Choosing the right preschool for your child is important. After all, it’s their first steptowards a bright and brilliant future. While both Montessori and kindergarten aim to provide learning experiences for young children, thereare some key differences between the two. From teaching methods to classroom environments, everything plays a key role in shaping your child’s behaviour, personality and language development. If you’re crunched for time and need a little help to understand which education system is right for your child, this blog should help.
Montessori School vs Traditional Preschool – Which Is Better?
Choosing your child’s first school can be both exciting anddaunting. With so many preschools, it’s natural to get confused. Once you understand the differences between a Montessori school and a traditional preschool, it will be easier to make an informed decision on behalf of your child.
Each preschool has its own educational philosophy that guides its workflow. However, there are some basic differencesbetween all Montessori and traditional preschools.
Each activity in a Montessorischool is thoughtfully designed to make children learn from their experiences–from how to count backwards to how to tie a shoelace. Even the way toys are arranged on the shelf has an educational purpose behind it. They don’t believe in a one-size-fits-all policy and modifytheir approach to the unique needs of every child. They focus on:
- Self-motivated and self-directed learning
- Accommodating individual needs, interests and learning pace
- One-to-one, experience-based curriculum
A teacher in a traditional preschool imparts topic-specific concepts to a group of children at the same time. While play and interaction are still important in these educational set-ups, they’re more likely to be slotted between teacher-guided lessons. This means that the students’ learning pace is determined by the teacher and their workflow. Although, teachers may work with children in small groupsin some cases, it’s still the same lesson(s) being taught to everyone. They focus on:
- Teacher-directed learning
- Structured curriculum
- Formal educational goals and objectives
Montessori classrooms have a different environment than traditional schools. While the former offers student-centred lessons and activities, the latter is more focused on teacher-centred schooling. Unlike traditional classrooms, Montessori classrooms have a range of learning materials, including sensory-based games for children at various developmental stages. Each item in a Montessori classroom is properly organized and has its own place. This makes it easier for children to explore and enhance their creativity as their understanding progresses. Moreover, children learn how to keep things in order and maintain an organized set-up for themselves and their peers. This will help them manage their career, stress and emotionsin later years.
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Teachers at a Montessori school are more like guides than teachers. Since every child is unique and has their own interests, they work with students individually to help develop their skills and build confidence. Children in Montessori schoolsget to choose their own learning path and set their own pace to achieve their goals. This develops self-reliance.
Traditional schools, on the other hand, have predetermined lessons that teachers teach within a specific timeframe; so, basically, everyone learns the same thing at the same time.While there’s nothing wrong with this system of education, it doesn’t account for the fact that kids grow and develop at their own pace. Moreover, learning in traditional preschools is based more on repetition and reward than real-life experience.
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Discipline and teaching children to behave is one of the most challenging parts of education. Montessori and traditional schools each have their own methods of teaching discipline to students. In traditional schools, the teacher acts as the primary enforcer of discipline and usually imparts it with rewards and punishments. This isn’t always the right approach, since punishments for undesirablebehaviour can sometimes do more harm than good. For example, children with behavioural problems often disobey rules unintentionally, and they need cognitive behaviouraltherapies instead of punishments.
Montessori schools, on the other hand, have a more holistic approach and help children learn discipline through self-correction. This means that students will learn from their own mistakes, rather than someone else pointing themout.Children make both good and bad choices. While good choices are always applauded,badones are viewed as an opportunity to develop their problem-solving skills.
Children are naturally inquisitive and have a strong desire to learn and practice. When encouraged to explore and assess from an early age,they grow up to become independent thinkers who can manage their time and work efficiently. At Trillium School we focus on nurturing your child’s natural inquisitiveness and love for learning instead of imposing unnecessary restrictions on them.
To learn more,contact us today to schedule a tour of our school.