The first time I heard about Montessori was back in Mexico. For me, Montessori sound like a hippie-Fancy method of learning, but being honest, I didn’t really care about this because 10 years ago I wasn’t interested at all on having kids. Last year in a kids party, I meet this mom, and during our conversation I mentioned to her that I was moving to White rock and she super recommended me this Montessori preschool, she said her daughter loooove her teacher and that the place was amazing, so I decided to take a look myself.
It was love at first sight! One: There was multiculturalism, I’m not racist ( Hey I’m Mexican ) but I didn’t move to Canada to have my daughter growing with only one culture, Second: She was right about the teachers, the kids seems to love them, and I can see they were very sweet but at the same time strict with them and Three: they have an amazing space including an outside space to play, so I decided to sign up Mia to get a spot in September and went home. After a couple of weeks it was Mia’s last day at her daycare and speaking with her teachers, I mentioned to them that Mia will start preschool in September in a Montessori place and suddenly I saw an expression of “not approve” in their faces, so I asked if they knew what Montessori was because me, I didn’t even investigate about it, I just like the place and sign her up, but being completely honest I didn’t do a research or anything ( yeah I know I should have ) anyways, they told me that Mia was used to a play-based environment and that they do not like Montessori teachers because for some reason they feel superior than them, so now they got my attention, and I let them continue talking about it.
I knew that Montessori was different but I didn’t know HOW different, and I didn’t know what play based daycare-preschool was ( even tho Mia was already in one and I really love her daycare ), so that day I arrived home and I started my google search. I visited like 20 different websites, I watched all of these videos regarding the life of Maria Montessori, I texted a couple of friends who happened to be Montessori Teachers and they were the ones who at the end convinced me about this type of education, even tho I love play based as well.
So here are the main differences that I found:
Montessori: Students discover information for themselves and they can work on their lessons as long as they need, the teachers helps them according to their needs and focus on develops the whole personality of the child, not merely his/her intellectual faculties.
Regular school-Play based: The information is given to them by their teachers and there is a schedule for every lesson. The teacher deliver the same lessons to everyone, and they learn on play based activities, which is very good for their imagination and social skills.
I do not believe that one is better than the other, I just think that there are several factors to consider like distance, cost, schedule, and most importantly REPUTATION! Margareth, the Director of Mia’s previous daycare, told me once that the most important thing is to find a place where the teachers love their job, to always look on the relationship among the educators and the childrens.
Also we are all different, every child and every family, only you know what would fit better in your kit. ( and if it doesn’t work you can always try the option number 2 ).