Need Info on Montessori Schools

Updated on June 20, 2007
A.A. asks from Tampa, FL
5 answers

I have a 2 1/2 year old daughter that has not done well in 3 Mother's Morning out programs in the South Tampa area. I have been told that she does not "conform". Well, why would I want her too??

She is very high strung and independent and I am told that when the kids are told to get into a group for a story or different activity she doesn't want to, she would prefer to go off and play with toys or other things that she is interested in at the time.

She has been at home with me since birth and able to be independent and play alone if she wants....maybe a bad thing....??

My girlfriend told me that Montessori schools actually allow kids to "be" and is not as structured as other church run programs. I was wondering if anyone could provide some insight to this and possibly reccomend one.


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answers from Tampa on

Sounds like montissori would be great for your child! My son was in one for a little while, it didn't work for us because he is the type of person who has to have everything in control {not like me at all} I spent alot of time at the school with my son and I did notice it was very low pressure. If a child did not want to be in circle time they could find some quiet "work" to do. Just make sure like any child care center, you should look at the reports from the two times a year the state comes in. You should be able to get a 3 or 6 year history on everything they have seen.

1 mom found this helpful


answers from Tampa on

Hi A. - My daughter attended Montessori Academy of Temple Terrace ( (for ages walking thru 4/5 yrs old) from just after 2 yrs old & has just recently moved to the "Prep" school (for ages pre-k thru 5th grade) and LOVES it. Montessori actually IS very structured, but in unique ways - very different frm regular schools - all the children sit on a line (tape on the floor); line up in a straight line when going outside for playtime or lunch; have to be quiet when the teacher signals, but does allow the child to choose their own "work", work independently as well as learn thru group lessons, etc. There are also discipline rules (mostly time out) in place. If this specific school is in a location that works for you, I would strongly suggest you visit the school & see how they function. I'd be happy to speak to you more directly as well, so email me back & we can chat more! Best of luck in your search! Montessori has been a wonderful experience for my family!



answers from Tampa on

Hi A..

My daughter is almost 2 and has gone to a Montessori School (Palm Harbor) since December of '06.

I send her to Montessori school because I was repelled by all the open daycare places I visited, and frankly knew very little of the Montessori philosophy until she started.

Kids basically, focus on their own "work" and can work side by side, but mostly they work alone. At toddler years, my understanding is they are developmentally not ready to learn about concepts like sharing, etc.

My daughter came to me at age one, and is a very bright girl, and I felt needed to have her brain stimulated.

I have been very, very pleased by the school and her development there. They basically let the kids set the tone for learning, and many, many people have told me the kids come out way ahead of their peers on education.

I am not sure if I will keep her in Montessori until she reaches school-age, but it seems to me, based on what little I read about your daughter, she would enjoy the setting - - if you find a good school...which, like anything else, there are many varieties of teaching of Montessori out there.

Not sure if that helps :)




answers from Tampa on

I called Montessori just last week and was very impressed with Miss Amanda. She was very calm and loving. Perhaps that's the environment that would best suit your daughter right now. I've found that most of the programs in S Tampa are focused on the wrong things-i.e.getting our children to be little soldiers. I am also a stay at home mom of a preschooler and I feel that what we are looking for in a preschool is not necessarily what the majority of working parents are concerned about. Because we are able to, we are the ones teaching our children discipline and proper social behaiviors so we don't want "teachers/schools" focusing on that the few hours our kids are at preschool. We'd rather them have fun and socialize with other kids and also to take direction from other adults. Because of S Tampa's competitive environment, mostly filled with both parents who work full time, the preschools are not geared to what we want. They actually "have" to teach the children the things that we are already doing at home because the parents aren't home to do so. So, maybe it isn't your daughter who is the "problem". Maybe she needs a different type of program. Unfortunately, most of the local programs aren't geared to teach the "whole" child because they are too big. I don't actually blame the schools, they are set up to meet the needs of the biggest demand of parents which happen not to be stay at home parents. However, like I've had to do myself, perhaps you need to listen to the feedback these schools have given you. Are they right about anything? As hard as it may be to accept, does your daughter does need the structure these places offer. Maybe. Good luck.

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