The concepts of Montessori and kindergarten generally create confusion among people and they are very different from each other in reality. Let us get into the definition of these two concepts and let us also understand the important differences between the two and also similarities if any:
The fundamental difference is that kindergarten is a system that is present in all schools, while Montessori is an instruction medium that is very particular and not all schools adopt this method. This concept can be employed by play schools, kindergarten and nursery schools. Kindergarten is actually a part of the educational system and some Kindergarten schools also follow the Montessori approach of teaching the kids.
Adoption of Montessori in Kindergarten:
When talking about Montessori system, it makes use of an open approach and kids are permitted to be creative and they are also permitted to express themselves in all aspects of education. Under Montessori system, individual attention is given to each and every child on the basis of his/her nature. Under this method, teachers will have to adapt their style of instruction to suit the kids. Children will have to adapt to this system.
When it comes to the age of kids admitted under these two systems of education, Kindergarten system generally admits kids between the age group of three and five years, which forms the basis for primary education. When it comes to Montessori system, it is basically for kids up to the age of 6 years. Even, it can be used for teaching older kids too. Even, teenage children have shown success under Montessori system of education.
Role played by teachers:
When it comes to Kindergarten system, the teacher will decide the medium of instruction and the teacher is also responsible for all the activities taking place in the class. On the other hand, in the case of Montessori system, teachers generally have a limited role to play and they are mainly involved in the act of observing and supervising the kids. Teachers under this system generally do not instruct the kids as to what is right and what is wrong and they are motivated to identify varied possibilities on their own. In the Montessori set up, learning through experiments and guidance is the important deal.
How about the role played by parents?
Similar to that of teachers, parents also play a limited role under Montessori system. Schools generally instruct the parents to permit the kids to experiment at homes. On the other hand, under kindergarten method, parents have an important role in shaping the kids. They are instructed to follow the same method of teaching as followed by teachers at school, even at homes.
Individual pace of learning:
Under Montessori Method, kids are encouraged to learn at their own pace. On the other hand, in traditional kindergarten method, kids will have to adapt themselves to the pace of the classroom. Otherwise, they will have difficulty in coping with the class.
Montessori and kindergarten methods are quite varied and both have their own benefits for sure. It is believed that kids learning under Montessori system are able to achieve all-round development and that they will be in a position to think more independently as against kids learning under traditional Kindergarten system.