Our son started attending Children’s House earlier this year, when he was 15 months old. He quickly became acclimated to the classroom environment, which was an excellent fit for him – clean, relaxed, calm, lots of one-on-one time, all with a very nurturing approach. He looks forward to the days he goes, and is always full of excitement with a big smile on his face when the door opens and he sees his teachers. The teachers are caring, friendly, approachable, and we have complete faith that they always have our child’s best interests at heart. We have noticed a number of positive changes since he started, such as an increased ability to concentrate on tasks, and a greater love of reading. We are extremely pleased that we chose Children’s House for our son, and we believe the program has become an integral part of his early childhood development.
Crum Family (Infant Class)
Our daughter has been happy since day one at this lovely school, a very beautiful, friendly and happy atmosphere.
A school where everything is done with an attention to detail, and the happiness and comfort of the student is the most important.
The mix between play and Montessori work, seems to have a very good balance, our daughter of 20 months come home bubbly, chatting about her day every afternoon.
Watanabe Family (Infant Class)
As Italians, Montessori means a lot to us.
We believe that helping kids to reach their independence is the key to their happiness. And reaching happiness is the key to their self accomplishment.
Montessori is a Weltanshauung involving, among others care, attention, a wonderful environment, natural materials and knowledge.
We have been through several international preschools in Tokyo and not one fulfilled all these elements like Children’s House.
We always dreamed of giving our four-year- old daughter a Montessori education. Maria Montessori’s philosophy is paradoxically not so widespread in Italy and is regarded with suspicion by many, which goes beyond our understanding.
Giorgia Bianca Lucrezia knows phonics and numbers, she can write our family members’ names and in a few months her English improved in a terrific way.
She also has extraordinary art and music classes together with French and Japanese lessons at school.
At Children’s House you will find a lot of room for your kids, not just a lot of kids in a room.
You will find trained teachers, not people choosing makeshift solutions.
You will find caring people, not just employees.
You will find lovely families, not parents involvement that ends up being your second job.
You will find smart children. Period
Querin Family (Primary Class)
We arrived in Tokyo 2 years ago with our 11 and 2 year old sons. The 11 year old’s school decision was easy, but finding the right pre-school for our nearly 3 year old was proving very challenging, and we had nothing booked after 6 months of searching. Many of the places we looked at were no more than large-scale babysitting operations, others finished too early in the day to make any sense for our lifestyle, and nothing had really grabbed us 100% – that is, until a chance comment to a friend resulted in us finding out about the opening of Children’s House Montessori, just 15 minutes walk from our home.
Since the first day we stepped foot inside the school, we have been so grateful that fate brought us there. The school is based in a very quiet backstreet of Aoyama, in a calm and welcoming family home with a small garden and ancient cherry tree. There is a play-park around the corner, so there is never any issue regarding the children having outdoor time every day. As a relatively young school, there is still a sense of every family being important, and all the staff are genuinely welcoming. We had no tears from our 3 year old when he started his first term there, despite the fact that he had spent all his days with me up until that point. His teacher, Maki-san (also the school Founder and Director), is a truly gifted teacher. She has an ease and authority with the children under her care that is incredible to observe, and the ability to make them feel as though they are in her home, playing with her and her “toys” (the educational Montessori toys). Aren wanted to go to “Maki-san’s House” every day, so what was originally a 3-day week soon became full-time. He started with a handful of other children in the upstairs classroom (they remain there until they are toilet-trained, or around 3 years old), but when the toilet milestone was reached, he moved downstairs into the large classroom, currently headed up by Miho-san, who also weaves her magic with the children. Both Maki and Miho have long years of experience teaching in other Montessori schools, so their professionalism is impressive.
Aren’s small cohort of 4 year olds are very close knit, and although he is the youngest amongst them, the mixing of ages, which is typical of the Montessori Method, means that he is effectively mentored by his peers, who are that little bit ahead of him. This year, his second at the school, we have been blown away by the huge leaps he has made in all aspects of his life – he is self confident, always eager to put on his own clothes, or help chop up food for dinner. He has mastered the English alphabet, is writing his name and words like “Dad”. He is also now learning Japanese sounds and script. He knows his numbers, he can sing songs to us, can draw incredibly detailed pictures, and has started to read! Since Montessori encourages children to move ahead at their own pace, he is obviously not being held back in any way, and we are so thrilled to see what he has learned every day.
Children are expected to arrive around 8.30, and the official day ends at 3pm, which means that busy mums can have a reasonable number of hours to undertake various activities or work. There is the opportunity to let your child stay for the wonderful “after-school clubs”, such as Music, Japanese or English language, Art, French, etc. for a competitive fee, or students can continue their learning in after-school care. We have taken full advantage of these opportunities, as we want both our sons to have lots of opportunities to chose from in the future, and we are happy to say that Aren is full of enthusiasm for each and every one of them.
Thank you to Maki, May, Miho and Sanako for all you do. Keep up the brilliant work!
Cherry Family (Primary Class)
Though my stay in Tokyo coincided with autumn break, Children’s House offered to give me a tour of the school’s lovely facilities. The Children’s House environment has an elegant simplicity that emphasizes the beauty of the Montessori materials, underscoring the potential they have to engage children’s intellectual and creative capabilities. The teachers’ bilingualism in English and Japanese allows for native Japanese-speaking children and native English-speaking children to benefit from a Montessori environment that wholly values both the culture in which the school and its students reside and the cultures from which many of the international students come. As a member of the Board of Directors of St. Paul’s Episcopal Montessori School in San Antonio, Texas, I admire Children’s House’s ability to create a space in which children from 1 to 6 years old grow up learning how to engross themselves in their work, while laying a foundation for understanding differences in humanity.
Philis M. Barragán Goetz (Montessori Visitor)