25 Top Montessori Preschools in Los Angeles
Montessori preschools take a different approach to early childhood development, one which is focused on self-directed learning. Parents choose preschools that use the Montessori method for a variety of reasons, including the positive environment, self-directed curriculum, and individual attention each child receives. This laid-back and sunny approach to school is a great fit for the SoCal lifestyle, which must be why there are dozens of fabulous Montessori schools in Los Angeles. From the Valley to the South Bay, here are some of the most popular preschools in Los Angeles for Montessori learning.
Kids work together on a wide range of projects. Photo courtesy of Shir Hashirim Montessori School via Facebook
Montessori Preschools in Mid-City and Hollywood
1. Shir Hashirim Montessori School — Hollywood
Though Shir Hashirim's name is Hebrew, this Montessori preschool in East Hollywood is welcoming to all cultures and a place that celebrates the unique backgrounds of its students. Students at the school are introduced to a wide range of subjects and activities, including dance, drama, and yoga, with instruction given in French, Mandarin, and Spanish. The school has two campuses, one just south of Hollywood Boulevard and the other near Beverly and Vermont.
2. Sunset Montessori Preschool — Hollywood and Studio City
Founded in 2002, Sunset Montessori has two locations, one in Hollywood near Hollywood and Highland, and a newer location in Studio City. Morning lessons touch on subjects like math, art, language, history, science, and reading, while the afternoon is reserved for enrichment programs like drama, gymnastics, dance, Spanish, and French.
3. Beverlywood Montessori — Pico-Robertson
Beverlywood Montessori accepts students two years old and up. If your tot isn't potty trained yet, don't fret; for an extra cost, the school will provide potty training for you. There's rolling admission throughout the year if space is available, but the main enrollment period is from June to September. The classrooms have a fully immersive Spanish and Mandarin language environment led by native-speaking teachers, giving kids exposure to a second (or third!) language through lessons, music, and conversation.
4. The Jewish Montessori — Mid-City
This Montessori school on La Cienega Blvd. combines Jewish subject matter like the calendar cycle and Hebrew along with secular subject matter. Each child gets one-on-one lessons from the teachers, while being encouraged to self-direct their learning. One of the most important focuses at The Jewish Montessori is character development. This is achieved through emphasizing Hebrew middos like Ahavas Yisrael and Derech Eretz, in addition to Montessori values like the code of grace and courtesy.
5. LA First Montessori — Koreatown
Located in Koreatown, the LA First Montessori School offers large indoor and outdoor lessons throughout the year for kids ages two to six. Classes are taught in English, Korean, and Spanish with full-time and part-time schedules, plus an option for aftercare. With a maximum capacity of 15 students in the classroom, children get plenty of individual attention and are encouraged to think individually to develop confidence.
Exploring the world. Photo courtesy of the Baxter Montessori Parents Page via Facebook
Montessori Preschools on the Eastside
6. Baxter Montessori — Echo Park
Located in Echo Park and licensed since 1970, Baxter Montessori's program offers art, music, foreign language, and has a large yard for outdoor play and gymnastics. The school serves the largely working-class neighborhood with reasonable tuition rates.
7. Eagle Rock Montessori School — Eagle Rock
Eagle Rock Montessori School accepts children from two years of age through kindergarten. Classes start with pre-primary, which is for ages two and three and focuses on basic socialization and introduction to the Montessori method. After completing a 10-month school year, kids move into the primary classroom with a mixed age group that ranges from two years and nine months up to six years old. Children over the age of three are required to be toilet trained, but those in the pre-primary classrooms are not.
8. Children's World Montessori School — Eagle Rock
Children's World Montessori School is another option for parents of preschoolers in Eagle Rock. This school has some serious longevity, having been family-owned and operated since 1973. That knowledge extends to the educators as well, and many of the teachers have over 20 years of experience teaching the Montessori method. The school offers a wide range of extra-curricular activities including music, creative arts, foreign language, dance, swimming lessons, and yoga. The school also has a campus in the Huntington Beach area.
9. Bright Montessori — Atwater Village
Bright Montessori was established in 2003 by an educator with over 25 years of experience in Montessori schools. This preschool in Atwater Village takes an individualized approach to child development, designing a customized program for each student when they enroll. The school's stated mission is to "foster knowledge, imagination, and self and social awareness for bright beginnings in a culturally diverse world."
Counting and math are mixed with music and art. Photo courtesy of Montessori Children's Academie via Facebook
Montessori Preschools in the San Fernando Valley
10. Montessori Children's Academie — Burbank
Montessori Children's Academie has two locations in Burbank and accepts children between the ages of two and six. The school offers full, half-day, and part-time programs year-round as well as a potty training program. (Love all these potty training programs!) Academic programs and activities that are touched on at the school include Spanish, math, literacy, music, dance, gymnastics, computers, arts & crafts, and more.
11. Montessori House of Children — Valley Glen
Established in 1976, The Montessori House of Children emphasizes exploration, observation, and discovery. There are several programs available, including full-time and part-time, plus a summer program. The school also offers a potty training program for those little ones that aren't out of diapers yet. Classrooms are divided into mixed-age groups of two to three-year-olds and four to six-year-olds.
12. Woodlake Montessori Preschool — Woodland Hills
The mission of Woodlake Montessori Preschool in Woodland Hills is to provide an educational environment that is both challenging and enriching for the students. Classrooms are divided into three-year age groups—the preschool program is for kids ages two to five, and emphasizes sensorial awareness, math, language arts, and cultural arts like history and life sciences.
13. Burbank Montessori Academy — Burbank
Burbank Montessori Academy is the oldest Montessori school in Burbank. The school has a year-round program that offers flexible full-time and part-time schedules for kids ages two to nine. The curriculum at the school focuses on five principles that are emphasized in Montessori education: practical life, sensorial, math, language, and culture studies. Children are encouraged to work at their own pace, mastering individual skills and building towards more complex tasks. As a bonus, programs are listed on the school's website so you know what your child is doing each day.
14. Next Generation Montessori School — Glendale
Glendale's Next Generation Montessori School enrolls children between ages two and five and focuses on children's emotional, physical, and intellectual growth. The teachers take a flexible approach to teaching, tuning into each child's unique style of learning and development. The school has a low student-to-teacher ratio, so each child gets the individualized attention that defines the Montessori method.
Kids are encouraged to learn from and respect other cultures. Photo courtesy of Oneonta Montessori via Facebook
Montessori Preschools in the San Gabriel Valley
15. Oneonta Montessori — Alhambra
Oneonta Montessori in Alhambra is similar to other Montessori schools in that it features mixed-age classrooms. The preschool is divided up into four classes, which are split between ages two and four and ages three and a half to five and a half. The school's website provides detailed information about the activities and schedules for each class, with pictures regularly posted to the class pages. One benefit for parents seeking Montessori education through elementary school is that Oneonta goes to grade six, so your child can stay at the same school until middle school.
16. Bright Children Montessori Academy — Alhambra
Bright Children Montessori was founded by Ms. Lizzy when she struggled to find a preschool suitable for her own kids. The school practices an individualized curriculum for children between the ages of two and six with a full-time program and an option for extended hours from 7am to 6pm. Weekly tours are available year-round, and parents can book one on any weekday.
17. International Montessori Academy — Pasadena
International Montessori Academy is one of the few schools in Southern California with full recognition from the Association Montessori International (AMI). What this means is that the staff and classroom materials conform to the highest standards of Montessori principles and standards. International Montessori Academy accepts children between the ages of two and six years old, and its program includes language studies in Spanish and Mandarin, yoga, music, and more.
18. Bridge Montessori School — Sierra Madre
With a unique mission of raising global citizens, Bridge Montessori School in Sierra Madre helps children in Egypt gain access to education. A portion of each student's tuition goes towards sponsoring a child to attend school in Cairo's "Garbage Village." The school and its accredited teaching staff offers a year-round program for children two to six years old, emphasizing Montessori methodology. For even younger children, the school has a program for toddlers ages 18 months to 36 months.
Kids learn how to learn together with self-directed play. Photo courtesy of montessoribythesea.com
Montessori Preschools on the Westside
19. Montessori by the Sea — Venice
Montessori by the Sea offers very early childhood education for children from 15 months to 3.5 years old. The school keeps classroom sizes small at just 12 students per class. With the full-day program, children are given breakfast, lunch, and two snacks during the day, something that makes the school unique. Like other schools on this list, your child doesn't need to be potty trained because the educators use a positive reinforcement system to get kids out of diapers.
20. Santa Monica Montessori School — Santa Monica
Founded in 1960, the Santa Monica Montessori School has seen several generations of families through its program. The early childhood program emphasizes education using every sense, with children learning at their own pace and choosing their activities. Enrichment programs like Mandarin, music, physical education, art, and dance are offered at the school.
21. Culver City Montessori — Culver City
Culver City Montessori is unique because of its trilingual program, immersing students in Mandarin, Spanish, and English. In addition to its emphasis on language, the school also offers activities like gymnastics, yoga, keyboard lessons, soccer, tennis, dance, and more. The school accepts children between the ages of two and a half and six and requires all students to be potty trained. The school is usually full so be sure to add your child to the waitlist well in advance if this is your school of choice!
22. Montessori Academy — Culver City and West Adams
The Montessori Academy has two campuses offering year-round preschool, one in Culver City and the other in West Adams. The preschool program at both locations includes music education and art with large indoor activity areas and plenty of outdoor play space. Children do not need to be potty trained; the staff works with parents to potty train children at the school.
Kids explore and discover at their own pace. Photo courtesy of Palos Verde Montessori via Facebook
Montessori Preschools in the South Bay
23. Palos Verdes Montessori Academy — Palos Verdes
Palos Verdes Montessori Academy takes a unique twist on the Montessori method, combining it with Common Core State Standard and the STEAM program. The focus is still on giving children a place to explore and discover at their own pace, developing independent individuals. In addition to an Infant Curriculum and Toddler Curriculum, the school has four preschool programs: Pre-Primary for ages two to three, Primary for ages three to four, Advanced Primary for ages four to five, and Transitional Kindergarten/Kindergarten for ages five to six. Study areas include practical life, sensorial, language arts, mathematics, and culture.
24. Playhouse Preschool — Redondo Beach
The Playhouse Preschool in Redondo Beach has a Montessori-infused approach to education, dividing their programs by age. Two-year-olds have their own room which features a slower pace and a lower teacher-child ratio, fostering a positive and supportive atmosphere. Three-year-olds receive a combination of free play and structured play, while the transitional kindergarten class builds on those early learning experiences and applies them to advanced literacy, math, problem-solving, and motor skills.
25. Montessori School of Manhattan Beach — Manhattan Beach
Founded in 1968, Montessori School of Manhattan Beach is one of the oldest Montessori preschools in the region. The school's founder Judy Ernst earned an AMI certification, making this one of the few Montessori schools in Southern California with that designation. The school isn't just a nurturing place for the students; the average employment length of the school's staff is over a decade! The staff members are all credentialed in the Montessori method and their diplomas are displayed in each classroom. The school has an emphasis on art education, with monthly themes that emphasize various subjects like history, science, biology, and more. The curriculum also features weekly music and foreign language lessons plus art, cooking, and yoga lessons.