Montessori vs. Daycare: What's the difference mean for my child?

There are key differentiators between a Montessori preschool and a daycare center.  Here are a few valuable points of note:

  • Montessori preschools have trained and certified teachers.  Daycare centers have minimal teacher training, qualifications or educational certifications.
  • Montessori programs support a focus on child-led exploration that fosters the child's independence and self-discovery.  Daycare programs are adult-set group activities, where instruction happens in a group setting, at a group pace, even when children move more slowly or more quickly then others. 
  • Montessori schools use specifically designed educational materials.  Montessori materials are ingeniously designed to intrigue, challenge and promote education across a multitude of subjects.  Daycare centers use toys with little educational value.  
  • Montessori preschools have better student to teacher ratios.  Daycare centers are often over crowded and provide less individual attention for children.