YOUR QUESTIONS ANSWERED: MY 6 YR OLD SON IS STARTING MONTESSORI - DO KIDS ADJUST OK AFTER BEING AT A PUBLIC SCHOOL FOR THE PAST YEAR?
Any Montessori program is ideally based on the observation of the child and their abilities, strengths and weaknesses, interests and drives. The teacher makes these observations and assessments before presenting a curriculum to the child. In a 6-9 program, a new child will be paired and grouped with children who provide a range of abilities to both support his exploration and provide a challenge level for them to attain.
Many Montessori programs at this age level will have regular consultations with each child to both get feedback from the child and work collaboratively to plan their projects. This process supports the nature of the children working independently at this level. If necessary, a child new to the Montessori method may be given lessons that are ideally provided between 3 – 6 years, but usually these materials may already be at hand in the 6 – 9 classroom and are not seen as remedial.
The amount of time spent on these materials will provide a suitable foundation for future exploration within the three-year period; your child will be free to accomplish his goals without the interruption of an end of year shift. As his guide at home, it would be ideal to become familiar with the way the 6 – 9 classroom works and ask the teacher for the language that is used in the classroom for such things as the materials, the ‘consultation process’ used in that classroom. Using similar language to that used at school will support a child new to the independent approach of Montessori.
- Rebecca Grugan