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Kids R Kids Philosophy Compared to the Montessori Method

Our curriculum is founded upon the educational theories of Jean Piaget, Lev Vygotsky, and Sara Smilansky. These three superior educational theorists have helped to guide our decisions for age appropriate learning experiences for children. Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academy of Charlotte is designed for children to learn through peer and teacher interaction in a creative and safe environment based on the theories of Vygotsky regarding the development of the young mind. Our curriculum scaffolds teaching strategies for every classroom age grouping using Piaget’s framework of proposed stages in a child’s developing ability to learn. We also support Smilansky’s teachings of learning through play. The Kids ‘R’ Kids curriculum includes an array of playtime in the classroom and outside on the playground. This strategy gives children the welcomed freedom to create and explore the world around them.

According to each of these child development theorists, children learn best when they take an active part in constructing meaning from the world around them.  Another proponent of educational constructivism is the Montessori method of teaching. Even though it has a similar philosophy to Vygotsky, Piaget, and Smilansky’s methods, the Montessori approach to education has some very distinct differences. Listed below is a chart comparing the Kids ‘R’ Kids’ teaching philosophy and the Montessori teaching method for young children.

Kids ‘R’ Kids Learning Academies

Motto: Hug First, then Teach

Nurturing prepared environment with center-based activities

Balance of teacher-directed and child-initiated activities during a typical day following a predictable schedule

Accredited curriculum by AdvancED based on developmental milestones of motor and verbal skills achievement by age

Standards-based curriculum linked to national and state Pre-K Requirement standards

Children grouped by age in six months increments

Each day has specific teaching plans and scheduled routines

Large and small group planned activities to engage children

Staff of teachers exceed annual state training requirements

Achievement assessment by specific learning goal with progress tracking in addition to anecdotal and portfolio evidence

Use of assessment tools for first grade readiness


Motto: Respect of the Child

Nurturing prepared environment similar to home-living set up

Predominantly child directed choices of activities available referred to as “child’s work” without specific scheduled routines

Holistic curriculum dealing with all aspects of young child’s acquisition of knowledge

Skill acquisition is based on sensitive periods of learning by individual child

Mixed age groups

Each day is driven by self interest of child with minimal interruptions

Children urged to follow own interest and move at own pace

AMI, AMS Certification preferred

Assessment by anecdotal observations and portfolio evidence

Children need to make transition into more traditional setting when leaving program