Preparing for a New School Year

Jake Peters

03 September 2009

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Preparing for a New School Year

Preparing for a New School Year

Varsha Patel, Founder and Head of Schools

Varsha Patel,
Founder & Head of Schools

With the new school year peeking around the corner, parents throughout the DFW Metroplex are faced with the important task of finding the best possible school and care for their children for the upcoming year. Castle Montessori Schools in Carrollton, Flower Mound and McKinney offer a superb education and the most beautiful, modern facilities available in North Texas.

As a mother, Castle Montessori founder and Head of School, Varsha Patel, is well-aware of the anxiety that children and their parents can face when beginning at a new school. Because of that understanding, she is fully committed to making the transition period into her schools an enjoyable and stress-free time. She does this by offering newly enrolled families a unique, two-week transition period whereby parents can bring their child into the school for as little as a few minutes or as long as several hours so that both parent and child can gradually adjust to the new school environment.

“It’s highly important to me that there is a deep sense of happiness and security here. I want the child to be familiar with their surroundings, be acquainted with the people who care for them and to look forward to coming to school. If they have these feelings before their true “first day of school” I believe and have personally seen that it will set the foundation for an exceptional school experience thereafter,” Patel said. Each school campus was built featuring state-of-the-art computer labs, indoor gymnasiums, outdoor playgrounds with upgraded play structures, music rooms with a baby grand piano and closed-circuit monitoring security systems. “Dr. Maria Montessori dedicated her life’s work to helping children discover and nurture their potential, and through my schools I hope children gain a sense of community, a culture of respect, choice, and independence. I love the fact that in each of my schools we have created a place where children feel successful, at peace, and are actively engaged in purposeful and focused learning,” Patel added.

Patel and her team of dedicated teachers and administrators have set the standard in the area when it comes to providing a top-notch education for young children. Patel says the lifework of the famous Italian educator Dr. Maria Montessori is the basis of every aspect of her program. “We firmly believe in Dr. Montessori’s methods and have seen firsthand how important it is to teach the child what he or she is ready to learn in a timeframe when he or she is ready to learn it,” Patel said. Patel has been successful in staffing the schools with experienced lead teachers (Directresses) certified by the American Montessori Society (AMS), Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) and Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE). She requires each staff member to complete extensive educational training and each school holds membership in the prestigious American Montessori Society (AMS), ensuring their on-going commitment to Montessori methods and philosophy. Upon entering a

According to Patel, in the Castle Montessori School curriculum, concepts and skills are learned and reinforced through the use of materials and recurring themes.

“Teachers at each level in the school review and integrate the preceding level’s lessons when presenting new material, and in that way, children are challenged and encouraged to move at their own pace,” Patel said. “This is certainly different from what you find in more conventional schools where the entire classroom of students do the same work at the same time, where specific skills and concepts are taught in isolation, and limited to a specific grade level,” Patel added. Castle Montessori classroom or “children’s house” as Dr. Montessori referred to the educational spaces, it is evident the entire environment is based on the needs and interests of children. All Carrollton: 972-492-5555 Flower Mound: 972-539-3333 McKinney: 972-529-1222 See our ad on page furniture and materials are scaled for the children and a distinct sense of order and beauty is prevalent in each classroom. Classrooms contain areas of language arts, art, math, geometry, cultural, geography, science, and practical life materials designed to foster each stage of learning. Castle Montessori schools offer yearround programs for children ages 18 months to nine years, before and after-school care, nature study, music programs, computer programs, two foreign language programs as well as optional dance, martial arts, foreign language and drama programs. “Because I’ve lived through the experience of looking for good schools, I want parents to know I am committed to providing a safe, nurturing, educational environment for their children, and that I am personally there in my schools. We are not a corporate daycare where each child is simply an account number,” Patel said. “We personally know the children and parents, and care about their lives,” she added. “I love visiting with families and sharing my dream of what is possible in each school” Patel said.

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