Montessori Preschool

App review by
Dana Anderson, Common Sense Media
Montessori Preschool App Poster Image
Play mini-games for coins in multifaceted classroom.

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A lot or a little?

The parents' guide to what's in this app.

Educational Value

Kids can practice early literacy and math skills. Some games include basic geometry vocabulary and shapes identification, art, practical life skills, and geography. Other topics touch on music, Chinese language learning, and coding. 

Ease of Play

Easy to play. On-screen hand shows kids what to do. Certain step-by-step icons may be too small for some kids to recognize.

Violence & Scariness
Sexy Stuff
Language
Consumerism

Kids earn coins to decorate their avatar and classroom. The free download includes a limited number of games and many ads for the subscription service. Sign-up for the subscription has a parent gate.

Drinking, Drugs & Smoking

What parents need to know

Parents need to know that Montessori Preschool is a subscription-based app for kids age 3 to 7 with activities inspired by the Montessori teaching method. The developers claim that the games were developed by certified Montessori teachers. The games cover math, language, practical life, and art in ways that align with Montessori's fundamentals: self-correction, autonomy, self-confidence, and adaptability. Kids can learn numbers and basic math, practice handwriting and spelling, learn geometric shapes, feed a fish and clean its tank, and more. By completing activities, kids earn coins and can use them to decorate their classroom or dress their avatar. Parents can create an account to receive information about their kids' progress and link other apps from the same developer, though kids can play even if parents don't sign up. Beyond a few free games and a seven-day trial period, subscriptions are $6.99/month or $59.99/year, and the developer states that new content is added on a regular basis. Read the developer's privacy policy for details on how your (or your kids') information is collected, used, and shared and any choices you may have in the matter, and note that privacy policies and terms of service frequently change.

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What's it about?

To play MONTESSORI PRESCHOOL, create a user account for your kid and then tap the Play icon. Sign up for the seven-day free trial. Tap on a learning category to find a game in math, literacy, shapes and colors, drawing, Chinese, code and logic, nursery rhymes, music, or practical life. Watch the on-screen hand display and listen to instructions when available to learn what to do in each activity. Swipe and tap to complete math, reading and writing, arts, or practical life exercises including letter tracing, counting, and watering plants. In writing exercises, choose from print, script, or lowercase or uppercase letters.

Is it any good?

This app will be a fun learning experience, whether or not your kid is familiar with Montessori-style education. Most mini-games on Montessori Preschool include elements that are clearly Montessori-inspired: playing the I Spy game, using cards to match beginning letter sounds, manipulating the golden beads in math, and working on practical life skills in the classroom. What's not typically Montessori is the point rewards that kids earn to purchase items on this app, but they were included to compensate for the lack of adult feedback that would be the norm in a real Montessori classroom. Also, since this app is meant to be used regularly by kids over a long period of time, the points and store enable kids to customize their preschool and make it their own. Since some of the step-by-step instruction icons in the practical life activities are so tiny, it may be hard for some kids to discern what they represent. Overall, however, this is a great collection of educational activities that will grow with your child.

Talk to your kids about ...

  • Families can talk about the categories of mini-games on Montessori Preschool. Does your kid seem to gravitate to one section of games more than others? Encourage them to try all of the categories to make the experience as close to a real-life Montessori classroom as an app can get.

  • Find ways to translate these on-screen mini-games into hands-on activities. For example, use finger paint to mix the same colors as in the color mixing game.

  • Talk about the points-for-play reward system on the app. Would this game be just as fun if you didn't get coins? Why or why not?

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