What is Montessori?

Montessori encompasses a philosophy by which children are allowed to develop naturally and fully, each at his or her own pace. Under the guidance of a certified Montessori teacher, in a specially prepared environment and using carefully formulated materials, children are given the opportunity to learn in the best ways - by choice and by discovery. The dual qualities of independence and a love of learning, natural tendencies for the children, are nurtured in such a way that both competence and confidence result. These competent and self-confident young people have the necessary tools for successful future learning and living.

Why should you choose a Montessori education for your child?

Between birth and age 6 is when most of your child's intelligence and social characteristics will be formed. This is also when your child is most receptive, curious, and excited about exploring the world around him or her. A Montessori environment nurtures that excitement and curiosity by offering a variety of materials and activities to stimulate and intrigue your child. The Montessori teacher is trained to recognize when your child is ready to learn a new skill, and to foster his or her natural instincts and abilities. Your child is valued as an independent thinker and encouraged to make choices on his or her own. A Montessori education provides students of all ages with information in a way they can, understand, and enjoy. Learning is fun, empowering, and custom-fit to suit your child's individual learning style.

I've heard Montessori is too individualized and does not allow socialization. Is this true?

While it is true that many of the activities are individualized, this is important so that the children can work at their own pace without feeling competitive or frustrated about their own progress. However, there are many activities that do involve group participation including those where the older children help teach the younger children. Also, during the day, children participate in circle time together, eat together and play outside together. One of the Montessori goals is to help your child develop socially so that he/she can achieve the respect of others and work well together within a group environment. As children develop in our elementary environment, small and large group lessons naturally evolve as the individual developmental differences fade.

Is Sunshine Montessori affiliated with any religion?

No. Although some Montessori schools operate under the auspices of a church, synagogue, or diocese, Sunshine Montessori does not. We are religiously neutral and have students with varying religious backgrounds that attend our school.

Where do students go after they leave Sunshine Montessori?

Our students have attended all of the local public and private schools in our area. The beauty of the educational foundation is that it prepares each child for any option they may pursue. In addition, many of our children have excelled and been selected for challenging academic environments, special honors, and acknowledgements.

How will my child adjust to public schools after Sunshine Montessori?

Whether the child attends another private school or goes on to public school, Montessori education provides an excellent background for traditional education. Studies show that Montessori children adjust well and are generally among the better students. They spend their time more productively because of their self-direction and positive attitude toward learning.

Do you have infant care?

We do at our sister school, Mayflower Montessori.

Do I have to pay extra for lunch or snacks?

No, both are included in your child's tuition.

Do I have to pay extra for the music classes?

No, these classes are included in your child's tuition.

Do I have to pay extra for special programs (i.e., graduation day, Christmas program)?

The only charge is a $16 gown purchase for kindergarteners graduating on graduation day.

Can I visit the school to see how my child is doing?

You can visit the school absolutely any time. However, if you wish to a have a conference with your child's teacher, you will need to schedule an appointment in advance.

Can anyone pick up our child from school?

Yes, but only if the parent/guardian has informed us of such arrangements in advance (this includes grandparents and immediate family).

If my child is sick, can he/she still come to school?

By state law, if your child has a temperature over 100 F, he/she must stay home from school. If your child is recovering from a contagious condition, he/she may need a note from your doctor to return to school.

Can my child take his/her naps at school?

Absolutely! We provide separate quiet nap areas for children (including preschoolers) who are still taking naps. Cots/mats are provided and bedding materials are washed at school each week.