Recently, I posted a blog about general criteria to use when looking for a daycare provider for your child. While these guidelines are a good place to start, it’s always a good idea to get more specific as you narrow down your choices. For instance, if you have decided that a Montessori child care center is the right place for your child, it’s important to consider:
- Classroom layout
- Student materials
- How children are grouped
The Montessori method is all about accessibility and independent learning. Appropriate student materials should be placed on shelves that are easily reached by small children. In addition, there should be clear and defined areas for each of the main areas of the Montessori method: practical life, sensorial, language, math and cultural.
Montessori child care utilizes hands-on learning in almost every scenario. Learning materials in a Montessori setting are more like tools for discovering new things in five main areas.
Each material should teach one skill or concept at a time and be arranged on shelves from simplest to most complex. It’s a good idea to ask teachers to explain the purpose behind the materials in their classroom to ensure they understand the Montessori method and its purpose.
Daycare centers typically take children between 6 weeks and 6 years, but it is more difficult to divide children based on age before elementary school. Kids develop at different rates, which can cause lessons to bore children or go over their heads when they are separated by age. Therefore, Montessori child care groups kids based on developmental markers. This process ensures that lessons engage children and encourage good self-esteem.