We encourage all families to tour our facility in order to get a feel for the Montessori style of education and our approach to individualized instruction. A CVMS education is designed to fit each child, rather than expecting the child to fit the program. The proven Montessori approach works with children to instill a natural love of learning that they will carry with them for the rest of their lives.
Q: What is the difference between Cedar Valley Montessori School and other preschools?
A: Montessori schools are based on the philosophy and method of Maria Montessori. It is an individualized education experience. The best way to sum it up is that “traditional schools” have 21 children and one lesson plan. At CVMS, there are 21 kids and 21 different lesson plans. That’s the difference. Each child is treated as the unique individual that they are.
Q: What is the ultimate goal of a Montessori education?
A: From our toddler program, where we work to start each child on the road to independence, to the third year of our three-year preschool cycle where our goal is for each child to leave here prepared to successfully transition to the next phase of their education, we strive to give our students a solid sense of self and a love of learning that they carry with them for the rest of their lives.
Q: Will my child read and do math quicker if they attend their formative years in a Montessori environment?
A: This is a very common question that has a very complex answer. There are many reasons why Montessori-schooled children have (and are perceived to have) advanced reading and math skills upon completion of the Primary Program. Several of these factors include: at this age they have an absorbent mind, which means that they take in information from their environment via their five senses, as they interact with the manipulative materials in the environment and observe others.
Q: I have heard that children in a Montessori classroom “get to do whatever they want.” Is that true?
A: Yes and no. Children are welcome to work with any of the manipulative materials in the classroom – as long as they have had a lesson on the materials from the Lead Directress or the Directress. Once they have had the lesson, they may work with those materials as often as they wish.
Q: How do CVMS students transition into first grade in other school districts – whether private or parochial – after such a unique Montessori educational experience?
A: We work closely with parents and area schools to ensure that transitions from CVMS to first grade are smooth. Upon completion of the third year at CVMS, faculty and staff administer an exit assessment that is made up of all of the standards that any child exiting any area Kindergarten program are expected to have mastered. CVMS sends the assessment on to the transitioning school of choice, which allows the new teaching team to appropriately place the child in the 1st grade classroom. CVMS faculty and staff have found that if the child is placed appropriately academically, the social and emotional transitions are effortless.
Q: What are the hallmarks of an “authentic” Montessori educational experience?
A: There are several hallmarks of an “authentic” Montessori educational experience, as defined by Maria Montessori. They include: 5-day-a-week programming, multi-aged classrooms, three-hour work cycles, three-year cycles, a prepared environment, and Montessori-certified faculty.
Q: How do I know if CVMS and a Montessori education are right for my child?
A: CVMS encourages any prospective families to do a few things: observe a Montessori classroom and research the Montessori philosophy to see if it aligns with your parenting philosophy. The more consistency between home and school, the happier the child.
Q: I have heard that CVMS has a long waiting list. What are my chances for enrolling my child?
A: CVMS openings are dependent upon the number of openings available for each age group. CVMS operates multi-aged classrooms, so it is imperative to maintain a balance of children in their first, second and third year in the Montessori three-year cycle. Families are encourage to schedule a tour. The CVMS waiting list is always evolving and varies from year to year.
Q: I would like to enroll my child in Studio Programs. What are the age requirements?
A: Each Studio Program has a different age requirement and enrollment process. CVMS encourages families to read about the available Studio Programs and contact each provider directly.
Q: How do I learn about enrollment options?
A: Enrollment is customized for families and options are discussed during a tour visit. The opportunity to apply for financial aid is available.
Q: My child will utilize the Wraparound Childcare. How will our family be billed?
A: Childcare is billed monthly in arrears.