If you’re looking for an educational environment that offers a child-focused learning approach, Montessori school is the way to go! The Montessori Method of education fosters self-motivated and rigorous growth for children in all areas of development—social, emotional, cognitive and physical. In a Montessori school you’ll see kids of all ages working in groups and independently.

However, the term “Montessori” isn’t trademarked, which means that anyone can open up a school and call it a Montessori; that’s why parents need to be vigilant when enrolling their kids in a so-called “Montessori” school.

Here are some traits that can help parents identify a true Montessori school.

Children of mixed-ages

Authentic Montessori schools have kids of different ages in same classrooms—often within 3 years of age from each other. The concept is that kids learn at their own pace—one child might start reading at 4 years of age while the other starts at late 5; Montessori schools don’t believe in holding back kids based on a pre-determined average at which every child is ‘supposed’ to read. Moreover, children tend to learn a lot from their mature peers—which wouldn’t be the case in single-age classrooms.

“Freedom within limits”

Montessori schools often have a dedicated time of day where children can opt for activities of their own choosing. However, this freedom time is within limits because the activities are selected from structured options that teachers purposefully opt beforehand.

The idea is to build on the kids’ ability to focus on a particular task; when kids are given meaningful and engaging work of their choosing—from pouring from jug to jug at 3 years old to doing addition problems at 5—they have impressive sustained focus.

A prepared environment

A telltale sign of a true Montessori school is its classroom—from the classroom furniture to the learning materials, Montessori schools have a responsive prepared environment. They have a diverse set of learning materials that are specially designed to meet the interests, needs, development and abilities of the children in the class. The teachers adapt and modify the selection of educational materials and the physical layout of the class to the kids’ ever-changing needs.

Self-directed and active learning

Hands on learning and student-led self-paced learning activities are the primary focus of Montessori schools. Students learn more from practical materials, concrete models and hands-on contact than from textbooks; this allows for kids to learn with deeper understanding.

Furthermore, any true Montessori school encourages spontaneous activity—within reasonable limits. Children opt for work that captures their attention and teachers strive to draw their attentions towards new areas of inquiry and challenges.

If you’re looking for a true Montessori school in the San Marcos, CA, area that provides a nurturing and student-focused learning environment, then you’ve come to the right place! Our goal at Montessori School of San Marcos is to encourage independence, accountability, curiosity and a sense of order in children with natural learning opportunities in the classroom.

Our Montessori school offers beginner preschool, preschool and infant care programs for kids in their early stages of development. Contact us today to ensure your child’s academic and personal success!