Monday, July 24, 2017

Why is Preschool Important

Why is Preschool Important

Montessori preschool - Fremont Montessori

Preschool isn’t mandatory, but that doesn't mean younger children should be left out of structured learning. While many assume that the “real” learning begins in kindergarten, early childhood education could actually be one of the most important parts of your child’s academic journey. Here are three of the most important reasons to consider preschool for your kids.

Preschool Prepares Kids for Classroom Settings

This benefit is pretty simple, but it’s important. When young kids spend time in a structured academic environment, they learn how to operate as students. They get experience with everything from following classroom rules and verbal instructions to ignoring distractions and paying attention. If some skills or rules don’t come easily, they deserve time to work on it before they’re expected to sit down and learn math or science. After all, children adapt to new routines and settings at their own pace. Early childhood education helps lay a foundation for a smoother transition to elementary school.

Preschool is the First Step toward Self-Sufficiency

Your preschool-age kids are probably “growing up too fast” already, and it’s natural to bristle at the thought of sending them off to school for the first time. However, your ultimate goal as parents is to prepare them for the real world, and it’s never too early to start learning independence and self-sufficiency. In preschool, kids are expected to contribute and engage in basic tasks for the first time, teaching them self-care and giving them a sense of accomplishment and independence. They must wash their hands, keep their stuff in their cubbies, contribute to classroom chores, and listen to their peers. These skills will make it easier for them to make independent decisions and take care of themselves later.

Preschool Exposes Kids to Language at a Crucial Time

Whether or not a young child is ready for reading lessons, they are constantly absorbing the linguistic cues around them. Vocal development begins before their first birthday, when they start producing and repeating syllables, and by age five, most children have learned thousands of words and mastered their language’s sound system. These early years provide the foundation for your child’s literacy skills later on, and preschool programs expose them to new letter and word patterns to encourage vocal development. As teachers read books aloud and kids sing or chant rhyming phrases together, their young minds begin recognizing crucial patterns and sounds, which could boost their reading comprehension and expressive language skills later.

At the Montessori School of Flagstaff Sunnsyide Campus, we understand the significance of early childhood education. We believe that all children, especially our youngest and most “absorbent” students, thrive when they have the opportunity to learn at their own pace in a stimulating environment. That’s why we offer five different preschool and kindergarten programs for ages three to six, all emphasizing lessons and sensory experiences that enrich your young children's lives while developing a strong foundation for their future.  Contact us today to schedule a tour!

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Teaching your Preschooler Responsibility through Age Appropriate Chores

Teaching your Preschooler Responsibility through Age Appropriate Chores

helping - Fremont West

One of the hallmarks of a Montessori preschool program is that children are expected to do many things for themselves, such as cleaning, pouring, and serving food. Older or more proficient children help the younger children or those who are new to the program. To an outside observer, the classroom at clean-up time or lunch time might look like a community of tiny adults, all doing their part to achieve a common goal.

The Benefits of Chores

Maria Montessori's philosophy was that children learn and thrive when given age-appropriate responsibilities and independence. Children can learn a sense of responsibility - to their duties as well as to others - from an early age.

You can bring her approach home by assigning age-appropriate chores, and helping your children learn to perform them independently. Assigning chores at home will allow you to:
  • Make your child feel like a functional part of the household. Children love knowing they help the household run smoothly. It can make them feel especially good to do chores such as helping to take care of household pets.
  • Help your child develop self-confidence. Accomplishing something makes you feel good, right? Children are no different. Doing a job well and receiving recognition for it will help your child develop self-esteem and a sense of pride in their work.
  • Teach your child life skills. Work is an important part of life. We all have "chores" we do on a daily basis, from necessary household tasks to our careers. Encouraging children to help out around the house and to take pride in their accomplishments will help instill a strong work ethic at an early age.

Age Appropriate Chores for Preschoolers

Many preschoolers want to do things themselves and assigning chores gives you an opportunity to take advantage of that natural eagerness to help. If your child has never done chores before, start with small chores, adding one at a time. Take the time to teach your child how to do things that are difficult for them at first, as it'll pay off in the long run.
Here are a few responsibilities that are age-appropriate for preschoolers:
  • Cleaning up toys
  • Feeding pets
  • Making their bed
  • Getting dressed in the morning
  • Getting ready for bed at night
  • Putting away folded clothes
  • Folding easy-to-fold clothes
  • Wiping up spills
  • Watering plants
  • Helping with cooking
  • Measuring ingredients for baking
  • Washing produce
  • Setting the table
  • Serving, pouring, etc.

Teaching Responsibility at Home and at School

Teaching your child to do chores at home will help teach responsibility, but it's only half the story. As much as we as parents like to think we control everything about our children's upbringings, don't forget that they spend at least half their day at school. The right school will reinforce the same values you emphasize at home.

At Montessori Children's House, students are encouraged to work together throughout their day, thereby showing them that each person is equally responsible in their own learning.  For more information on how our Montessori programs encourage responsibility, a love of learning, and other important life skills, contact us today to take a tour of our school.

Friday, July 14, 2017

The Influence of the Montessori Elementary School

The Influence of the Montessori Elementary School

The Montessori classroom is a truly unique learning environment where children are encouraged to think outside of the box. Approaching the learning process with enthusiasm and providing real-life activities to supplement the classroom, children tend to thrive and reach new levels of understanding when attending a Montessori school. But that's just the beginning of the differences and influences found in a Montessori elementary school.

The Montessori Influence

Learning isn't something you do for good grades - it is a way of life at Montessori schools. With many students going on to become life long seekers of knowledge, this educational system proudly provides students with the learning abilities they need to be successful in their adult life.

Students are encouraged to learn at their own pace and style, which is what gives them the time to discover their own interests while still being guided by an instructor. It also gives the student a sense of autonomy that eventually translates into valuable time management skills, accountability, and so much more. Here are some ways Montessori elementary schools influence students, parents, and the community as a whole.

Respect and Understanding: Every student is treated like the unique individual they are at a Montessori school. And at the same time, they are taught – through a variety of activities – how to respect and value other people's differences.

Increased Creativity: When children are given free-access to explore the limits of their learning potential, they start to understand how beneficial and fun learning can be. This opens up their minds to new ideas and possibilities on a daily basis which nourishes both the intellectual and creative side of their personality.

Freedom within Limits: With classrooms, curriculum, and daily routines all built to support the emergence of self-discipline, restraint, and independence, Montessori students are taught to think for themselves and regulate their own time, with some guidance along the way.

The Montessori Difference

Montessori elementary schools help children develop skills that last a life time. Through independent learning, flexible schedules, and self-discipline, the child learns how to adapt and grow in response to a wide variety of real-life situations.

Social Development

Montessori schools also go to great lengths to build strong, small communities in every classroom. Social development is just as important as any other skill in life, but the student cannot explore this aspect of themselves unless they have an environment where they feel comfortable and welcome at all times. This kind of support increases a child's self esteem and builds the confidence they need to face the world as an adult.

Every moment in a child's life is precious. Montessori recognizes this by creating learning programs that focus on the big picture of life, rather than simply memorizing facts from a textbook. The goal is to help children become self-sufficient and self-actualized in all areas of their life.

The elementary school program at the Montessori School of Pleasanton embraces students' individuality and encourages them to work at their own pace, while being guided by teachers and peers.  Our students learn independence as they freely move about the classroom and explore on their own.  Contact us today to meet our teachers and schedule a tour.