Preschool (age 2+) and primary classes (ages 3-6) do more than simply acclimate children to attending school. When you make the right choice for where your child begins their educational experience, you set them up for a future filled with academic and personal achievements.
It all starts with the foundation they’ll build upon. And this is an area where Montessori education clearly shines over traditional kindergarten-style classes. Montessori is superb at revealing the magical world of learning that draws children in, and it’s great at providing building blocks your son or daughter will use to create success later on.
Here’s what you can expect your child to experience as they attend Montessori classes rather than traditional kindergarten in their preschool and primary years.
5 Ways Montessori Excels Over Traditional Learning
Many parents place their child in standard kindergarten without thinking about it. But it’s important to be well informed about all your options—so that you can make the right decision for your child’s education.
There are many key differences between preschools, traditional kindergarten, and our authentic Montessori classrooms that you should weigh before enrolling your child in school. Here are five:
1. Child-Focused Learning Encourages Personalized Mastery
One of the biggest challenges with traditional kindergarten is that teachers must check off preassigned curriculum tasks for the whole class. In such a setting, the class moves quickly between activities without assuring everyone has achieved mastery. It’s easy for children to fall behind—and once they do, it becomes harder and harder for them to catch up and do well in the future.
Montessori’s individualized approach helps ensure your son or daughter can master the primary-level academics they will build on in later years.
- Unlike traditional schools, there are no arbitrary time limits imposed in our classes.
- Your child can work at their preferred pace to master their studies.
- There’s no cookie-cutter approach. Students that gain a skill set can move on to other activities, and those who need added time to get grounded in a set of skills can do so.
2. Children Build Hands-On Skills through a Wide Range of Activities
While both traditional and Montessori classes involve physical activities for preschool and primary age children, there’s a decided difference in how those activities are applied.
- Kindergarten classes separate play from studying, but in Montessori, every activity is purposeful and intended to promote learning—including play.
- Hands-on learning activities are designed to promote manual dexterity—which helps children retain new knowledge!
- Learning tools in Montessori classes are carefully selected to encourage the use of all five senses—helping your young child learn and grow.
3. Students Engage in Active Learning, not Passive
The word “school” likely brings to mind rows of orderly desks, with students sitting quietly (hopefully!) while a teacher writes on a chalkboard. This structure is all too common even for preschoolers and kindergarteners—but many children don’t thrive in such a regimented, passive environment.
Montessori classes encourage students to be more active in their studies, a key to ensuring children gain and retain knowledge in their younger years and develop their childhood hobbies.
- Rather than focusing solely on rote memorization, Montessori students actively explore their world through interactive activities.
- Through experimentation and firsthand discovery—such as seeing how seeds grow and tending plants—your child learns not only facts, but how those facts play out in the real world.
4. Social Development and Leadership Are Part of the Curriculum
While kindergarten and Montessori classes both invite children to interact, Montessori focuses much more on purposeful activities. Thus, the social interactions in our classes are highly effective at teaching children social graces and leadership skills.
- Children automatically practice leadership in our mixed age classes, mentoring younger children and learning to be good leaders.
- Young children can observe older ones and be inspired to emulate positive examples of gracious behavior.
- Active collaboration always has a place in Montessori classrooms, so your child gains skills in teamwork that are essential for success later on.
5. Love of Learning Is a Natural Result in Montessori Classes
Watch a young child explore their environment and learn new things, and you’ll notice something magical. Children love to learn when they are allowed to exercise self-direction and go at their own pace. Montessori is exceptional in this area because:
- In classes, your child can take the time to pursue their interests—discovering not just new skills, but their own passions and a sense of purpose.
- Invite students to work on activities until they’ve mastered them, which creates self-confidence and delight in their ability to learn.
- Children learn to focus on tasks, working through any momentary frustration until they achieve success—an essential skill for ongoing accomplishments in life.
Set Up Your Child for Future Success with the Right Early Education
One of the greatest gifts you can offer your son or daughter is a strong education that prepares them for lifelong success. That’s why it pays to enroll them in primary classes that allow them to explore their interests, learn at their pace, and develop well-rounded skills for achievement in school and in life.