Article from the February 2014 issue of Canton Life:
Early childhood development drives success in school and life. A critical time to shape productivity is from birth to age 5, when the brain develops rapidly to build the foundation of cognitive and character skills necessary for success in school, health, career and life. An early Montessori education fosters cognitive skills along with attentiveness, motivation, self-control, and sociability.
“There are 700 synapses formed per second in children under 3! This is an amazing time in a preschooler’s life”, said Laura Bertsch, Director of Children’s Garden Montessori in Canton. Her staff recently attended a workshop entitled “How Brain Science Supports Montessori.”
Montessori preschool can help a child in many ways:
School has become much more academic than when most parents attended. Testing, even in kindergarten, is so rigorous that you want the children to be able to show what they know. A quality preschool education is now a necessity.
Larger class sizes in the elementary schools make it crucial for children to be able to focus in order to learn. In Montessori, we are always working on focus and concentration. Children choose the work they are interested in, and they can work without interruption. Montessori materials are unique and very hands on. This helps to keep the children engaged. “In our classroom, a wide variety of materials from math and science to reading and writing are used to keep students actively learning.”, said Tania Arras, Head Teacher at Children’s Garden Montessori.
Research shows that the teacher is the single, most important factor in your child’s education. Preschool is your child’s first introduction to school. The teacher is a guide in your child’s education. A highly qualified Montessori teacher has the experience to find out what level a child is at, and then work individually to progress him or her as far as they can go.
Children build confidence and independence in Montessori preschools. These children become leaders in their elementary years. Montessori classroom are a prepared environment, where children practice making choices and following tasks through to completion. This gives them confidence to tackle new challenges and take academic risks.
Every parent envisions their child becoming a successful adult. The choices we make now for our children put us on the path to future academic success. Montessori preschool can boost children’s skills in all areas
Article from the June 2013 issue of Canton Life:
Montessori is a popular trend with parents, but it’s based on a method that has been around for 100 years! Maria Montessori shifted the attention away from the traditional teacher-directed learning model to a learner-centered one. By recognizing a child’s natural desire to learn and providing special materials, each child is able to develop concentration, coordination, independence, and a regard for order.
Over Laura Bertsch’s extensive career in education, she has taught both traditional and Montessori methods. According to Bertsch, “The Montessori method really provides an individualized program for children, which accelerates personal learning and encourages multi-age collaboration.” A common misconception is that Montessori is a franchise, when in fact each school is independent. “It is important to research the school your child attends prior to enrollment.” Some things to consider are staff education and experience, and what academic and extracurricular activities will be provided. Unfortunately, many parents select the school without considering what their child will learn there. Preschool and kindergarten are the foundation for success in school.
Coming from a family of educators, Laura has much exposure to early childhood. After getting her masters in early childhood, her Montessori certificate, and teaching for 15 years, she will assume the position of Director of Children’s Garden Montessori. It is a new school, located on the West side of Canton. Besides the academic program, the children will tend a garden, cook, do hands-on science experiments, yoga, and sign language.