Many people think of kindergarten as a child’s first year of school. But for Montessori preschool students, kindergarten is their third year of education. This unique “Leadership Year” or “Capstone Year” is the culmination of the growth, exploration, and independence your preschool-aged child has already gained.
By this point, your child has made friends and mastered many skills that children just starting kindergarten haven’t studied yet. The Montessori kindergarten year brings your child’s earlier learning to fruition and sets them up for lifelong success. Simply put, Montessori kindergarten is something you don’t want your child to miss out on.
Leadership and Confidence: The Montessori Kindergarten Difference
At Montessori School, children of kindergarten age blossom. They enjoy unique educational advantages that foster lifelong self-confidence and accomplishment.
- Children of kindergarten age share what they’ve learned with younger children — developing leadership skills.
- “Leadership Year” students also enjoy positive opportunities to share with classmates in ways that build confidence.
- Children do advanced collaborative projects — much earlier than traditional school students do.
- Your son or daughter learns to research, assimilate information, and synthesize — advanced learning skills that give them a head-start on success.
- Your child’s academic learning is supplemented with hands-on life experiences, such as field trips to the recycling center, nature center, and museums.
- During this “Capstone Year,” your child cements their social skills, equipping them to make new friends more easily.
Here’s a closer look at the many benefits of keeping your child in a Montessori school for kindergarten.
1. Advanced learning pace
By age five, most Montessori children are reading and doing multiplication and division. By contrast, the average kindergarten student is just learning phonetics and numbers.
2. Deep-seated knowledge
Just as a child living overseas may learn to speak two languages, but quickly lose the second language if his family moves back home, children who leave the Montessori class for traditional kindergarten may lose skills they’ve worked hard to learn. The Leadership Year cements these concepts so they aren’t forgotten.
3. Strong leadership skills
In the Montessori classroom, children of kindergarten age develop confidence, kindness, and self-assurance — essential characteristics of a good leader.
4. Mentoring others
During the Capstone Year, your child will have many opportunities to mentor younger children. Teaching others is a powerful way to learn at a deeper level — meaning your son or daughter will cement their knowledge even more.
5. Safe, supportive environment
Parents often worry about how their son or daughter will do socially. Allowing your child to stay in Montessori school for kindergarten gives them a chance to thrive in a classroom where everyone knows them. This ups their comfort level and gives them more social practice that they’ll use to make friends elsewhere.
6. Greater innovation and creativity
Montessori kindergarten avoids the rigid structure of conventional classrooms and invites imaginative, out-of-the-box thinkers. The Montessori method of learning has spawned many accomplished success stories — among them Google founders Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Amazon’s Jeff Bezos, cellist Yo Yo Ma, and many others.
7. Love for learning
Montessori children learn how to learn — and they learn to love learning! By keeping your child in Montessori for kindergarten, you help them deepen learning skills that will serve them well later in life.
8. Self-directed pace
Traditional kindergarten involves the entire class doing the same thing at the same time. But in Montessori kindergarten, your child progresses at his or her own rate for optimal learning.
9. Child-focused education
In our Montessori school, your child receives a customized experience that helps develop them intellectually, socially, and emotionally.
10. Individualized attention
In conventional schools, teachers are often overwhelmed with class size and workloads. Our classes allow us to give time to every child. Your children won’t slip through the cracks.
11. More than academics
Montessori kindergarten doesn’t focus only on math and reading. We also encourage kindness, independence, collaboration, and self-advocacy.
12. Variety of learning styles
In Montessori kindergarten, your child can actively use the learning style that suits them best. The teachers will use experiential, brain-based education (neuro-teaching) for individualized success.
13. Advanced math skills
Montessori math is based on the European tradition of unified mathematics. Basic geometry is introduced at a young age.
14. Global citizenship
During the Capstone Year, Montessori children gain awareness of the world through studying different cultures and world geography.
15. Engaged learning
Rather than drills and memorization, Montessori kindergarten teaches students to really understand what they’re learning. Children enjoy active learning through hands-on experience, investigation, and research.
16. Purpose and self-worth
We set high expectations for all our students, not only a special few. Your child develops self-discipline and motivation that serves them well wherever they may go.
17. Integrated knowledge
Montessori kindergartners don’t just learn facts. They learn how different subject areas, such as history, architecture, the arts, and science, are interrelated. This makes learning more effective and more memorable.
18. Giving back
Montessori kindergarten students learn to care about others through community service, responsibility, teaching, and helping others.
19. No fear of failure
Because Montessori education values experimentation and discovery, our students learn how to self-correct and embrace mistakes as essential to their achievements. They develop persistence that will serve them well in life.
20. Real-world skills for lifetime success
In Montessori schools, even at the kindergarten level, students work together. This ability to collaborate well with others is essential for success in sports, academics, relationships, and work. Your child learns to strive for their personal best, rather than basing their value on how well they compete with others.