Public or Montessori Private School

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raamakoti
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Public or Montessori Private School

Post by raamakoti » Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:39 pm

Next year 2018 our little one would be starting Kindergarten. We are not sure between the choices.
  • She plays violin, can play about 16 songs out of memory and loves to perform on stage
  • Know her Multiplication tables upto 10 and numbers upto 100 and understands decimal place system
  • Can write like kids do. Also can read Dr. Seuss books with very little help from adults. Only strange words with no phonetic pattern i.e. Know, talk etc
  • Bi-lingual
Based on two teachers her violin and swim teacher both observed she is a motivated self learner and very competitive. She needs minimum guidance to learn new things very good at recognizing patterns. Both said she would flourish at private school.

No parents can be poor in praising their offspring. But wanted to see how fellow bogleheads decided about their child's education. In the area we live Public school is one of the best in the area

brak
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by brak » Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:54 pm

We sent our daughter to Montessori school in Wisconsin for grades 2-8, after thoroughly researching the public schools in our area. While it was expensive, we do not regret it for a second. What the Montessori system excels at is instilling an intellectual curiosity and love of learning. From my daughter's present experience in high school, these values are sorely lacking in our public school system. The only red flag that went up for me in your description was when you described your daughter as "competitive". This would not fly well in the Montessori school my daughter attended as there is a strong ethic toward collaboration rather than competition. Hope this helps, and good luck in your choice.

fishmonger
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by fishmonger » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:03 pm

Your daughter is obviously extremely bright but she's what, 4 years old? I would be way more concerned with her social/emotional skills than violin or writing skills. Let her play on the playground, get dirty, meet new friends, etc.

I am a firm believer in public school, period, as long as the school itself is adequate. I believe better life lessons are learned in public school than private, especially at that age

livesoft
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by livesoft » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:05 pm

We sent our daughter to the absolutely best private kindergarten in our county. She had to apply, pass exams, and get interviewed (and so did her parents). After that kindergarten we sent her to public school for grades 1-12. At the time in our area, private kindergarten was a full-day program, but public school kindergarten was a half-day. So it was pay for half-a-day of daycare or pay for private kindergarten.

Based on which universities and colleges high school graduates get accepted to and attend from these two schools, there was and still is no difference in student outcomes. I don't know about the suicide rates of graduates from both these school systems.
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lthenderson
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by lthenderson » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:12 pm

For out daughters it wasn't even a question of which to choose. The private school ranks as one of the top schools in the state and the public school in the lower half of all schools. The private school had only an average of ten kids per grade where the public school 25. The private school teaches religion, the public school can't. Because the private school can be selective in choosing its students, they learn at a much faster pace than public schools which leaves them time to enjoy other pursuits like music, science, etc. My oldest is an accomplished violinist and pianist.

Unfortunately the private school is only elementary so our oldest is now in the public system and is flourishing. She is well ahead of her peers academically and yet has a great set of values that she learned in the private school. Our youngest is now starting her journey through the private school.

finite_difference
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by finite_difference » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:17 pm

livesoft wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:05 pm
We sent our daughter to the absolutely best private kindergarten in our county. She had to apply, pass exams, and get interviewed (and so did her parents). After that kindergarten we sent her to public school for grades 1-12. At the time in our area, private kindergarten was a full-day program, but public school kindergarten was a half-day. So it was pay for half-a-day of daycare or pay for private kindergarten.

Based on which universities and colleges high school graduates get accepted to and attend from these two schools, there was and still is no difference in student outcomes. I don't know about the suicide rates of graduates from both these school systems.
Yeah I think this is a good way to do it..

1. You should know your public school system Elementary, Middle and High Schools. For the high school, what are the college acceptance rates, and how many make it into good schools, and how many into Top 20/Ivy League?

2. Compare the numbers to the private school system.

I went to a good public school and I had mostly good to excellent teachers. For Elementary I’d say all my teachers were good to excellent. For Middle School and High School, a couple of teachers sucked, and a couple were average, but at that point a single crappy teacher is “just” one class and doesn’t represent the entire curriculum. It’s probably hard to find a schoool where every teacher is excellent.
The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. - Thich Nhat Hanh

finite_difference
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by finite_difference » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:20 pm

raamakoti wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:39 pm
Next year 2018 our little one would be starting Kindergarten. We are not sure between the choices.
  • She plays violin, can play about 16 songs out of memory and loves to perform on stage
  • Know her Multiplication tables upto 10 and numbers upto 100 and understands decimal place system
  • Can write like kids do. Also can read Dr. Seuss books with very little help from adults. Only strange words with no phonetic pattern i.e. Know, talk etc
  • Bi-lingual
Based on two teachers her violin and swim teacher both observed she is a motivated self learner and very competitive. She needs minimum guidance to learn new things very good at recognizing patterns. Both said she would flourish at private school.

No parents can be poor in praising their offspring. But wanted to see how fellow bogleheads decided about their child's education. In the area we live Public school is one of the best in the area
Based on your description it sounds like you better just skip grade school all together: start prepping for the SATs and get those college applications sent out in next year or two :mrgreen:
The most precious gift we can offer anyone is our attention. - Thich Nhat Hanh

raamakoti
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by raamakoti » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:28 pm

fishmonger wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:03 pm
Your daughter is obviously extremely bright but she's what, 4 years old? I would be way more concerned with her social/emotional skills than violin or writing skills. Let her play on the playground, get dirty, meet new friends, etc.
Thank you for sharing your experiences
She will be 5 in Dec and by the start of next school year she will be 5 years and 10 months. Her social and emotional skills are good as well. We are in ohio and they told us they do not teach religion in school. They have program from K-8 only. After 8th grade she will have to go to public school. Or by then they may extend 4 more years of school on that campus.
By profession me and wife both are engineers and I teach her a lot through self invented games. By making achievement charts to get her desired toys for accomplishing something.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by TomatoTomahto » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:42 pm

I posted this a few years ago.
People are probably sick of me recommending Montessori, but my wife credits her Montessori schooling for her very successful career (more than her Seven Sisters college or MBA). I can't quantify the extent to which our kids' success is due to Montessori, but I can tell you that the kids who were in their Montessori cohort have all done very well, and we expect them to be accepted at some very good colleges (it's time for that now). Those kids would have done well regardless, but still ...

We made many things available for our kids, but often just relaxed and let their genetics and environment do the magic without heavy lifting.
College update on my kids and their cohort at Montessori (I only know of a few, but have not omitted any, I.e., not cherry picking):
Mine: Yale and Skidmore. Cohort: Stanford (also accepted to Harvard), Duke, 2 at Columbia, Princeton, West Point.

More than anything, Montessori teaches kids to “finish up.” My wife says that she can often spot the Montessori alum among her staff; it’s easy to do the first 90%, Montessori alums do 100%.

Fwiw, we only had pre-school and K available at the time in our local Montessori. We would have been delighted to do elementary if it were available.

DarthSage
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by DarthSage » Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:54 pm

A self-motivated child would do well in Montessori, but a competitive child may not. You might want to consider visiting the school to see if it seems like a good fit.

I have 4 children--all went to preschool, then all-day public kindergarten. Only 1 of the 4 went to Montessori--the youngest. It suited his personality. One complaint I've heard about Montessori is that, since it's child-led, they can skip doing skills that they don't care for, allowing them to get behind in, say, fine motor skills.

Except for preschool, we went public school all the way. It doesn't seem to have hurt our children. One thing I would caution you is, engineers can be very goal-focused--I know this, because DH and I both have engineering degrees. Only 1 out of our 4 is going the engineer track--he has the constellation of personality traits that are so common among engineers. It's easier for me to come out of my "engineering self" and appreciate my kids for who they are. DH grew up in a family of engineers, he still doesn't "get" how a bright person could be anything else.

I recommend finding a school that's a good fit for your child, whether it's public or private. No school is gong to offer the perfect combination of activities for your child, so be prepared to supplement with outside lessons. Some of the many things I've paid for through the years are: soccer (X3), Little League (X4), bagpipes, dance (X4), cello, cross country, art, gymnastics, violin (X2), swim (X4), trumpet, saxophone, German, viola, horseback riding, theater (X3), piano, Spanish. Probably many more! My point is, enrichment is important. And, follow the child.

raamakoti
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by raamakoti » Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:08 pm

DarthSage wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:54 pm
One thing I would caution you is, engineers can be very goal-focused--I know this, because DH and I both have engineering degrees.
I can relate to that - I noticed that when I was teaching her phonics. After few weeks of my teaching and I did not see any progress per my standard ofcourse. I had to step back and think what am I doing wrong. Then I had to somehow make phonics fun and play funny games with gibberish rhyming sounds. Then she got the hang of it. I try not to be very goal focused but like you said its hard to get by those instinct. Thats what we do for living project after project.
So teaching anything to a kid is just another project. But slowly I am learning that why kill the fun of learning to put a tick next to a project in mind.
We tried dance, gymnastic, soccer, art lessons, music lessons. So far swimming and violin worked.
She wants to be painter like Bob Ross. :happy

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Atilla » Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:12 pm

For a child like yours I can't imagine public school as anything other than a downgrade compared to what you can afford privately.
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by gasdoc » Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:35 pm

The Montessori school will nourish your child’s “I can do it” nature. As far as the competitive part, every child needs to be able to work with others. The part of Montessori that involves one child helping another is usually an older child teaching a younger child- good for both.

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brak
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by brak » Wed Nov 22, 2017 5:45 pm

There is also a lot of focus in Montessori on kids working in groups and learning how to collaborate.

DarthSage
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by DarthSage » Wed Nov 22, 2017 5:55 pm

raamakoti wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 4:08 pm
DarthSage wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:54 pm
One thing I would caution you is, engineers can be very goal-focused--I know this, because DH and I both have engineering degrees.
I can relate to that - I noticed that when I was teaching her phonics. After few weeks of my teaching and I did not see any progress per my standard ofcourse. I had to step back and think what am I doing wrong. Then I had to somehow make phonics fun and play funny games with gibberish rhyming sounds. Then she got the hang of it. I try not to be very goal focused but like you said its hard to get by those instinct. Thats what we do for living project after project.
So teaching anything to a kid is just another project. But slowly I am learning that why kill the fun of learning to put a tick next to a project in mind.
We tried dance, gymnastic, soccer, art lessons, music lessons. So far swimming and violin worked.
She wants to be painter like Bob Ross. :happy
Funny violin story--my third child started begging for violin lessons, right around her fifth birthday. I didn't take her too seriously--she was my third child, and I figured she'd probably take three lessons, then want a pony, you know? Well, the joke was on me--she switched to cello when she turned 8, and we've been told she has the talent to turn pro. For better or worse, though, she doesn't want to devote herself completely to cello, which a professional track would require. We're not the types to push it, so she'll remain a very talented amateur (for the most part--she gets the odd paid gig). She's now 14, and principle cellist of her HS orchestra...and wants to be a lawyer (where have I failed?)

At any rate, it really IS about listening to your child, and following her lead. Clearly, you are involved parents who are trying to help her be her best possible self. Mine currently span ages 11-22--all four have had their moments of stunning brilliance, and their moments of blinding idiocy.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:43 pm

The best school that you can afford. Montessori or otherwise.
The difference between average academic standards of public and the best private schools is tremendous.
1
She is bi-lingual. (asian?) Thus multi cultural and that is also an asset to grow on.
A school where she will feel comfortable with her fellow students. Where her "bi-lingual" abilities will make her feel comfortable (others of same ethnicity/culture/background/ cultural norms and values) as well as the cross cultural experience so valuable in the USA. And, others with similar abilities. And a school that does not teach to the lowest denominator but encourages and challenges each to strive. Your DW will have experienced this at Montessori and know this.
2
If she is gifted and talented, then a school where those abilities will be encouraged and challenged, and recognized. A school where teaching the gifted and talented is the norm rather than the exception. Where she will be comfortable vs a loner with "odd talents". A place where she will not have to reduce her abilities to better socialize or blend in with the others.
3
Did you have her IQ tested?
What percentile?

luckybamboo
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by luckybamboo » Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:59 pm

Both of our children attended Montessori schools for preschool (Age 3-6). Our son benefited the most from the system and accelerated his learning due to mixed age classroom that are self-driven by kids liking and potential while daughter chose to work on only arts and would avoid math/reading sections without the teacher nudging her.
But Montessori did an exceptional job in awakening natural curiosity and independent thinking in the both of our children. I know of a few children that started out in Montessori school vs regular school who are now in college and I have observed that Montessori school training is evident in their thinking and choices.
But, we live in exceptional public school district area and their elementary, middle and high school education has also played a huge role in shaping them.
At the end of the day, home environment and parents involvement and expectations also carry a lot of weight in overall development of child's personality and achievement.

raamakoti
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by raamakoti » Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:01 pm

Sandtrap wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:43 pm
The best school that you can afford. Montessori or otherwise.
  • She is bi-lingual. (asian?)
  • Did you have her IQ tested?
  • What percentile?
1. Affordability is not an issue
2. Yes Asian
3. Don't know how to test kids IQ

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Sandtrap
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Sandtrap » Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:16 pm

raamakoti wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:01 pm
Sandtrap wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 6:43 pm
The best school that you can afford. Montessori or otherwise.
  • She is bi-lingual. (asian?)
  • Did you have her IQ tested?
  • What percentile?
1. Affordability is not an issue
2. Yes Asian
3. Don't know how to test kids IQ
Much of my family and extended family, and also growing up, (also bilingual) have attended parochial, private, Montessori, and also public schools. The parents were mostly educators or business or financial background, also highly educated for the most part. The children ended up with careers in public service, trades, MD, attorneys, educators PhD, and engineers. In experiencing all this, I have noticed that the children that were recognized early on as gifted and talented or with great potential, that were nourished in the best educational environment, went to to graduate degrees and higher end professions. And, those with even average / normal abilities, were challenged to become the best in career as well as interpersonally, as they could be. An educational environment that encourages the highest denominator is without par.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by staythecourse » Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:39 pm

raamakoti wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:39 pm
Next year 2018 our little one would be starting Kindergarten. We are not sure between the choices.
  • She plays violin, can play about 16 songs out of memory and loves to perform on stage
  • Know her Multiplication tables upto 10 and numbers upto 100 and understands decimal place system
  • Can write like kids do. Also can read Dr. Seuss books with very little help from adults. Only strange words with no phonetic pattern i.e. Know, talk etc
  • Bi-lingual
Based on two teachers her violin and swim teacher both observed she is a motivated self learner and very competitive. She needs minimum guidance to learn new things very good at recognizing patterns. Both said she would flourish at private school.

No parents can be poor in praising their offspring. But wanted to see how fellow bogleheads decided about their child's education. In the area we live Public school is one of the best in the area
This is a personal decision. If cost is an issue then stop from thinking any further until you can find the finances. If you do have the finances then you have to do what you think is best for your child (mind you I did not say what is best as NO ONE knows that and no study has shown one is any better then another).

I looked into this A LOT when my kid was in PreK and found NO consistency of what makes a person successful at life let alone what school they came from. I know one likes to think you do "x" and you get "y" results. The only stuff I have found that matter is: Safety of the school, parents in the school who care about their kids education, and some production pressure on teachers to perform from their bosses (like any other job in life). Everything else is a toss up.

Good luck.
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htdrag11
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by htdrag11 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:54 pm

It depends.

Obviously if you have the means, do it. Our daughter went to Montessori for 3 years until we moved. Next town also has a Montessori, but financially we opted to go public; it was like $6k 30 years ago. It was a step backward for her; she regressed to the "norm". The good thing was she was able to moved up to 1st grade, despite her age.

Upon finishing 8th grade, she got into one of the magnet schools in our county; it was like private school with public funding, with average class size of about 15. It is still the top high school in our state and the top 20 in the country.

She went to an Ivy League university upon graduation. She has a very promising career but on the nerdy side, if that matters.

DW, my better half, and I never regretted the money spent during those 3 years.

GL.

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Flobes
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Flobes » Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:36 pm

In my community, K-8 Montessori is a charter school, free and publicly funded. Admission is by lottery. A dozen years ago, activist parents made it happen.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Alexa9 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 8:44 pm

Depends entirely on how good your public schools are. Depends on the teachers you get too. Find out who the good and bad ones are. High school is the biggest concern where drugs become a problem for some of the students and it can be just as bad in some private schools.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by jmg229 » Wed Nov 22, 2017 9:49 pm

Be sure to explore all of the charter schools in the area. Ohio has notoriously lax regulation of charter schools, but spend some time touring all of the options. With public choice options, private is not necessarily the best/only place to go for quality. I have seen very strong public schools as well as weaker private schools. Also, consider fit, both with your daughter's interests and personality and your own beliefs about education. Education is not an area in which I would assume that the highest priced option is the best one.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by LadyGeek » Wed Nov 22, 2017 10:20 pm

This thread is now in the Personal Consumer Issues forum (school).
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by hmw » Wed Nov 22, 2017 11:46 pm

Our 6-year old son has been enrolled at a Montessori school since pre-K. In general, he seems to like his school, and my wife is generally happy with the school. I am not as involved with school stuff as my wife. The primary reason we chose Montessori is that we have terrible public schools where we live. Regarding the question of "Nature vs Nurture", I am more in the Nature camp. As long as your kid is not sent to a failing school, I doubt that what your kid learns in K, or Grade 1 really makes that much of a difference in the big scheme of things.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by mega317 » Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:05 am

Honest question: do kids from Montessori do well because of Montessori or are kids sent to Montessori likely to do well anyway? Any research on this?

All of my public high school friends and I are doing quite well.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by celia » Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:01 am

livesoft wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 1:05 pm
We sent our daughter to the absolutely best private kindergarten in our county. She had to apply, pass exams, and get interviewed (and so did her parents). After that kindergarten we sent her to public school for grades 1-12. At the time in our area, private kindergarten was a full-day program, but public school kindergarten was a half-day. So it was pay for half-a-day of daycare or pay for private kindergarten.

Based on which universities and colleges high school graduates get accepted to and attend from these two schools
, there was and still is no difference in student outcomes. I don't know about the suicide rates of graduates from both these school systems.
Are you comparing the kids who went K-12 in Montessori to K-12 in public or are you comparing the kids who went Kinder in Montessori to Kinder in public? If you are comparing two sets of students just based on their kindergarten experience, I think the intervening years would have a much bigger impact on student "outcomes" than what kind of kindergarten they attended.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by livesoft » Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:55 am

I was not writing about Montessori at all. I was writing about graduates of the local public high school and the private high school.
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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by minimalistmarc » Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:23 am

This thread is exhausting to me.

I didn't even know 3 - 4 year olds could learn to play violin, or would want to. Sounds like helicopter parenting or OCD parenting. Maybe it's just because the child is gifted.

If your very young kid is always learning another language, getting music lessons and practicing, learning maths etc. when do they actually get time to be normal kids?

I guess I'm just a bad parent, with 2 kids under 3, I have no interest in the above things for my kids at this stage (apart from swimming, but just for fun).

I also would never send them to a Montesorri school or even a private school (unless the local public was absolutely terrible). sThe main thing that causes kids at paying schools to excell is the parents themselves.

In the UK, there is even now a compay looking to start up a no thrills private school company, for parents who just want their kid to go to a school where all the other parents value their kids education but don't care about the rest of the private school stuff.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by stoptothink » Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:55 am

staythecourse wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 7:39 pm


I looked into this A LOT when my kid was in PreK and found NO consistency of what makes a person successful at life let alone what school they came from. I know one likes to think you do "x" and you get "y" results. The only stuff I have found that matter is: Safety of the school, parents in the school who care about their kids education, and some production pressure on teachers to perform from their bosses (like any other job in life). Everything else is a toss up.

Good luck.
This. BY FAR the greatest influence on the success of OP's daughter academically and with future endeavors is what happens in the home, and that seems to be taken care of (in spades). Anecdotally, I have a sibling who attended a very prestigious private school (on a full athletic scholarship) while the other 6 of us went to one of the lowest ranked public schools in the entire state on California; guess which one of us 7 is the lowest achiever academically and career-wise? Also, this sibling's one son attended a Montessori pre-school and is now in 2nd grade at an expensive private school (funded by my brother's in-laws), and is way behind my 5yr old daughter academically who was in daycare and now attends a very mediocre public charter school for kindergarten. Having no direct personal experience with Montessori, my opinions about that are nonexistent.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by siamond » Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:21 am

When we moved to the US some 20 years ago, we made the mistake of putting our two young children to a local Montessori school, in the rush of the 10,000 things to adjust to when moving to a new country. We paid a good chunk of money, and they did absolutely nothing to help the transition of our kids to a new environment, a new language. After 6 months, it became evident that this was just the wrong choice, and our older kid was clearly in distress. Having a couple of months left in the school year, I extracted them from there (after a shouting match with the school director who tried to pin the situation on me, so nice of her), we found another private school and things got better. It was wicked expensive, and not that great though. Our children spent the rest of their school years in the public system, and they did an excellent job with them, they both graduated from college a couple of years back, and they are now fine young adults.

Montessori is just yet another conflated marketing story, with very little substance behind it. Sure, some kids do well because they'd do well anywhere, sure some establishments are properly much better than the one we experienced, but frankly, the OP should keep his/her hard-earned money for the college years. That is, if the local public school system is half-decent.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by onourway » Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:57 am

siamond wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:21 am
When we moved to the US some 20 years ago, we made the mistake of putting our two young children to a local Montessori school, in the rush of the 10,000 things to adjust to when moving to a new country. We paid a good chunk of money, and they did absolutely nothing to help the transition of our kids to a new environment, a new language. After 6 months, it became evident that this was just the wrong choice, and our older kid was clearly in distress. Having a couple of months left in the school year, I extracted them from there (after a shouting match with the school director who tried to pin the situation on me, so nice of her), we found another private school and things got better. It was wicked expensive, and not that great though. Our children spent the rest of their school years in the public system, and they did an excellent job with them, they both graduated from college a couple of years back, and they are now fine young adults.

Montessori is just yet another conflated marketing story, with very little substance behind it. Sure, some kids do well because they'd do well anywhere, sure some establishments are properly much better than the one we experienced, but frankly, the OP should keep his/her hard-earned money for the college years. That is, if the local public school system is half-decent.
I'm not convinced there is a huge difference in outcomes one way or another, but if money were no object all of our children would have continued Monetessori for as long as possible. We have an excellent public school system, but the Montessori school is just a much more pleasant place to spend your day. The kids come home much less wound up and much less stressed after a day of Montessori vs. a day of public school. That has to make an impact somehow - even if it's just in the kid's well-being.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by DarthSage » Thu Nov 23, 2017 6:47 am

minimalistmarc wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:23 am
This thread is exhausting to me.

I didn't even know 3 - 4 year olds could learn to play violin, or would want to. Sounds like helicopter parenting or OCD parenting. Maybe it's just because the child is gifted.

If your very young kid is always learning another language, getting music lessons and practicing, learning maths etc. when do they actually get time to be normal kids?

I guess I'm just a bad parent, with 2 kids under 3, I have no interest in the above things for my kids at this stage (apart from swimming, but just for fun).

I also would never send them to a Montesorri school or even a private school (unless the local public was absolutely terrible). sThe main thing that causes kids at paying schools to excell is the parents themselves.

In the UK, there is even now a compay looking to start up a no thrills private school company, for parents who just want their kid to go to a school where all the other parents value their kids education but don't care about the rest of the private school stuff.
As to the bolded, I mentioned up-thread about my daughter begging for violin lessons, and I didn't take her seriously. Almost 10 years later, she's still very serious about her strings--but doesn't want a professional career in that area. It DOES happen. But, I would 100% agree that it's not typical. And I would also add that music helps develop parts of the brain, so even if your child isn't a virtuoso, music will benefit them.

I think a lot of this discussion is chicken-and-egg--are students successful because they went to a good preschool, or did they go to a good preschool because they have educated, intelligent, involved parents who want to optimize the chances of success? It's probably more of the latter. I don't doubt that the OP, if trapped in a cabin in the woods with his family, would read his child the chainsaw manual, if that was the only thing available, because reading is important.

I can also tell you that my oldest went to a standard preschool (3X/week, 3 hours a day), and stood toe-to-toe with Montessori kids in HS. But, she also showed strong language skills, which we encouraged by sending her to German lessons. My kids all learned to read young, and I felt expanding her language was a better approach than reading harder books. Even though she could read books for teens, I felt she shouldn't, due to content. Anyway, life continues...and she graduated college this May. Double major--elementary ed./bilingual ed., and she's teaching English language learners. So clearly there was something there, even when she was very young. Yeah, she won't get rich or famous, but she'll tell you she's got her dream job--not bad at age 22.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Muri » Thu Nov 23, 2017 7:37 am

As a public school teacher, I would say it depends on the quality of your public schools. Ask parents of older children what their experiences have been in the public schools.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by TomatoTomahto » Thu Nov 23, 2017 8:58 am

DarthSage wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 6:47 am
Anyway, life continues...and she graduated college this May. Double major--elementary ed./bilingual ed., and she's teaching English language learners. So clearly there was something there, even when she was very young. Yeah, she won't get rich or famous, but she'll tell you she's got her dream job--not bad at age 22.
Today is Thanksgiving, and I am feeling thankful that my oldest is in her dream job, in the Peace Corps, helping kids who have third world problems.

Congrats to your daughter, DarthSage. I was an immigrant in the dark ages, and was taught English in a way that was emotionally brutal. Three cheers for educational progress in ESL :beer :beer :beer

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by celia » Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:13 am

Muri wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 7:37 am
As a public school teacher, I would say it depends on the quality of your public schools. Ask parents of older children what their experiences have been in the public schools.
Most people think their public schools are good, even when they're not. "Terrible" schools only exist elsewhere. After all, who would knowingly send their kids to terrible schools? That's part of why statewide testing started. Many parents had no idea how their schools compared to those elsewhere in the state and how their child compared to others in the same school. (I know there are other criteria besides testing to consider and that the community you choose to live in and the parent education and income are correlated with better education for their kids.)

I think it is better to ask public school teachers where they send THEIR CHILDREN. Teachers have a better sense of how schools compare since they know more students than the typical parent does. And they know where other teachers send their children.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by harrychan » Thu Nov 23, 2017 11:45 am

We were faced with a similar dilemma a few years ago. Our older son was well ahead of his peers. For K, we went ahead and put him into a private school and he did very well. For 1st grade, we decided to give our public school a try. After all, it is a blue ribbon school that was recognized in the state and one of the reason why we bought our house. It was a big mistake and a wasted year. There was nothing taught at the school that my son didn't already know and the teacher did not give him any attention as she had to spend time on those who were not ready for 2nd grade. Not only that, due to the state cutting funds to education, music and arts programs were completely cut. The needle that broke the camel's back happened when my son came home and asked us why did his teacher throw away his homework. Apparently, the teacher didn't bother to grade or hand back the homework and simply threw it away. We confronted the teacher, who apologized, but it was enough for us to pull him out.

If you can afford it, private school is a no brainer in my opinion.

If you are in a public school where the teacher has capacity to tailor the education to each child then good for you. Otherwise, that is very rare from my experience.
This is not legal or certified financial advice but you know that already.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Afty » Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:40 pm

As I understand it, most evidence points to nature rather than nurture -- children of highly educated parents tend to do well regardless of where they go to school.

Some references:
Chapter 5 of Freakonomics
http://pricetheory.uchicago.edu/levitt/ ... tt2003.pdf
http://www.nber.org/papers/w13443

There's also evidence that individual teachers matter much more than the school, and that great teachers can be found everywhere, not just at the highest rated schools:
http://freakonomics.com/2010/08/17/bett ... -teachers/

That said, we made the opposite choice ourselves and paid an exorbitant premium to live in one of the best school districts in our area. So I guess I can talk the talk, but not walk the walk. :)

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by TomatoTomahto » Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:44 pm

That said, we made the opposite choice ourselves and paid an exorbitant premium to live in one of the best school districts in our area. So I guess I can talk the talk, but not walk the walk.
Yes. It’s all well and good, until it’s your kid’s happiness and future on the line.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Sandtrap » Thu Nov 23, 2017 12:46 pm

minimalistmarc wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:23 am
This thread is exhausting to me.

I didn't even know 3 - 4 year olds could learn to play violin, or would want to. Sounds like helicopter parenting or OCD parenting. Maybe it's just because the child is gifted.

If your very young kid is always learning another language, getting music lessons and practicing, learning maths etc. when do they actually get time to be normal kids?

I guess I'm just a bad parent, with 2 kids under 3, I have no interest in the above things for my kids at this stage (apart from swimming, but just for fun).

I also would never send them to a Montesorri school or even a private school (unless the local public was absolutely terrible). sThe main thing that causes kids at paying schools to excell is the parents themselves.

In the UK, there is even now a compay looking to start up a no thrills private school company, for parents who just want their kid to go to a school where all the other parents value their kids education but don't care about the rest of the private school stuff.
cultural > bilingual > cultural > academic integration > cultural
This is similar to 2 PhD engineering parents with a young child in Korea, Taiwan, etc. There's no separation between linguistics, culture, and academic environment. The entirety is fertile, beyond school from 8-2pm. In some cultures and countries, IE: Japan, There's school year round and after school school. It just is.
No right or wrong or comparatives. Just different for everyone.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by jerkstore » Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:05 pm

My 3 boys are in public schools. The school system is a good suburban district with about 18,000 students.

2 of them have been identified as "Gifted" through 3rd grade testing, and were invited to a self contained gifted class at a school different than their original elementary. The testing occurs in 3rd grade because that is when the data shows the IQ testing is a reliable predictor. When we received the first invitation we encouraged my son to accept, because he was very very bored at school. It had become a grind. He also did not relate well with kids his age. He related well with adults, but struggled with his peers. We hoped he would meet other kids like him and make friends. At the new school, their class size shrunk and the resources grew. Class went from 26 to 16. He made new friends and was able to relate with the gifted kids. The new school was a huge success and fit him like a glove, so we encouraged my second son to accept as well. My second son would have been fine in the regular elementary, but because we really like the gifted school we encouraged him to go. My 3rd son has not taken the test (currently in first grade), but he also is flourishing in the regular elementary school, both socially and academically, and we have no concerns.

By way of example on resources, my 5th grader gets bused to the middle school to take Advanced 8th grade math, then bused back to the gifted class. This happens 5 days a week, and he is the only kid on the bus. They have science fairs, invention conventions, chess clubs, lego robotics, etc...

All this to say, our public school system has significantly more resources than our local private schools. The gifted school teachers are all specially trained and do very well with this group of kids.

I can't imagine a better scenario for us, than what we have through the public schools. I really do think the issue of public vs. private vs. home school is best addressed on a case by case basis.

Good luck :sharebeer

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by SR II » Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:34 pm

jerkstore wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 1:05 pm
...I really do think the issue of public vs. private vs. home school is best addressed on a case by case basis...
Best advice I've read in this entire thread!

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by raamakoti » Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:29 pm

minimalistmarc wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:23 am
This thread is exhausting to me.
I didn't even know 3 - 4 year olds could learn to play violin, or would want to. Sounds like helicopter parenting or OCD parenting. Maybe it's just because the child is gifted.
If your very young kid is always learning another language, getting music lessons and practicing, learning maths etc. when do they actually get time to be normal kids?
I guess I'm just a bad parent, with 2 kids under 3, I have no interest in the above things for my kids at this stage (apart from swimming, but just for fun).
I also would never send them to a Montesorri school or even a private school (unless the local public was absolutely terrible). sThe main thing that causes kids at paying schools to excell is the parents themselves.

In the UK, there is even now a compay looking to start up a no thrills private school company, for parents who just want their kid to go to a school where all the other parents value their kids education but don't care about the rest of the private school stuff.
Thank you all for your feedback -
1. We are not helicopter or OCD parents. We don't derive sense of pride in showing off to others what our girl can do. None of her friends know she plays violin.
2. Suzuki style teaching start violin, cello and other instruments at very young age. We don't play any instrument and do not have any background in music in entire family. All suzuki students irrespective of race play instruments at very young age. Where others learned couple of songs, my daughter picked up 16 of them in the same time, anything music and she is all in. There is no pressure to practice at home, some days she plays until her fingers hurt and other days she does not even pick up violin. Please tell me how would you manage a 4.5 year old who cries because she could not play like a 40 year old teacher.
3. Math and phonics - we have a consistent 10 min routine for these. I set the alarm on my phone for 10 mins and once the bell rings session is over. 10 mins a day = 60 hours of teaching a year. Now I don't do phonics routine. In the middle of drawing or painting she would stop everything and grab a book and read as long as she wants and then put the book down sayings, I read enough. All I do say few words of encouragement, like I could not read that book until I was 8 years old etc.
4. you will be surprised how much you can teach without taking away their kids fun time, I did not read her story books to her until she was 3, then started teaching phonics. But I told her lot of stories, before bed time and whenever she wanted. I made up lot of stories to include her fav characters.
5. We wanted to send her to public schools, two of her teachers specifically said she would flourish in self directed environment. so just wanted to check what other people here have done.
6. Language - me and my wife speak our native language at home and english she learned at daycare. She was such a fast learner that I had to teach english alphabets backwards to keep her engaged. Now she can say A to z and Z to A at same speed.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Sandtrap » Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:53 pm

raamakoti wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:29 pm
Thank you all for your feedback -
1. We are not helicopter or OCD parents. We don't derive sense of pride in showing off to others what our girl can do. None of her friends know she plays violin.
2. Suzuki style teaching start violin, cello and other instruments at very young age. We don't play any instrument and do not have any background in music in entire family. All suzuki students irrespective of race play instruments at very young age. Where others learned couple of songs, my daughter picked up 16 of them in the same time, anything music and she is all in. There is no pressure to practice at home, some days she plays until her fingers hurt and other days she does not even pick up violin. Please tell me how would you manage a 4.5 year old who cries because she could not play like a 40 year old teacher.
3. Math and phonics - we have a consistent 10 min routine for these. I set the alarm on my phone for 10 mins and once the bell rings session is over. 10 mins a day = 60 hours of teaching a year. Now I don't do phonics routine. In the middle of drawing or painting she would stop everything and grab a book and read as long as she wants and then put the book down sayings, I read enough. All I do say few words of encouragement, like I could not read that book until I was 8 years old etc.
4. you will be surprised how much you can teach without taking away their kids fun time, I did not read her story books to her until she was 3, then started teaching phonics. But I told her lot of stories, before bed time and whenever she wanted. I made up lot of stories to include her fav characters.
5. We wanted to send her to public schools, two of her teachers specifically said she would flourish in self directed environment. so just wanted to check what other people here have done.
6. Language - me and my wife speak our native language at home and english she learned at daycare. She was such a fast learner that I had to teach english alphabets backwards to keep her engaged. Now she can say A to z and Z to A at same speed.
And thank you for most graciously posting and sharing your experiences as well.
Best of luck with your children. They are fortunate to have wonderfully conscientious parents.
You will no doubt make the best decisions for their future.
j :D

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Wellfleet » Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:36 pm

I maintain that this is a very personal decision for each family, and it is fascinating that on this website where we follow the facts that passive investing often produces superior results, the opinions in these other threads are not based on data whatsoever, just anecdotes.

We will send our kids to the top public schools that we moved for in our state but if money was no issue I would probably send my child to a top private school, it couldnt hurt, particularly if finances weren’t a consideration.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by halfnine » Thu Nov 23, 2017 4:39 pm

brak wrote:
Wed Nov 22, 2017 12:54 pm
We sent our daughter to Montessori school in Wisconsin for grades 2-8, after thoroughly researching the public schools in our area. While it was expensive, we do not regret it for a second. What the Montessori system excels at is instilling an intellectual curiosity and love of learning. From my daughter's present experience in high school, these values are sorely lacking in our public school system. The only red flag that went up for me in your description was when you described your daughter as "competitive". This would not fly well in the Montessori school my daughter attended as there is a strong ethic toward collaboration rather than competition. Hope this helps, and good luck in your choice.
This.

In what I've seen in the Montessori primary and elementary schools for our kids:

Kids who learn via praise don't thrive as well in a Montessori classroom as those who learn without
Kids who learn with rewards don't thrive as well in a Montessori classroom as those who learn without
Kids who are competitive don't thrive as well in a Montessori classroom as those who are collaborative
Kids who start later don't thrive as well in a Montessori classrooms as those who start at age 3.
Kids whose parenting philosophy or culture conflicts with the Montessori environment don't thrive as well as those whose parenting philosophy or culture does.

Also, keep in mind, that not all Montessori schools are created equal. There are many Montessori teachers out there that I would not want teaching my children.

Finally. FWIW. Where we live the public school teachers send their kids to the Montessori school while the Montessori school teachers send their kids to the public schools.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by DarthSage » Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:59 pm

raamakoti wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 2:29 pm


Thank you all for your feedback -
1. We are not helicopter or OCD parents. We don't derive sense of pride in showing off to others what our girl can do. None of her friends know she plays violin.
2. Suzuki style teaching start violin, cello and other instruments at very young age. We don't play any instrument and do not have any background in music in entire family. All suzuki students irrespective of race play instruments at very young age. Where others learned couple of songs, my daughter picked up 16 of them in the same time, anything music and she is all in. There is no pressure to practice at home, some days she plays until her fingers hurt and other days she does not even pick up violin. Please tell me how would you manage a 4.5 year old who cries because she could not play like a 40 year old teacher.
3. Math and phonics - we have a consistent 10 min routine for these. I set the alarm on my phone for 10 mins and once the bell rings session is over. 10 mins a day = 60 hours of teaching a year. Now I don't do phonics routine. In the middle of drawing or painting she would stop everything and grab a book and read as long as she wants and then put the book down sayings, I read enough. All I do say few words of encouragement, like I could not read that book until I was 8 years old etc.
4. you will be surprised how much you can teach without taking away their kids fun time, I did not read her story books to her until she was 3, then started teaching phonics. But I told her lot of stories, before bed time and whenever she wanted. I made up lot of stories to include her fav characters.
5. We wanted to send her to public schools, two of her teachers specifically said she would flourish in self directed environment. so just wanted to check what other people here have done.
6. Language - me and my wife speak our native language at home and english she learned at daycare. She was such a fast learner that I had to teach english alphabets backwards to keep her engaged. Now she can say A to z and Z to A at same speed.
I think, for people who don't have a child so motivated, it can be difficult to wrap their brain around it. My younger daughter (the cellist)demonstrated she could read when she was 28mo. I didn't teach her--I was more interested in potty training! And she was beyond beginning words when I realized it. She was reading adult books by age 4. She went to a regular preschool (3X/week, 3 hours a day)--nobody there knew she could read. Then one day, we're all waiting for the doors to open--kids running around, parents chatting, and the teachers had a sign with notices--"Field trip Friday", that kind of thing. Suddenly, above the din, a little voice says, "Attention Parents. The monthly fee for October is due today. Thanks, Ms A and Ms T." There was SILENCE! Then a mom says, "Good Lord, [DD14]". That was the end of that secret! And I'm sure some parents thought I worked with her to the point of exhaustion, but no.

And what's funny, too, about my cello kid--DH played instruments as kids, like a lot of people do--he played trumpet through middle school, I took piano lessons. Neither of us excelled, and strings were a foreign concept. So, we didn't see it coming. We never used Suzuki with our daughter, because she was capable of reading music from the beginning, but I've heard good things about it, especially for young learners. Developing an "ear" for music is very important to playing.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by Sandtrap » Thu Nov 23, 2017 8:40 pm

DarthSage wrote:
Thu Nov 23, 2017 5:59 pm

I think, for people who don't have a child so motivated, it can be difficult to wrap their brain around it. My younger daughter (the cellist)demonstrated she could read when she was 28mo. I didn't teach her--I was more interested in potty training! And she was beyond beginning words when I realized it. She was reading adult books by age 4. She went to a regular preschool (3X/week, 3 hours a day)--nobody there knew she could read. Then one day, we're all waiting for the doors to open--kids running around, parents chatting, and the teachers had a sign with notices--"Field trip Friday", that kind of thing. Suddenly, above the din, a little voice says, "Attention Parents. The monthly fee for October is due today. Thanks, Ms A and Ms T." There was SILENCE! Then a mom says, "Good Lord, [DD14]". That was the end of that secret! And I'm sure some parents thought I worked with her to the point of exhaustion, but no.

And what's funny, too, about my cello kid--DH played instruments as kids, like a lot of people do--he played trumpet through middle school, I took piano lessons. Neither of us excelled, and strings were a foreign concept. So, we didn't see it coming. We never used Suzuki with our daughter, because she was capable of reading music from the beginning, but I've heard good things about it, especially for young learners. Developing an "ear" for music is very important to playing.
+1
Absolutely true.
Unrecognized or un-nurtured, or thrust into the average environment, a gifted child can be lonely indeed. The "greater part of the bell curve" simply does not work. Like "flatland" 1D vs 3D to the child.

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Re: Public or Montessori Private School

Post by JBTX » Thu Nov 23, 2017 10:23 pm

In most situations, if the public school is considered a good one, I’d be hard pressed to pay close to
10k per year, give or take, for a private school. There have been multiple studies that have shown when you adjust for demographics public schools are as good as private schools.

Spending extra money on elementary school seems even more pointless.

Look at it this way. If you go to public school you can take 10k and spend on private tutors and coaches if you are feeling guilty about not spending the money on your kids.

Having said all that I do think the Montessori approach is generally a good one. I think some of it is overboard (no bright colors to avoid overstimulating kids) but most of it seems pretty sound.

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