frequently asked questions
1.) Why should you choose a Cobb School, Montessori education for your child?
The period of development from birth to age 12 is when most of your child's intelligence and social characteristics are formed. This is also when your child is most receptive, curious, and excited about exploring the world around him or her. A Montessori classroom nurtures that excitement and curiosity by offering a variety of materials to stimulate and intrigue your child. The Cobb School, Montessori teacher is trained to recognize when a child is ready to learn a new skill, and to foster his or her natural instincts and abilities. Your child is valued as an independent thinker and encouraged to make choices on his or her own.
A Cobb School, Montessori education provides students of all ages with information in a way they can understand and enjoy. Learning is fun, empowering, and custom-fit to suit your child's individual learning style.
2.) Why do the children often seem so quiet and serious?
The Montessori school day is divided into work periods and play periods. Work periods usually last about two hours in the morning for the youngest children, with another two hours in the afternoon for those older students who stay a full day. During these times, you are likely to see children intent upon learning their alphabet using letters cut out of sandpaper, or exploring music using a set of bells. One may be studying basic math concepts using beads strung together in groups of five, ten, etc., while another student is painting or making a collage.
The Montessori environment gives children the opportunity and ability to choose the work that most interests them, as a result they tend to remain focused and attentive while immersed in their work. Children feel satisfied, peaceful, and joyful when they are deeply immersed in their work. Developing concentration is an important skill for life-long learning.
3.) What do you have to offer that my child can't get at other local schools?
The Montessori approach to education is unique. The materials used to teach reading, writing, arithmetic, geography, science, music and history are all unique to the Montessori classroom.
Dr. Maria Montessori, a physician who developed the materials and educational philosophy upon which our school is built, recognized the important impact that physiological and neurological development have on a child's learning. The classroom materials she developed for our youngest students, for example, take abstract ideas and put them in a concrete form that makes sense to these developing minds.
Unlike other schools, your child will also share his or her Montessori classroom with older and/or younger students. Our Primary classrooms have children age 2 1/2 to 6 learning alongside each other; our Lower Elementary classrooms have students 6 to 9, and our Upper Elementary class is comprised of students ages 9 to 12. This way students learn from their peers, and respect their own and each other's ability to be a teacher as well as a student.
4.) What makes your school special?
We are committed not only to helping your child learn the information and the skills he or she needs in order to cope with the challenges of today's world: we are also committed to nurturing your child's love of learning and to making education a fun, relevant activity for your child. Because we believe that education is more than strong academics, our school is a place to learn not only facts, but also to learn respect for the rights of others, and to learn to make choices that reflect a healthy self-confidence as well as a social conscience.
5.) What part does the teacher play in 'guiding' the child?
Montessori teachers generally give direct instruction to individual children or small groups rather than to the entire class. They are trained to observe their students, stepping in when they see a child is "stuck" or ready to learn a new skill. This allows the children to learn independently, with the guidance and support of a teacher whose primary focus is observing how your child learns and tapping into those styles and approaches that work best for your child.
6.) What are the families like who make up your school community?
Many of our families live in the Farmington Valley, Hartford and Litchfield County areas. Our school is located off Route 44 between Avon and Granby, making us geographically convenient for commuters into Hartford from the western regions.
We are a culturally diverse community, with a significant international population, as the Montessori approach is recognized world-wide. Our families share a common commitment to quality education that fosters a love of learning, a deep sense of self-esteem and respect for others.
Our families are also strongly committed to understanding the Montessori approach and supporting the development of their children into independent, creative thinkers.