We moved our son to this school at age 3 after a disappointing experience at a different early childhood program What a difference!! Teachers at MCS are professionally trained Montessori teachers, most of whom have been teaching this program for years, often decades. Equally important, the continuing education is clearly rigorous and ongoing, and the teachers remain PASSIONATE about what they do--which is clearly transmitted in a palpable, excited-about-learning feel as soon as you enter the building. My son is now in his fourth year--completing first grade-- and we couldn't be happier for several reasons. First, he is doing phenomenally academically. Montessori gives kids a chance to move ahead as they are ready. Second, the teacher/student ratio is amazing--2 teachers to 20 students in his class. Third, being in an age group/class for three years gives teachers a chance to know and care deeply about each child. This has been a great comfort, especially last year when my son's father and I divorced--his school and teachers were such a stable, nuanced part of his support system. We are so glad we found MCS and that we are staying past early childhood into the elementary years.
My child started as a third year (kindergarten) and we are going to stay for elementary school. The Montessori system has a little bit of a learning curve, but our child immediately thrived in the self-driven environment of the multigrade classroom. Although he came in already reading, writing and doing addition and subtraction on his own, I was impressed that at our first parent -teacher conference, the teachers had honed in on exactly what he needed to work on rather than leaving him to his own devices. The open plan Montessori classroom style means that the teachers have to work with each child individually and know them each well. This is a small school, but there are still ample opportunities for after-school activities and enrichment programs. There seems to be a good diversity in the student and teacher population, and we have been delighted by the cheerfulness, warmth and efficiency with which the school is run. Despite the "no tests, no homework, no grades" approach, the school seems to be a serious academic environment with high standards for achievement -- just a different route for getting kids there.
All three of our children have attended MCS. Although each of our children is different, they have all thrived at Montessori. With the school s focus on the individual child, the Montessori teachers have helped each of our children to grow and develop in their own way. The environment at Montessori is warm and nurturing and we couldn t ask for a more supportive place for our children.
My daughter is in the early childhood. She is the first year there. She knows three letter blending and adding using her beads. We are so glad to see her progress. They hand out a calendar every month to show the activities in a month, my daughter s birthday also in the December Calendar, which make her very happy. She likes to see the calendar and read the activity of each day. They also offer outdoor class room, dance class and field trip, which make them learn not just academic, but every aspects of everyday life and science. They also have a lot of after school classes you can choose to register, like karate, zumba and ballet. So you don t need to looking for after school classes. My daughter loves zumba and battet a lot. Teachers care about each student in the class room. My daughter once had very heavy running nose, making the skin below her nose turn red, the teacher noticed this and gave her moisture, which make her feel better. MCS is like a big family, every teacher knows her name and greeting to her everyday. Even if we are the last one to pick her up, her teachers would read her books to accompany with her. We love MCS.
Our daughter is in her second year of the toddler program at MCS and we couldn't be happier with our experience. Her teachers are warm, loving and patient, and I am continually amazed at how well they understand my child and her personality. They really value and nurture each child's uniqueness, while guiding them to be respectful, independent young people. We have watched our daughter's confidence, social skills and independence blossom. We are so happy knowing that she is in a warm, nurturing environment with adults who REALLY understand toddlers. And at the same time, she is building a wonderful foundation for future learning. The teachers go above and beyond their job description and are always available when we have questions (potty training help! Discipline - what do I do? Is this normal?) or if we just need to talk. Thrilled with our experience.
They've really established a great program and what I love about Montessori is the focus on the whole child. I'm amazed at how much my 4 yr old is learning. He is so confident and independent there. The teachers are all so amazing. Love it!
We had BIG of problems with this school - but be warned it took us awhile to find out the truth. The school is great at marketing to parents and making sure parents don't come into the classroom, but not so great at running school. Our child developed behavior problems at this school. The teachers kept telling us that they did not believe in time-outs for the children, which is fine, but when asked what they implemented for discipline they could never give us an answer. Most schools use redirection. This school basically has no method for discipline. Also, they ask that the parents not be in the classroom. We had so many problems I ended up going into the classroom to observe and .....WOW - it was like a monkey cage with an untrained teacher sitting in the middle. The teachers as well as the director are not well trained. The director is trained at the Montessori World Institute which is basically a mail-order certification school. It would not matter anyway because the director rarely leaves her office to see what a terrible job her teachers are doing. This school looks good from the outside because of their marketing, but be wary of what is going on inside the school.
We are very happy with the way our children are developing not just their academics (they are excelling in maths), but also their whole personality. They are very polite- They listen- They know how to interact with other children (younger and older) and adults. They are learning through play- at their pace- and get individualised lessons. We feel that our children are listened to by the teachers and by their friends. In the corridors, the staff knows the name of all the children in the school- quite impressive. We recommend it if you are in tune with the montessori method. It is not for all parents. I feel also that we have a very calm peaceful atmosphere at home because the children are peaceful at school.
Our family has been enrolled since 2008. - Tuned in tachers & admin who really understand children - dual immersion Spanish for ages 3-6 - good specialty teachers for art, music, dance, outdoor education, yoga - self-paced learning - hands on materials and methods - welcoming culture that prides itself on tolerance This school fundamentally, through its methods and culture, develops the "soft" skills critical to adult happiness and success: self-motivation, decision making, conflict management, ability to articulate needs of the self and respect needs of others, leadership, project management, work-life balance, and team work. Overall, I am pleased with my children's academic progress and the teachers have responed to my children's emotional needs as well as their academic development. There are no standardized tests but the progress reports detail mastery of specific skills typical for age. There is little homework but my children have met or exceeded all grade level expectations. I agree with the other reviewer that I strongly prefer a school closing much fewer days and including all fees except optional activities in the tuition and reducing the committment fee.
MCS is an excellent school, particularly for toddler and pre-k. Most teachers are well trained and dedicated with little turnover. However, when deciding on this program, consider that they follow the Salt Lake School District calendar, meaning that you will have to pay additional tuition (literally thousands of dollars more per year) for care during school "breaks" and that the program is closed completely on multiple days for teacher training and for almost two weeks in August. The school day is from 9-3:30 as well, so you have to pay extra for extended hours 7:30-6 pm. Additionally, many of the extracurricular activities cost extra as well ($80-100 each per session). The only criticism I have is that because of the Montessori method, I often feel that I do not have a good understanding of what the kids are learning in the classroom; as an involved parent I would prefer more consistent communication with the teachers.
The preschool and toddler programs are amazing. The teachers are dedicated and have such a joy of teaching. They have many programs available and the kids thrive. My kids excelled in different areas - my son was a wiz at math at 4 and they let him go with it and was doing fractions and multiplication in kindergarten. My daughter would help her younger friends learn to read and write. The elementary program is not as strong. The teachers do not seem to like what they do and perhaps some fresh faces will change the elementary program. It has great potential for a strong elementary program, but the teachers seem to be the only thing holding it back - and the administration who won't make the changes.
What a great school...wonderful sense of community. If you're looking for a Montessori school, this is a fantastic pick.
I have three 4-year-olds entering their 2nd year in the Early Childhood program at Montessori Community School. They thrived in the multi-age classroom last year, wanting to be like the bigger kids who watched out for them! I love the emphasis on the arts, the outdoor classroom, peacebuilding, and community at MCS. The teachers are so patient and they truly embody the Montessori philosophy. As a triplet mom, I'm thrilled when one or more of my kids figures out another way they can be "independent"! And I love the excitement they come home with when they've learned a new fact ("The skull protects our brain, Mom!") or when they've made something of their own with a new work.
I love working at Montessori Community School and coming to work each day is an absolute joy. We have highly experienced and dedicated teachers - many have worked here for 10+ years and a very talented support staff. We take the word "community" to heart in everything that we do as a staff and we have a very supportive and collaborative working environment. We are committed to being a world-class Montessori school and that commitment shines through in the quality of programs that we offer.
My boys have been at Montessori Community School for the past 4 years, in the Toddler, Early Childhood and Elementary programs and they have absolutely thrived in this environment. The school has incredible teachers and a wonderful community of families. The school has beautiful gardens, a dance room, an art studio, a large gymnasium and lots of playground space for the kids. My boys love school. They are doing great academically and are developing the social skills that they would never learn in a public school environment.
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The Community Rating is the school’s average rating from its community members (e.g., parents, students, and school staff). The highest possible rating is five stars; the lowest is one star.
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