Transitioning from an In-Home Daycare to Montessori

Children develop and are able to transition at different ages which is often stressful for you as a parent. Knowing when and if your child is ready to move from an in-home daycare to a more structured environment is not always an easy decision. Choosing the appropriate environment can make the move a lot easier.

Transitioning from an In-Home Daycare

When you are considering the move for your child from an in-home daycare setting to a more structured environment, you should arrange to meet the teachers they will work with. Building a good relationship with your child’s future teacher will help to ease some of the stress you may be feeling. Talk to them about any concerns or anxieties you may have, and share how you would like to be contacted regarding your child’s progress.

Gradual transition

Many children do better if they are gradually introduced to a new environment. Discuss with the school whether it is possible to start out with shorter classroom times and slowly introduce your child to a classroom setting. There are also children who do better if they are not expected to go back and forth so you will need to know your child and which will work best for them.

Children need time to adjust

Children need time to adjust to change. Make sure you give yourself and your child the time to adjust and become comfortable in the new environment. Your child may need time to actually ‘grieve’ leaving the setting they have become attached and comfortable with. This is part of a transition period and your child will need time to build a new relationship and adjust to their new setting.

Expectations of the classroom

Many parents think that by moving their child from an in-home daycare which has been low-key and relatively quiet to a classroom will be drastic. They often envision a room full of bustling children creating a lot of noise. The Montessori environment radiates with respect and harmony. Parents will find a busy hum as the children interact, yet there is great respect for quiet play.

Students in the Montessori classroom are encouraged to work together and care for their environment. They take turns caring for the room and any pets, plants, or other items that need daily attending to. They are taught to live in a community and to become independent within that environment.

The Montessori classroom

There are often students of mixed ages within the Montessori classroom. The flow and design of the classroom is to create a learning environment for your child that will encourage choice and interest. Spaces are suited for groups to play and there are quiet areas where you child can find time to be alone. There are also well-defined areas for the curriculum where your child will be encouraged to investigate.

Start your child on a successful start to their future. Contact our Bay Area Montessori school today and schedule a tour to see what they have to offer your child.



The Supportive Parent & Successful Child

In order for a child to be successful in school, they need to have supportive parents.

While children get on the bus and head to school on their own, they still need to know that their parents are there in spirit supporting them. If you want to be as supportive to your child as possible, there are a few things that you can do.

Ask Questions

It is a good idea to ask your child questions about school often. When you ask them what they are doing in school and what they learned each day, they will see that you are as interested in their education as they are. When you ask questions, it will make your child feel more comfortable coming to you if they are struggling in any areas.

Meet Your Child’s Teacher

It is a good idea to attend the open house at your child’s school, as well as the parent-teacher conferences. When you know your child’s teacher and you can keep up with their progress, you will have a better idea of what your child is excelling in and what they need to work on. You will also know that if your child needs any specialized services, such as a tutor or extra help after school.

Set Up a Regular Homework Time

Part of being a supportive parent is being a strict parent. It is a good idea to set a regular time each day for your child to work on their homework. Make sure that they are in a well-lit area, with all of their school supplies, and they the area is free of distractions. After your child has completed their homework, you should check it. When your child sees that you are as invested in their homework as they are, they will feel that you are being supportive.

Help Your Child Prepare for Tests

When your child has a test coming up, you should do everything that you can to help them prepare. You can quiz them on their facts while you are cooking dinner, or you can create a practice test for them to complete. The more help you give your child before a test, the better they will do on the test.

Get Involved with School Events

Supporting your child in their education includes more than supporting them academically. It is a good idea to get involved with the events that are going on at school. If there is a parent-teacher organization, you should join. If your child’s class needs chaperons on a field trip, you should volunteer. If your teacher is looking for help in the classroom, volunteer. The more involved you get with your child, the more they will feel supported.

The teachers at Montessori School of Pleasanton focus on helping your child succeed. They also make parent involvement a top priority. For more information about our Montessori program, contact the school to set up a tour.

Helping Your Child Read at Home

As parents, you want to provide all your children with the best foundation for educational success. Learning to read is an integral part of your child’s academic process. Children learn vital language skills from their everyday environment.

Encouraging Reading at Home

Providing a learning environment at home to encourage language skills will aid in your child’s future reading ability. Enhancing your home environment for reading potential does not require large changes.

  • Be an Example: a child who sees parents reading will want to mimic the task. Reading books, magazines, or newspapers show your child you value the practice. While you are engaged in reading, let your child read. He or she may not understand the word. The natural curiosity through mimicking you will help down the road.
  • Read to Your Child: Even a short book with pictures will aid in the learning process for language skills. As you and your child look at the pages, sounding out the words is a vital learning experience.
  • Play Games: With the numerous games available, learning the correct phonetics of words helps a child’s natural progression toward reading. Tracing letters in sand or using picture cards may be a simple project with a beneficial outcome. Building blocks with letters help children identify the basics of the language through play.
  • Get Moving: Numerous age appropriate songs encourage both movement and language skills. Duplicating the songs instructions provides a fun home activity.
  • Use Art: Children love to get messy. Use art as a way to inspire creativity and build language skills. Painting traced letters will provide both a learning and fun experience. Or, use glue to trace a letter. As you child glues pasta noodles to the letter, discuss the sound of the letter. Provide examples of the words that begin with the same letter.
  • Use Conversation: In the Montessori school setting, the multi-age group learning environment allows younger children to converse with older peers. Resulting in the fine-tuning of language skills. Use the same process at home by encouraging conversation.

Duplicating Montessori language projects at home will provide numerous activities to gain your child’s interest in reading.

Your Montessori school teacher will prepare a language enriched environment to help nurture your child’s natural curiosity for learning. The primary focus of both classroom and home environment for Montessori language is your child’s personal interests.

To see how a child-centered learning environment would be beneficial for your child’s natural learning process, please contact us at Day Star Montessori for more information and to schedule a tour.

Fun Summer Math Projects for Toddlers

Before your toddler starts kindergarten, it is a good idea that they have some basic math skills. The summer before school begins, there are a few fun math projects that you can do with your toddler to help them learn these basic skills.

Counting With Egg Cartons

This is a great game to teach children to count, and you likely have all of the necessary items right in your home.

You Will Need:

  • An empty egg carton
  • A bag of M&M’s

Number the spaces in the egg carton from 1-12. Have your child place the number of M&M’s in each numbered hole. If they get all of the answers right, they can eat the M&M’s as a reward.

Number Recognition Game

This game will teach your child to recognize numbers 1-9. It is also fun.

You Will Need:

  • Bag of balloons
  • Laundry basket

Blow up 9 of the balloons. Number each balloon and place them on the ground. Give your child a number and have them find the balloon that coincides with that number. Have them place the balloon in the laundry basket. This time, give the child a number again and have them find it in the laundry basket. When your child finds the balloon, they can pop it.

Counting in Nature

This game will give your child a chance to get some fresh air while they are building their math skills.

You Will Need:

  • A notebook
  • A pen

Before your nature hike, make a list of things in nature for your child to find. The list should include one item, then two of another item, three of another item, and so on. The game ends when your child has found all of everything on the list.

Grocery Shopping Fun

You can make your weekly grocery shopping trip, and turn it into a learning game.

You Will Need:

  • A supermarket trip

While you are shopping, but your child in charge of putting items in the cart. For example, you can tell your child to get 5 cans of vegetables. They would need to count out the 5 cans and put them in the cart. You can even add some subtraction to the game, and tell your child to get 7 potatoes, and then take 3 away.

Funny Money

This game will not only teach your child to count, it will also introduce them to money and budgeting.

You Will Need:

  • A package of play money
  • Post-It notes
  • A sharpie marker

Write money amounts between $1 and $9 on several Post-It notes and stick it on various items around the home. Have your child choose the items that they want to buy, and pay you for each item with their fake money.

The Day Star Montessori Children’s Learning Center applies the educational philosophy and methods of Maria Montessori, M.D., a renowned Italian physician and child educator. For our Montessori children math is more than rote memorization. Our children learn the base 10 system with cube material that is properly scaled. For more information on math for toddlers, contact us today.


Sensory Roller Painting

Montessori principles base learning on a child’s natural development in a well-prepared, enticing environment. Children love the opportunity to explore the world around them. Montessori instructors use children’s natural curiosity to build upon interests and desire for knowledge. According to Montessori principles, children have an absorbent mind with individual interests and needs.

Hands-on activities inspire and teach children by engaging all of their senses. By pursuing every opportunity for hands-on learning, a young child will have actual experiences prior to learning the concepts or names of objects. Art especially messy art is one of the best opportunities to engage in the senses.

Sensory Roller Painting

Sensory roller painting can be done in different ways. For example, securing bubble wrap around rolling pins or other circular objects provides a perfect opportunity for administering paint to large pieces of paper. As watch the project unfold, you may just view children at play. The project is actually an integral part of learning. The project enhances the senses of touch, smell, and hearing.

Creativity and Imagination

Painting with various colors and textures enhances creative expression and develops the child’s imagination. Creative expression helps with cognitive development. Children want to explore and think about the project.


Young children are learning new words every day. Sensory activities help children learn a new vocabulary. The names of colors, shapes and textures are just some of the new words that can be incorporated into the project. .As children work with others around the sensory table or art area, discussing the project will enhance communication skills.

Fine Motor Skills

When using rolling pins or paint brushes, children are using fine motor skills as part of the application process. The continuous use of fine motor skills helps in the development muscles in the hands and wrists. As the muscles develop, an increase in hand and eye coordination will be fine-tuned. The simple sensory, art project also aids in the development of concentration which will help in later stages of learning.

Social and Emotional Sills

Under most circumstances, more than one child will want to learn how to do the sensory rolling painting project. The involvement of other children actually helps in the learning process. When working alongside peers, children develop social and emotional skills. For example, introducing new paint colors or other textures to the project will help in teaching children to wait their turn. As children engage and experiment with colors, socialization will increase throughout the work area.

Sense of Achievement

By finishing a sensory roller painting project, children gain a sense of achievement which boosts confidence levels. The excitement of completing a project will inspire a new sense of wonder to explore with further activities.

Of course, the project is a fun activity. When children have fun, the process becomes part of the learning experience.

If you would like more information on how sensory roller painting activities or other art related projects can help your young children learn, please contact the Montessori School in Newark for a tour. One of our highly trained instructors will be more than happy to answer all your questions about our kindergarten Newark program.