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is montessori right for my child?

  1. #1
    augustbump is offline Registered User
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    is montessori right for my child?

    hi all dads and moms and caregivers

    I am currently enrolled in IMS at their new campus in Midlevels. We moved our 2 yo daughter from traditional playgroup environment to a montessori one. I have read some materials on montessori methods and understand though not in great depth the concept and philosophy behind this method of teaching.

    The question I am facing now is.. will it suit my daughter? i guess only i can determined it but i would like to know if other moms/dads are second guessing their move. I am at a cross road!

    The reasons behind all these doubts are bc these questions below:

    1) With 10 kids in the class and with each one of them doing different work materials - how does the teacher spend time with the children to show them individual attention. At best - we get 10 mins during the 1.5 hour session each day.

    2) IMS preaches bilingualism - but again.. the mandarin teacher seem to only give 5-10 mins attention to each child. Again.. how does my child get the exposure to mandarin then?

    please dont mistake me for blaming the teachers here..i understand that their hands are "tied" but i just want whats best for my child.

    3) My daughter was bored by the 4th day of school. She did not find the materials/practical life tool fascinating enough to hold her attention till the 5th day. What was sad was when she said - mama please go home! which means she wants to leave school and go home! i know that i am not supposed to read too much into all these demands.. but she has never said that to me in the 1 year of traditional playgroup.

    Please do not get me wrong that i am thinking the school is not good or not up to its standard. I just also believe that not every child is suitable for montesorri. The reason why i wanted to try it out is to let my daughter experience something different and hopefully that she will thrive and be happy there.

    There is definitely no laughters or giggles in the classroom.. i have not heard any of the 10kids seriously enjoying in the class as opposed to traditional method. Its more quiet learning, self sufficiency, independence.. all good things to instill in a child but i just realised that isnt that for older kids to learn later or am i just living in a fairy tale land?

    I do realised that i should give the school and the children sometime to adjust to the new environment and wait to see in 1-2 mths time if my child is showing signs of interest..

    i just missed the sparkle in her face going to school.. singing twinkle 2 little stars.. or am i just one of those paranoid, nutty, over protective parents?

    am i doing the right thing?

    sorry for all the rattling..i know she is only 2 and this is only prenursery - but we made lots of sacrifice to get her into this school.. just want to make it all worthwhile

    your 2 cents will be appreciative.. anyone?thanks!

  2. #2
    temajie is offline Registered User
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    i totally understand your point. i would also feel miserable to see my daughter bored at school, especially if she enjoyed another school before. i don't know what to say but i can share my experience on montessori education with you. i don't know all the details of the philosophy, i've just read a little like anybody else, but i could see my daughter was really happy when she was there. it was her first experience at school though. she spent 9 months in a montessori preschool in the us and started at 2 yo. i put her there not because i heard of montessori reputation and was decided to give her this type of teaching but because one of her playgroup friend went there and her mother was always telling me how caring and loving the teachers were and how happy her son was there. indeed i quickly felt the teachers were totally trustful and my daughter was not crying after a few days. i don't know anybody that is not satisfied with montessori school system but your question "does montessori education suit my daughter?" is interesting. actually, why could your daughter not have preferences and rather sing twinkle little star in her old school (by the way my daughter also learnt twinkle little star in her montessori preschool)? however, beyond the philosophy i think the teachers and staff really make the difference. may be she was very attached to the teachers and students in her old school and feel sad. explain to your daughter that it is just the beginning and she doesn't know yet all the people there, that she will have fun shortly. also talk with her teacher and ask her if she thinks that your daughter has enough attention as she was used to another system. may be you will see soon she gets adjusted more quickly than you thought. good luck.

  3. #3
    augustbump is offline Registered User
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    thanks temajie... will definitely need to have a conversation with the school and the teachers to help ease my muddle head. i think you gave me relevant insights to go forward.. will have to trust my instincts and also my daughter's ..

  4. #4
    starbucks2 is offline Registered User
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    I can understand what you are saying about the quiet classroom and no laughter! I had a huge debate with myself between a brand new bright Montessori school and an older regular playgroup for my 2.5 year old. I really wanted to like the Montessori one as it was so new and shiny but really, it looked so boring! The kids could only play with the Montessori puzzles (no dress ups or cars (which my son loves) or dolls). And, from what I saw, no singing or dancing or play acting. At my son's age (2.5) all I wanted was somewhere fun where he could interact with other kids and sing and play etc. I didn't want a quiet classroom where all they could do is play with puzzles on their own. I want him to learn to share toys and experiences with other kids. So I have gone with the regular playgroup. I figure he can learn independence and proper school skills when he is older. My feeling is that HK really pushes the academics on kids so young where they should just be having fun at this age. My son starts his unaccompanied regular playgroup in October so will see how he goes with that.

    Just my 2 cents worth anyway.

  5. #5
    augustbump is offline Registered User
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    hi starbucks

    yeah.. i am thinking all these conflicts in me.. is kinda depressing ... i just want a happy child.. in a happy enviroment.. i am stress out thinking of kindergarden application for my 2 year old! its crazy crazy crazy here.. the queue to get to anywhere is ridiculous and on top of that the fees is enough to send me a trip around the world!

    we are now leaning heavily on returning back to traditional playgroup.. i thot i will give it a go till end of the month.. the teachers have been very supportive i must say.. but i have to go with my instincts and what my 2 yo is telling me ...

    thanks for the 2 cents worth.. i appreciate it

  6. #6
    Woodentotsdb is offline Registered User
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    Hi Augustbump

    I am sorry to hear about this sadness your daughter is suffering at her school. And no laughter in the classroom!

    I myself am a Montessori qualified teacher and have taught children as young as 18 months. Yes, we encourage the children to be independent and allow them to work alone, but Montessori is also about being part of a community and working together. Please do not believe that all Montessori classrooms are boring and depressing.

    In my classrooms there is always communication and laughter. I also dance and sing with my children. It truly depends on the individual teacher and their practice in the classroom. I would advise you to visit other classrooms if possible and speak to different teachers. This will give you the idea of their energy.

    If all classes are the same at IMS, then it is best that you take your daughter somewhere else. She obviously needs more stimulation than what she is getting in her current class.

    I hope for your daughter sake and her happiness that you find the perfect setting for her.

  7. #7
    lesliefu is offline Registered User
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    i have just enrolled my daughter in a montessori school, she's 2, and though this is the only montessori classroom I've been exposed to (as a teacher myself), I find it fun and quite stimulating - they have puzzles, they sing, dance, learn to share, it's also bilingual (unfortunately only 1 teacher though so she switches between Eng and Mand which is the only downfall)...the philosophy etc. is great and i think it is nice to learn these things from a young age so it becomes second nature in a sense. but of course school should be a fun experience, so it could be 1) the teacher's style does not match your child's 2) your child needs more time to get to know the teacher and friends in her class....i hope do you find the perfect setting for her, because school really should be fun and exciting.

  8. #8
    augustbump is offline Registered User
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    hi there all

    i have visited 3 montessori schools in hk island .. and chose IMS bc i felt at that time.. it was more on a " truer" path of what montessori should be.. i dont think the teaching method at IMS is wrong per say. just that at the end i think the style/method/philosophy did not jive with what i have in mind. The teachers are great ppl , we communicate daily and i have other parents friends in IMS whom absolutely love the school. I guess - its just not right for me and my child.

    having said that- i can see the benefits of putting my 2 yo in the montessori system.. she is able to play and concentrate better at the materials/toys that she has in hands and this is only 2- 3 weeks into school! however- i just miss the other fun bits for her.. music, dancing, painting etc.. you know the usual 2 yo activities.. i dont have time to supplement her with other actitivies - mygym, kindermusik, dance class during her non school hours so just wanted her to have a balance.

    i cant agree more that school should be fun and exciting..just want to see a happy face on my kid!

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