at all.

Montessori does seem a lot better to me but after having looked into it a lot of it seems a bit off to me. Besides the fact Maria Montessori did questionable things as a parent herself, abandoning her own son

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Am I being unreasonable?

AIBU

You have one vote. All votes are anonymous.

immersivereader · 19/01/2022 01:45

Interesting thread... I know a few people who seem completely sold on Montessori, not quite sure of the appeal?

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Christoncrutches · 19/01/2022 01:47

Always struck me as pretentious nonsense…

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Battygirll · 19/01/2022 02:20

I am a qualified Montessori teacher.

I've never actually worked as a teacher as I chose a different path.

A lot of the theory is useful and makes sense.

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Thoosa · 19/01/2022 02:23

Besides the fact Maria Montessori did questionable things as a parent herself, abandoning her own son

Don’t worry. Child abandonment wasn’t incorporated into the educational theory. They maintain staffing levels.

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needmoreshinys · 19/01/2022 02:47

My son went to a Montessori nursery, they lost him.

He didn't go back

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RantyAunty · 19/01/2022 02:57

It's ok but nothing life changing.

I can't tell the difference between children who have had it or not.

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Happyhappyday · 19/01/2022 03:06

I went to Montessori and our kiddo goes. We like the emphasis on kids learning to do things themselves & developing a love of learning. It worked for my brother and I and seems to be going well for our kiddo. But also both schools were/are just very well regarded locally, I’m sure there are shit Montessori’s too.

The Montessori classrooms are also always really quiet because all the kids are totally engrossed in their activities.

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ScotInExile · 19/01/2022 03:31

My (SAHM, fairly well off) neighbour was proudly telling me about what her toddler daughter was being taught at the Montessori school that she paid $800 a month for. She had learned how to cut up carrots all by herself and sweep the floor and dust the surfaces. She was becoming so independent at 2 years old and it was all down to this wonderful school.
At the same time the mum was paying for a cleaner to clean her house and for a meal delivery service to supply her daily meals.
I couldn't get over the massive amount of money she was paying to outsource cleaning, cooking and 'educating' her child while missing a massive bonding opportunity with her.

I don't have a problem with outsourcing services if you can afford it (and she easily could), it was more that she was bragging about what her kid was learning at this expensive and unnecessary school while my similar aged child was getting messy in the kitchen baking cakes with me, making dinner and then cleaning up the mess we made side by side.
So yes, I think these schools are massively over-hyped and over priced and the educational benefits are negligible.

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LadyPropane · 19/01/2022 03:43

I think it's just one way of doing things. As much as I believe there is definitely a wrong way to parent (abuse, neglect etc) I don't think there is one "right" way.

Montessori is just one way of doing things. It has pros and cons. I don't think it is a revolutionary method of parenting/teaching.

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TheWayTheLightFalls · 19/01/2022 04:15

There is one near me - which everyone in the vicinity will recognise from my description - run by an autocratic Greek woman who absolutely hates parents, all parents, and seems to deal with children under two by strapping them into double/triple buggies and wheeling them round a small yard all day. I'm sure there are some wonderful Montessori nurseries out there but this one has done it for me.

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habibihabibi · 19/01/2022 04:27

Modern early childhood provisions incorporate a lot of Montessori concepts. When it was conceived 80 years ago, it was revolutionary..now not so much. The wooden learning materials are beautiful though.

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LaurensILikeYouALot · 19/01/2022 04:36

Modern early childhood provisions incorporate a lot of Montessori concepts. When it was conceived 80 years ago, it was revolutionary..now not so much. The wooden learning materials are beautiful though.

Yes, I agree with this.

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CakeRabbit · 19/01/2022 05:37

It makes no difference once they’re older. You can’t tell which children are Montessori and which aren’t.

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PAFMO · 19/01/2022 05:46

@habibihabibi

Modern early childhood provisions incorporate a lot of Montessori concepts. When it was conceived 80 years ago, it was revolutionary..now not so much. The wooden learning materials are beautiful though.

Yes, I agree with this too. Nowadays, letting kids get dirty and stick their hands in their dinner/paintpot/garden outside is the norm in that age group.
100 years ago it wasn't.
A friend of mine is a Montessori teacher (not in the UK). They do almost exactly the same things a nursery school in the UK would do plus some camping and hiking. (They're in Switzerland)

@Scotinexile
ALL nurseries foster independence if they are good. That's part of their job description. And, lightbulb moment, despite working and having children in childcare, most parents bond with their children just fine. So off you pop with your nasty attitude towards people who do things differently to you.
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imip · 19/01/2022 05:47

There are some ‘pure’ Montessori practitioners and then others who incorporate some of the principles. And as pp has said - many principles now are incorporated into mainstream education.

It is as varied as different mainstream schools and like any misery, you still have to be comfortable with the individual setting and it’s practitioners.

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imip · 19/01/2022 05:48

Nursery, not misery!

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Curlyreine · 19/01/2022 06:00

I am a (British) Montessori (elementary) teacher. (Coincidentally in Switzerland too!)

Happy to answer any questions as best I can, but if I would always recommend that you do some research, and read some of her books/papers.

I don't agree with the cult/purist side of things but I do massively appreciate the materials, the programme and the autonomy of the children.

You can see the difference in the children... Children who join our school from the public system are not autonomous and we have to spend a lot of time getting them into the habit of choosing their own work, rather than waiting to see what the teacher will give them for that day. They really struggle to work for themselves, rather than the praise of an adult. The maths program is incredible and very advanced of the public curriculum. Plus a large part of the program is to build a community spirit and create a balanced adult.

But, in the UK, the education system is very child centred, which is mainly why you don't see many 6-12 elementary schools in the UK. My sister is a teacher in the UK, and we often bounce ideas of each other. There are pros and cons for both approaches.

As PP said, it was revolutionary when it came out. But not all educational systems are as great as the British one, (I find the local schools here and in France quite Victorian), and also, not all children learn the same way.


(I am not a fan of the Steiner system, personally.)

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Curlyreine · 19/01/2022 06:06

@PAFMO I agree with you here. Whilst I was a SAHM with my children here, I opened up playgroups. Just the typical British playgroups. It was incredibly successful as I did lots of messy play, something which is just not seen as the norm here. I remember one of the mums said to me 'this is why we pay you the big bucks, so we don't have to do it at home.'

I also incorporated a lot of forest school policies and practices. Again, this is the basics in the UK education system, but Switzerland is not quite there yet. (There are many other pros to being here though, which is why we choose to live here.)

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DropYourSword · 19/01/2022 06:10

I think, like anything, there are some great bits to it, and some not so good things.
I like how Montessori can offer the child a little more independence and allow them to focus on which skills they'd like to develop.
I really dislike the Montessori attitude towards fiction books for children.

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PAFMO · 19/01/2022 06:14

@Curlyreine.
Small world!
I work with this guy on summer language courses and he always gets the youngest ones. He's brilliant.

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EishetChayil · 19/01/2022 06:18

Everyone I know who sends their children to a Montessori nursery are absolute knobs.

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Hlglu56 · 19/01/2022 06:22

Like others have said you will find a lot of British nurseries incorporate a few of the ideas anyway. I had never heard of it until I saw a poster about it in my daughter’s nursery.

I researched it a little and joined a few Facebook groups etc but I don’t like that fiction is frowned upon. To me humans have been telling stories and fairy tales for 100s, even 1000s of years.

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rrhuth · 19/01/2022 06:26

@EishetChayil

Everyone I know who sends their children to a Montessori nursery are absolute knobs.

They think highly of you, I'm sure.
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Neurodiversitydoctor · 19/01/2022 06:30

My children went to both non Montessori and a Montessori setting. In the Montessori school they learnt far more despite the other very expensive one offering yoga and French! I believe it fosters a real love of learning who h in itself is very valuable.

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PurplePinecone · 19/01/2022 06:35

My son went to a Montessori. While he seemed happy enough, I could tell that by the end of the year he was there (3-4) he was pretty bored. My daughter goes to a pre-school and there is so many different interesting things there, gardening, arts and craft, toys to play with and learning built in. Seeing all this makes me feel bad that my son didn't get this. All the Montessori toys were aimed at learning, and I don't remember him ever doing any painting /arts etc. So yeah, I'd agree its not great. I only picked it as it was convenient at the time as it was across the road from where we used to live.

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