The Montessori Method
Turtle River Montessori has a slogan of "Excellence in Whole Education". What does that mean?
Turtle River Montessori prides itself on our high standards in “whole education,” utilizing Montessori’s belief that teaching philosophies and practices should be learner focused and address broader frameworks such as peace and environmental education. This approach encourages children to think and discover for themselves. It reaches beyond basic academic achievement to influence “the whole child.”
Where did Montessori come from?
What is the number one Montessori philosophy?
What is the Montessori Teaching Method?
What is the significance of Turtle River's membership with the American Montessori Society?
The American Montessori Society’s Affiliation is a voluntary process undertaken by schools that are committed to continuous school improvement. In our pursuit of excellence, we are a member of American Montessori Society, and meet their standards.
Can I practice Montessori at home with my child?
Yes, you can use Montessori principles of child development at home. Look at your home through your child’s eyes. Children need a sense of belonging, and they get it by participating fully in the routines of everyday life. “Help me do it by myself” is the life theme of the preschooler. Can you find ways for your child to participate in meal preparation, cleaning, gardening, caring for clothes, shoes, and toys? Providing opportunities for independence is the surest way to build your child’s self-esteem.
At the school level, many homeschoolers and other parents use the Montessori philosophy of following the child’s interests and not interrupting concentration to educate their children. In school, only a trained Montessori teacher can properly implement Montessori education, using the specialized learning equipment of the Montessori “prepared environment.” Here, social development comes from being in a positive and unique environment with other children, which is an integral part of Montessori education.
Are Montessori children successful later in life?
Research studies show that Montessori children are well prepared for life academically, socially, and emotionally. In addition to scoring well on standardized tests, Montessori children are ranked above average on such criteria as following directions, turning in work on time, listening attentively, using basic skills, showing responsibility, asking provocative questions, showing enthusiasm for learning, and adapting to new situations. Montessori education typically transitions very well into high school or college settings, which offers challenging programs that keep their interest. Montessori-educated students generally perform better than their peers due to their highly developed maturity, self-responsibility, self-esteem and love of learning.
Did you know?
- The youngest Noble Peace Prize nominee is a Montessori graduate.
- The youngest Rhodes Scholar is a Montessori graduate.
- The youngest artist to exhibit at the United Nations is a Montessori graduate.
Google’s cofounders Larry Page and Sergey Brin attributed their success to going to a Montessori school where they learned to be self-directed and self-starters. They said that Montessori education allowed them to learn to think for themselves and gave them the freedom to pursue their own interests.
Some other famous Montessori graduates include: Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos, noted pediatrician and author T. Berry Brazelton, chef Julia Child, singer and record producer Sean “Diddy” Combs, actress Dakota Fanning, famous diarist Anne Frank, owner/editor of the Washington Post Katherine Graham, Nobel prize winning author Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Jacqueline Kennedy Onassis, Wikipedia founder Jimmy Wales, video game pioneer Will Wright, and English royals Prince William and Prince Harry.
“The Montessori educational approach might be the surest route to joining the creative elite, which are so over-represented by the school’s alumni that one might suspect a Montessori Mafia,” writes the Wall Street Journal. The list of Montessori’s famous graduates shows that Montessori Education does exactly what it sets out to do: it doesn’t force children into a mold, it doesn’t work just for one type of child. Instead, when done correctly, Montessori Education helps each child reach their full potential, whether that potential is in art, computers, literature, music, performance, science etc.
Why is Turtle River considered one of the best Montessori schools?
Why is parental involvement so important at Turtle River?
What does my child need for rest time?
Why does my child need to bring in a family photo?
What are the Memory Books?
What is Turtle River Montessori's dress code?
Where can I buy Turtle River uniforms?
What happens if my child comes in without their uniform (top and bottom)?
Does every child need a change of clothes?
Does my child need clothing for gardening or outside projects?
How do I know when I am to bring in snack?
What are recommended snacks?
For the Pre-primary shared snack, please bring a store-bought and packaged snack for the number of children in the class. Snacks may be:
- Fruit or vegetable platters (no dips), naturally dried fruits, Fruity or Veggie Booty
- Packaged, cut up cheese or cheese sticks
- Whole grain crackers, pretzels or bread sticks, granola or granola bars, popcorn
- Trail mix, graham crackers, goldfish
- Whole grain breads or bagels (sliced at store)
- Banana bread, carrot cake, zucchini bread (sliced) (low-sugar)
- Individually packaged yogurt, applesauce (please include plastic spoons)
- Multi-cultural snacks
Please refrain from sending snacks that include any of the following:
- Partially hydrogenated oils, hydrogenated oils
- High fructose corn syrup, nutra-sweet, aspartame, highly sugared snacks, icing
- Artificial dyes, MSG, hydrolyzed soy protein (another name for MSG)
- Nuts or fish products as many children are severely allergic
A resource for healthy eating is Nutrition Smart, with an extensive selection of vitamins, groceries and herbs, all at up to 50% off suggested retail prices. Turtle River Montesssori receives 10% of items purchased here, so it’s another great way to meet your healthy living goals and support the school at the same time!
Online at www.NutritionSmart.com
Locally at 4155 Northlake Blvd, Palm Beach Gardens 561-694-0644
Do I send a snack for my child the first week of school?
What if I am unable to send in a snack on my designated day?
Please call another parent and switch your snack day or if you cannot arrange to switch with another parent, call the reception desk so we can make other arrangements for your child’s class. Please send a non-perishable snack the next time your child comes to school.
*Snack Time – the snack table is open for two children at a time all morning. The child chooses when to have a snack, however, new children are reminded it is their choice when to have a snack.
Do I need to send a snack if my child is in Aftercare?
Yes, please send a separate snack for aftercare, as there is no group snack at this time.
What may I send for my child's lunch?
Lunches that your child can eat independently are best. We do not heat or keep food refrigerated so please pack lunches accordingly. Include a drink, napkin and placemat. We encourage you to send in reusable ziploc bags or tupperware, cloth napkins and non-disposable silverware utensils. Uneaten items may be eaten in Aftercare as snack, or are returned home so parents may monitor eating habits.
What is Pizza Day?
Fridays are Pizza Day and your child must be enrolled in the Pizza Program (one-time fee assessed at the beginning of each school year) in order to have pizza. Most children enjoy sharing in Pizza Day, and those not enrolled bring their own lunch.
Can we celebrate my child's birthday at Turtle River Montessori?
Birthdays are special events for a child, and we invite you to join us in celebrating this special day in the classroom. In keeping with the Montessori tradition, the child takes a “Birthday Walk” during morning circle time, where the child walks around the “sun” for each year of his/her life. At the end of each year’s “walk” the child tells the class something about what they did during that year. We request each family to send in photographs for each year starting at birth. We will use this to make a timeline of his/her life to be shared with the class.
We request a special Birthday snack that morning. Plates, cups and napkins must be provided. Some snack suggestions are: mini muffins, banana or zucchini bread (no icing), crackers or pretzels with cheese, fruits or vegetable platters, water.
Children are encouraged to contribute a book to the Turtle River library in honor of their birthdays. Suggestions can be obtained from the teachers.
What if we're having a birthday celebration outside of school?
We encourage these fun social celebrations, and there are a number of age-appropriate venues in our area that accommodate large parties. No birthday party invitations may be handed out at school unless the entire class is being invited.
How is school information communicated?
When is an appropriate time to talk to my child's teachers?
How do I make an appointment to see one of the Administrative or Accounting staff?
What is the protocol for entering a classroom?
For the safety of our children, please sign in at the front desk and pick up a Visitor’s Pass:
- Before you visit the classrooms
- When you drop off your child after scheduled arrival time
- When you pick up your child before scheduled dismissal time
Can I walk my child into class the first week of school?
Why does Turtle River use the car line?
What if my child is going to miss a day?
What if I need to have someone other than my child's parents pick up him/her?
What if I am late to pick up my child?
Am I required to participate at the school as a Volunteer?
When can I volunteer inside the classroom?
What are the volunteer jobs and what do they involve?
Lunch Helpers are present with the teachers during lunchtime to assist and supervise the children with hand washing, eating lunch and cleanup. Opening drink boxes, ensuring that the children eat, and maintaining a calm atmosphere are all part of your role. A monthly sign-up sheet is on the class bulletin board. Non-disruptive siblings are permitted with prior approval.
Library Assistants go to the library and check out approximately 10 books on the monthly subjects being studied in the class. Many parents find this to be a great time to obtain a library card for their child.
Craft Material Makers do the cutting, pasting and organizing for hands-on projects, on an as-needed basis. As the teachers need assistance, they call the parents on the list with specific tasks.
Garden Helpers take the children out to the class’s garden in groups of 5 or 6 for weeding, watering and planned garden activities including planting, harvesting, and discussions about garden topics. Usually requires an hour of time and appropriate clothes.
Class Photographers are present at special events to take photos of the children, parents and teachers. Digital format cameras are best and typically are provided by the parent.
Special Event Volunteers During the course of a year, the school holds special events such as the Cultural Peace Festival, Thanksgiving Feast, Holiday Crafts and Valentine’s Day Tea which require additional help. Usually organized by the Classroom Coordinator a monthly sign up sheet is provided at the Volunteer meetings for parents to bring in food, materials, or to assist for a few hours in the classroom, helping the children create crafts, assisting in event preparation or cleaning up.
Coordinators for Calendar, Garden, Book Fair, Teacher Appreciation at the beginning of the school year, or as needed, the Classroom Coordinator will request volunteers for various activities. A Coordinator takes responsibility for a particular task for the year, and may coordinate other volunteers. Parent Social Hosts open their homes to our Turtle River Families for Parents-Only Evenings. Attending parents each bring a food item and beverage.
Facility Improvement Volunteers have cleaned up after hurricanes, assisted with site improvements and helped install play equipment.
Auction Gala Volunteers are critical to Turtle River’s fundraising efforts. A Chairperson oversees the Annual Auction, with a board of volunteers coordinating donations, planning venue and decor, and organizing catering and entertainment.
How is my involvement monitored?
Parent Involvement hours are tracked in the Visitor Check-In/Check-Out book at the front desk, so that when you sign in and out of the school, you can simultaneously record your volunteer hours.
What are the Parent Awareness meetings?
These meetings provide in depth information about the Montessori methodology and its philosophies. Seminars are run by noted speakers and our staff, and are invaluable in assisting you to maximize your child’s educational experience both at school and at home. You must attend at least three (3) Parent Awareness meetings per year and you will receive credit for two (2) hours of involvement time for each meeting attended.
Why does the school have Fundraising Events?
Turtle River’s success is linked to our strong community participation – our “Extended Family” of supporters. As we strive for continuing excellence, we seek to supplement the tuitions with additional funding which allows us to maintain our exemplary facility and educational standards. Yearly fundraising provides us with money needed for unexpected repairs and maintenance, for upgrades and additions to the facility, for teacher education and for improved materials and experiences for your children in the classroom.
What is the school's Annual Gala?
What is Turtle River's Emergency Plan?
What does my child do at school?
May I observe a Montessori classroom?
Immunizations & Sick Policy
What Physicals or Immunizations are required for my child?
What is the procedure if my child is sick?
In the interest of safeguarding the health of all the children, we will not accept a sick child in the classroom. If your child exhibits any of the following symptoms you will be notified and requested to make arrangements to have them picked up within one hour:
- Fever (100F or higher)
- Difficult/Rapid Breathing
- Stiff Neck
- Conjunctivitis (Pink Eye)
- Nasal Discharge
- Head Lice
Your child must remain at home until he/she is symptom-free for 24 hours. At the discretion of the school, we may request a doctor’s note for any of the following symptoms before your child returns to the classroom:
- Sore Throat
- Rash or Open Sores
If your child needs medication to be administered at school, you will need to fill out the Authorization for Medication.
How does Turtle River help prevent infectious illnesses?
In the school, as in your home and community, your child will be exposed to colds, flu and potentially other contagious conditions. Good hygiene remains the most effective preventive measure against illness. Use these guidelines at home and in the school to create lifelong healthy habits:
- Careful handwashing is the single most effective way to avoid infection. Wash thoroughly with soap and water. Sanitizers may be used in conjunction with handwashing, but not as a substitute.
- Keep all cuts and abrasions clean and covered with a clean bandage until healed. Wash hands immediately after changing a bandage.
- Keep shared surfaces clean.
- Avoid skin-to-skin contact with anyone who has uncovered skin infections.
- Do not share personal items like towels, clothing, hairbrushes.
- Encourage children not to put items into their mouth.
Properly cover a cough or sneeze by directing it into the upper arm. Potentially infectious microbes can be trapped by clothing and become inactive.