Choosing a preschool can affect your child’s introduction to learning, their development and their interaction with kids their own age. Because the technical definition of preschool in the United States is a nursery school that is at least partially state funded, you can also look at nursery schools for a similar education for your child or children, without the state funding. Because not every school offers the same curriculum, teaching style or activities, it is important that you choose the right one for your child. The following information can help you with researching and choosing the best preschool in your area.
Location is an important consideration but not a deal breaker if you can get a better school that is slightly further away. An online search or a local city or neighborhood map can tell you all of the schools in your immediate location. Your best option is to mark down each school you are considering, and then research them. Checking local school districts and policies on whether or not you can attend schools outside of your district is also important. Things to consider include travel time, potential morning traffic, whether you can easily make time to drive to and from the school on a daily basis, and the neighborhood.
St. Louis Preschools
|Word of Life Preschool (Timothy Campus)||314-781-8673||Lutheran||St Louis City|
|Word of Life Preschool (St Lucas Campus)||314-351-2628||Lutheran||St Louis City|
|Adventure Learning Center||636-394-0600||Private||West County|
|Agape Academy||314-725-5262||Abeka||Central County|
|A Growing Place Montessori School||314-863-9493||Monessori||Central County|
|Apple of Your Eye Learning Center||314-638-1568||Daycare – Preschool||South County|
|Apprende School||636-225-0006||Independent||West County|
|Busy B’s Preschool||314-773-2133||Preschool||South St. Louis|
|Casa Dia Montessori||314-892-4446||Montessori||South County|
|Chapel of the Cross||314-741-3737||Lutheran – Early Ed||North County|
|Chesterfield Day School||314-469-6622||Montessori||West County|
|Children of Promise||314-890-8757||Montessori||St. Louis County|
|Childtime Learning Center||636-282-2600||Daycare||Jefferson County|
|City Garden Montessori School||314-664-7646||Montessori||St. Louis City|
|Clayton Early Childhood Center||314-725-2325||Daycare – Preschool||Clayton|
|Community School||314-991-0005||Independent||St Louis County|
|Cornerstone Center For Early Learning||314-865-5244||St. Louis City|
|Creative Nursery & Preschool||314-221-0230||Nursery & Preschool||South St. Louis|
|Downtown Childrens Center||314-621-1131||Independent||Downtown|
|Elaine Rossi Academy||314-968-3576||Day Care||West County|
|Ethical Society Nursery School||314-991-1353||Nursery School||Central County|
|Faith Academy Montessori||314-961-1411||Monessori||Central County|
|First Congregational Preschool||314-721-2716||Preschool||South St. Louis|
|Forest Park Montessori||314-535-6873||Montessori||St. Louis City|
|Goddard School||314-918-1210||Montessori||Central County|
|Good Vibes School||314-727-VIBE||Independent||Central County|
|GSL Development Center||314-385-0611||Daycare thru K||North County|
|Hopemark Preschool||314-832-8115||Preschool||South St. Louis|
|Hope Montessori Academy||636-949-0709||Daycare / Preschool||St. Charles|
|International School House||314-874-0715||Independent||Central County|
|Kidsplay Childcare||636-379-9494||Daycare||St. Charles|
|Kingshighway Hills Preschool||314-352-Kids||Preschool||South City|
|Kirk Day School||314-434-4349||Daycare||West County|
|Learning Days Daycare||314-209-0065||Daycare||North County|
|Le Petite Academy||877-620-0199||Daycare thru K||Jefferson County|
|Little Sunshine Playhouse||314-995-7204||Preschool||University City|
|Mary Margaret Daycare||314-752-2965||Preschool||St Louis City|
|Montessori Learning Center||314-487-5448||Montessori||South County|
|Montessori Child Care Preschool||314-892-5446||Montessori||South County|
|Noah’s Ark Daycare||314-487-8507||Daycare thru Preschool||South County|
|Our Little Haven||314-533-2229||Pre School||St. Louis City|
|Primetime Childcare||314-892-1550||Daycare||South County|
|Sacred Heart Villa||314-771-2224||Catholic||The Hill|
|Sappington Child Care Center||314-843-4971||Private||South County|
|Shirley Green Preschool||314-569-0048||Jewish||Central County|
|Simon Says Early Childhood Center||314-842-3848||Early Childhood||South County|
|Southside Early Childhood Center||314-865-0322||Preschool||South St. Louis|
|St Louis Montessori||314-647-1400||Montessori||St Louis City|
|St Lucas United Church of Christ||314-843-1000||Church of Christ||South County|
|Stix Early Childhood Center||314-533-0874||STL Public Schools||St. Louis City|
|Tower Grove Christian||314-776-6473||Christian||Tower Grove|
|Union Preschool||314-647-0898||Methodist||Southwest St. Louis|
|University City Children’s Center||314-721-0939||Preschool||University City|
|UUM Preschool||314-863-7904||Preschool||St. Louis City|
|Villa Di Maria Montessori||314-822-2601||Montessori||Kirkwood|
|Village Lutheran Preschool||314-993-6743||Lutheran||St Louis County|
|Washington Montessori School||314-361-0432||Montessori||St Louis City|
|Webster Childcare Center||314-968-3189||Daycare||Webster Groves|
|The Westport School||314-878-5339||Daycare||Westport|
|Wilkinson Early Childhood Center||314-645-1202||St. Louis Public Schools||St. Louis City|
What does the term Montessori mean? If you have children, you may have heard the term “Montessori” when it comes to education. The term comes from the name Maria Montessori who created an educational approach based on her extensive research of children who had special needs. Although Montessori’s work began at the turn of the 20thcentury, it is embraced today by many educational institutions.
Tips On Selecting the Right St. Louis Preschool
Rating and Reviews: Checking ratings and reviews on the web can help you with choosing a preschool that offers the best care and quality facilities. Because you can easily see what other people think about the preschool with a quick search, you don’t have to worry about not knowing what the school is like. A quick search can usually bring up the schools website and possibly social media as well, where you can read about policies, school information and potentially reviews and comments. Because all of this information can help you with creating an informed decision, it is definitely worth your time to look up.
Recommendations: If you know other parents with children who are the same age or older than yours, asking for recommendations is an easy way to get a good idea of which schools are worth considering. Most parents have a good idea of why they chose the school their children are attending as well, which means you can get advice, as well as opinions on the school from the parent.
Activities: A list of daily activities and options is important if you want to see what your child is spending days doing. While some preschools offer this information on their website, you can usually drop by to request a brochure or a tour without any hassle. This allows you to get a first hand look at what kids are doing, as well as a list of daily activities, lessons and offerings. If you want a tour, you should call in advance to arrange it, which allows you to see the facilities, children at play and how teachers and assistants interact with the students.
Teaching Methods: If you want your children to learn something specific or in a specific way, then choosing the right preschool is important. Options range from standard State based curriculum to Montessori or free choice education rooms, where kids can choose their own activities and lessons. One consideration is that different learning methods allow different types of freedom and person development, while others focus on teaching skills such as memorization and basic curriculum, which is immediately useful in kindergarten. Most preschools concentrate on allowing children to develop individualism and life skills such as interacting with others and verbally talking out arguments. Because social interaction is an important part of development for preschool children, a school that allows plenty of time for free play or learning in a social environment is a good idea.
Affiliations: Affiliations matter if you want your child to attend a specific type of Preschool. For example, you can find a Catholic preschool or a Jewish one if you want an option with specific religion based curriculum or activities. At the preschool level, Christian schools involve some bible reading, and bible based toys, coloring books and information. You can also look for a preschool that is completely unaffiliated if you want.
Choosing the right preschool is important because it affects a great deal of your child’s social and learning development. Because there are multiple options available in most areas, you can do your research to choose a preschool that best fits you and your child. Because learning methods vary, you can also choose the school based on their curriculum and what school you intend to send them to next.
What is the Montessori Method?
The emphasis of the method itself is based on providing independence, engaging in freedom with certain limitations, and respecting the child’s physical, social, and psychological development. Although there are a number of practices that work under the Montessori Method, all of them have certain characteristics in common.
– Constructive model of education as opposed to direction oriented from the teacher
– Children ranging in age from 2 ½ up to 6 years old
– A three hour minimum block time for work
– Student choice in types of activities
– Can move around the classroom
– Use of specialized educational materials
All of these paths combine into the Montessori Method which is used around the world for the education of children. The activities are led by a teacher trained in this particular method.
History of Montessori Education
Maria Montessori began developing the concept for her method of teaching back in 1897. She attended the University of Rome and attended courses in pedagogy while reading on teaching theories for children that went back over two centuries. Over the next decade, Maria began developing theories about the proper teaching of children based on observation as well as experimentation.
By 1907, Maria had opened up her first classroom called the Children’s House located in a tenement building in Rome. Her work was noticed by Alice and Leopold Franchetti of Citta di Castello because it matched much of the work that they were doing. It was this collaboration that led to Maria and the Franchetti’s to publishing the system called, “Method Franchetti-Montessori”. The book was a popular one for years until the fascists that took over Italy had it removed from the shelves because Alice Franchetti was Jewish.
By 1911, the Montessori method spread to the US and it became very popular. However, a book critical of the Montessori Method was published by William Heard Kilpatrick in 1914 titled, “The Montessori System Examined” and the result was that the method Montessori developed virtually disappeared until 1960. At that time, a renewed interest in the system was such that it spread across the US with thousands of schools adopting the various methods that were taught.
Maria Montessori never stopped extending her work on developing the method that would reach from birth up to 24 years old using the established psychological models of development. Maria would write and lecture about the various models for learning that applied to different age groups of children, but she would not see most of the incorporated into school systems during her lifetime.
The Montessori Method is one that is based on the model for human development and teaching within its parameters. The belief is that children who are given the choice to act within that environment will develop educationally at the most optimal rate.