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Managing Challenging Preschoolers: The Lifetime Montessori Difference

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Throughout America, thousands of preschoolers are being expelled each year. Not on our watch.

SAN DIEGO - eTradeWire -- Preschoolers are three times more likely than older children to be removed from school, Erin Einhorn of NBC News writes. As a result, they face immediate social, emotional and academic consequences that create bigger problems going forward. Managing challenging preschoolers is a must.

In 2016, American preschools expelled 17,000 students and suspended 50,000 more—in spite of new laws attempting to remedy this situation.

"We're missing the opportunity to really help out a child's family," Myra Jones-Taylor, chief policy officer at Zero To Three, says. "You can't do that if they're not in school anymore if you've washed your hands of them."

The Problem

Without the proper training, it can be difficult to manage and prevent behaviors like biting, shoving, tackling, kicking and ignoring safety precautions. At times, the lack of administrator support can create another reason for these high numbers.

Church and home preschools are illustrating an inability to manage these children. As a result, administrators simply suspend, transition or expel hard-to-manage students who have an inability to control their impulses.

However, the root causes of these behaviors can often be undiagnosed special needs like:

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• ADD or ADHD,
• Sight, speech or hearing issues, or
• Underdeveloped social and emotional skills.

The Lifetime Montessori School Difference

"When it comes to helping challenging children, traditional schools may not have the patience, people, or training that's needed to help," Kristin Edwards, M.Ed., Director of Lifetime Montessori School (LMS) in San Diego, says. "Thankfully, LMS has a full-time Resource & Inclusive Education Coordinator (R&IEC) whose job is to help."

"As the R&IE coordinator, I observe, document, troubleshoot and offer recommendations to both classroom teachers and parents," Heather Zolzer, M.Ed., says. "I work with a public school professional to build an assessment and evaluation for the child. Then, we begin modifying and implementing classroom protocols as a way to change behavior."

At Lifetime Montessori School, we ask ourselves:

• Just because some kids are a square peg forced to live in a round hole, can they fit within a Montessori structure?
• Can the Montessori Method of individualized learning, conceptual immersion, peer-to-peer teaching and learning to do for oneself at school and homework for the child?"
• If not us, who then? Is there anything better than what we provide?

"In reality, Lifetime Montessori School may be the best fit," Edwards says. "After all, we've got the training and the people to calm behavioral issues in a positive, cooperative way."

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Addressing Parental Concerns

Behavioral concerns also create parental worry and conflict. They may realize their child is being targeted for his or her personality—the child is aggressive or unsafe to others—and they're in a box they don't know how to get out of.

"We see the problems parents face," Edwards continues. "They'll call our school just after the term has started and poor behavior at another school has created a problem. Luckily, we're here to help the child. Plus, we're able to help parents get back to work to manage their lives and careers. This is the Lifetime Montessori School difference."


"Our Montessori preschool has chosen to go the extra mile to managing challenging preschoolers," Zolzer says. "We are teachers first and foremost. We teach a methodology that has worked for more than a century. And we believe an educational approach that is centered on respect for each child is a key to ensuring that each child has the ability to be responsible for himself and others. We welcome the challenge."
Lifetime Montessori School, a private Montessori preschool through Elementary school located in San Diego. To schedule a tour, visit www.lifetimemontessorischool.com/free-tours.

Robert Gavin

Source: Lifetime Montessori school
Filed Under: Education

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