This is a safe place to share your honest opinions of a school, whether good or bad.
Hammer Montessori At Galarza Elementary School3
Posted May 07, 2014
- a parent
We have been pretty happy with this school up until this year. There is no longer a PTA which means there is really limited ways for parents to get involved and meet other parents or be involved. There is a foundation but it is not a very welcoming group and does not do the typical PTA events that would draw the students and parents to the school for events. Miss having the events that the other school onsite gets to have. Also my child is now in 4th grade and I am worried about the choices for 5th grade. There is one really great teacher that we all want but she can only have 30 students and currently teaches 4th/5th which means even fewer 5th graders. The other 5th grade teacher is of questionable reputation and character and one I do not want teaching my child. Seems like I am not the only one in this situation. It's a shame that the school does great until the important 5th grade. For younger grades though it is great and I would recommend it. Would also recommend getting a PTA back on campus.
I have 3 children that attend Hammer Montessori, my oldest since 2009. We have had both kinder teachers for my children, and the teachers clearly have different styles. I found for my 3 children, both styles are effective and offer a unique personality fit for my non-cookie cutter kids. I think parents don't always understand the Montessori classroom and how the kinder classroom is structured. Thus the reason for the tours and the opportunity to meet the kinder teachers. If you are considering schools for your kinder or 1st grader, please come check out our school. You won't find an education like this in any other public school in SJUSD.
My daughter is just entering the fourth grade at Hammer and we have had nothing but a great experience here. The teachers are extremely easy to talk with and accessible. With any school, there will be a range of types of teachers and personalities. I have found that the principal and teachers work together to place the kids with the most appropriate teachers that best suit the child's personality while keeping the the classroom dynamics in mind. Our community of teachers and parents are amazing. I'd really like to see the school find a site that can allow it to expand it to eight grade.
My daughter just finished Kinder at Hammer and we have been very impressed with the education she is receiving. She loves going to school and to the after school program. She has excelled academically, has mastered reading and is writing sentences. She loves all the jobs and being able to work at her own pace. Teachers are all Monterssori trained and do a great job assessing what each child needs and their progress. Parents are very involved and school community is great. Families are all very down to earth. Can't wait for my son to start kinder next fall.
My child has attended this school since kindergarten and is now in 4th grade. Up until this year we have loved the school and the teachers up until this year were fantastic. The teacher we have for fourth grade is not Montessori trained and is very lazy and basically just gives assignments and then spends his days on his iPad on Facebook. He is also "sarcastic" which borders on disrespect and mean. Many parents have complained about him to the principal but he has now here three years and only getting worse. My son and his friends are very excited to have this year almost over so they can be (hopefully) in the other 4/5 grade class next year. My concern is that so many people have requested NOT to be in his class that there won't be space in the other class and my son will have to suffer for another year. We are seriously considering another school. Frustrating that my son wants to stay with his friends but does not want to be with his current 4/5 teacher next year. I am not willing to take the chance.
Hammer Montessori School is the best-kept secret in the South Bay public school system. I've worked in public education for 25 years and, as a parent, was looking for a public school that provided an engaging, thoughtful approach to learning, caring and creative teachers, strong leadership, and a great family community. We have found that in Hammer Montessori. We actually started out at our neighborhood school (also a highly rated school), but within weeks saw our son's love of learning plummet due to the worksheet culture of the school. He went from a very active hands-on preschool to a Kinder classroom in which he was seated at his desk with worksheets for most of each day. After 12 weeks, we decided we needed to do something, and switched to Hammer Montessori. It turned out to be a great decision he looks forward to school every day, and our younger son will join the Hammer Montessori family in a few years. If you seek a school that cares about your child as an individual, provides stimulating self-directed learning that meets California state standards, and involves your family in meaningful ways, please visit Hammer Montessori. Every family deserves to love their school!
This school has great teachers. It is our second year here and I am very happy with the education my daughter is receiving. There are a few downfalls: Late start time (9:05) doesn't really work well for working parents-I wish this would change. 30 kids per class-this is just too many in these tiny rooms, but what else do you expect from the public school system. Shared campus with Galarza/shared PTA funds. The upside outweighs the cons for the most part. However, there are more pros: Freedom in learning-with the Montessori methods Lot's of extra activities thanks to the HMF Teachers that I feel truly care about my child and the school Many involved dedicated parents
This is our second year at Hammer, my son is in 2nd grade and daughter just started in kinder. We are really happy to have found Hammer and the Montessori method of teaching. Both of my kids are really happy and having fun at school. We look forward to many great years here.
Perhaps nothing is more daunting than being faced with the choice of where to send your children to school. OK... that may sound a bit strong but it was not an easy decision for our family. When the time came to make our family's choice, we knew that we wanted to send our kids to a school that would inspire them to become life long learners. We wanted to find a group of teachers, faculty and staff that would encourage our kids to experiment, research, read, question, explore and, yes, even fail. In short we were looking for a school that would help us teach our kids to be leaders. The answer for our family is / was Hammer Montessori Elementary Magnet. We currently have a Kindergartener and a First Grader attending Hammer Montessori Elementary. We feel so lucky to have our children attend Hammer Montessori. Both kindergarten teachers are amazing... With our two kids, we have had the opportunity to experience both. They are carrying, warm and our boys love them. My son's first grade teacher is also a rock star. She has inspired my son to love reading and is encouraging him to do extra work on his own to explore science. We highly recommend Hammer Montessori!