Testimonials | Press

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           We have been community members of Palm Valley Montessori School since November 2008. In that time our small child has grown into an intellectually responsible, and respectable 4 year old. Our son is reading and writing in both print and cursive. He is learning addition and subtraction, to the point where he can do simple problems in his head without using his fingers. He plays the piano, and is beginning to master sight reading musical notes; in fact so well that he was asked to play several songs at the Arrowhead Mall for Christmas Shoppers to enjoy. He has learned to tie his shoes, button buttons, and zip zippers. Most impressively, he has acquired an extreme hunger for the knowledge of the sciences, experiments, geography, art, history, sports, in addition to many other disciplines.
           We can truly continue on providing examples of the wonderful things he has been taught at Palm Valley Montessori School. To our family, friends, and co-horts, we can proudly say that our son is regarded as an extremely rare, gifted, and remarkable person. We are very fortunate for his achievements, but the truth of the matter is he is up to par with most of his friends and classmates his age at Intero Montessori School.
          Having friends and family with kids who are attending public schools in the Southwest Valley "district", we can honestly say this is unheard of in our public school settings - much less our local public preschools. One student in particular, who is in 8th grade, told us that she had never been taught to read or write in cursive as it is no longer a requirement. This should be both sad and concerning to most parents.
          We have analyzed various curriculums in the area, and have come to the undoubtable conclusion that a Montessori program is far superior to the others. We feel Palm Valley Montessori School has exceeded the curriculum of other local educational establishments.

— Alfredo Perret and Patricia Cantu

           We believe that a Montessori education is the best possible choice for our family. My son has been enrolled at Intero Montessori School since he was three years old. Currently, he is in the kindergarten program. The level and content of learning that he has engaged in throughout his time in the school is far above what most children his age are being exposed to. For example, my kindergarten son is reading at a fourth grade level. He is writing in complete sentences.
           In addition, he has started multiplication work. I do not know of any other school programs that allow a child of his age to progress through curriculum at that speed. He is able to learn and master concepts, as he is ready for the material. The small size of the school is also important to me. Due to the small school size, the staff really knows and cares for my children. They are not just another face in the crowd. Children deserve to have a real relationship with their teachers.

— Jaime Greer

           I have two children who attend Palm Valley Montessori School, a son in kindergarten and a daughter in preschool.
          My son who is in kindergarten, went to Palm Valley Montessori School for preschool. Because he was able to continue his education at the same school, it was a seamless transition from preschool to kindergarten. He received an amazing education as a preschooler and I was thrilled that he could continue to learn and thrive in the same environment.
          The academic achievements of the students at Intero Montessori School are exceptional. My 6-year-old can read proficiently, write in cursive, and is learning multiplication and fractions. He and my daughter are learning Spanish, geography, and history. They read classic literature and of all the children are encouraged to explore and discover more about whatever they are interested in. Their questions are answered, not hushed, and the school's focus on independent, self-motivated learning will carry them in good stead for the rest of their life. The Montessori Method of schooling encourages a life-long love of learning, which is lacking in so many schools today. I absolutely believe that the education my children receive at Intero Montessori School will help them grow up to be responsible adults who are caring, well-educated, and productive members of their community.
          I strongly believe that Palm Valley Montessori School is the best choice in the Southwest Valley for the education of my children.

— Elizabeth Girard

           My son Jadon is currently completing his Kindergarten year at the school. During the year and half Jadon has been attending Palm ValleyMontessori School we have observed a rapid growth in his academics. But most importantly we have watched as he has become a motivated student who has a love of learning and is excited about attending school each day.
          As a kindergartener, Jadon is working on skills and learning concepts that I introduced to students when I was teaching public school children in the first and second grades. Jadon is able to display such concepts as advanced phonograms, reading, cursive writing, multiplication, culture and geography. I have a child who can diagram and tell me all the countries in the continent of South America! The Montessori Philosophy of teaching that Jadon is receiving is by far superior to anything offered in the local public schools.
          I taught for 7 years in Arizona Public Schools, but left my position as a Reading Specialist in 2006 when Jadon was born. Last year I subbed in our local school district. I witnessed the chaos of the classrooms, the limited uninterrupted time that students are actually allowed to work and learn and it became very apparent to me that Jadon would not have been successful in this kind of environment. A huge difference in the Montessori Philosophy compared to a Public School is time. In the public school I saw students spending the majority of their day with small chunks of learning time. The day was constantly being interrupted by special areas, recesses and especially with students being pulled out of the classroom constantly for special assistance. In Jadon's day at Palm Valley Montessori School he has two large time blocks of uninterrupted learning time. This time is protected, sacred and the staff & children take this very seriously.
          The community at Palm Valley Montessori School is a group of involved families, motivated students, exceptional teachers and devoted directors. Daniel & Eva Foster are committed to making Palm Valley Montessori School the Montessori School of choice for families in the West Valley. I am amazed at their dedication to do whatever it takes to make Palm Valley Montessori School the best school for all students.

— Amy Khan

           A year and half ago my husband and I began the search for a Montessori program for our 3 year old daughter, Keira. When we found Palm Valley Montessori School, we were happy to see it was close and small enough that our child wouldn't be lost in the crowd and be able to receive the personalized education we were seeking. Unlike any preschool or daycare we had been in, the school was peaceful and quiet. Children mindfully concentrated on their projects and tasks. It was amazing.
          I appreciate the philosophy that no question or topic is skirted no matter what the subject especially the life process - everything living has a cycle of life - plants, animals, insects and even humans. The children are given a simple understandable explanation for their questions not only through abstract but tangible means as well - tending and observing gardens, animals and even humans. My family and friends all are amazed by Keira's temperament and abilities. I attribute much of this to be from Montessori. She is polite, kind, and well-spoken with an advanced vocabulary. She even chooses apples over french fries "because they are healthy." She makes decisions constantly during her Montessori day, what to work on (gently guided by her teachers), what her path is and to stick with a task even if it "hard" and it's beginning to help her make better choices outside school and hopefully for the rest of her life.
          We have discussions - true discussions - about Vincent Van Gogh, the solar system, nutrition, the seasons, King George and Martin Luther King, Jr. She can write in cursive and can write and count to 100. She can read and is beginning addition and subtraction. She speaks in Spanish and practices yoga. All these she has learned at Palm Valley Montessori School and she isn't even in Kindergarten yet.

— Cari Smith

Ms. Eva was a Montessori student herself and never forgot the beauty and respect of the educational method.  After training and working at Montessori Center School and Villa Montessori in Phoenix, Ms. Eva moved to the west valley for the sole purpose of opening Palm Valley Montessori School.  Ms. Eva’s four children keep her quite busy after school.  She loves reading and traveling to new places.

School Director and Elementary Teacher - Eva Foster

Mr. Daniel opened Palm Valley Montessori School with his wife, Ms. Eva, in 2008. After working in finance and real estate, he was happy to leave the corporate world behind and join the school staff full time in 2011, upon the birth of his third child.  Mr. Daniel’s primary focus is running the financial side of the school, but he is very passionate about the Montessori method of education.  He has traveled extensively around Arizona, the United States, and even Europe to meet with Montessori leaders and innovators and to learn from other schools.  Mr. Daniel has also helped lobby the Arizona legislature for Montessori-friendly education laws and he hasstarted or served organizations working cooperative Montessori

Administrator - Daniel Foster

Ms. Sara was born and raised in Arizona.  She joined Palm Valley Montessori Schoolin 2016 and has been a friendly, helpful face of the front office ever since. She married last school year.  Afterschool, Ms. Sara enjoys cooking with her husband and walking their dog at the park.

Administrative Assistant - Sara Madero

Ms. Elizabeth trained and taught Montessori in New Mexico before moving to Arizona and Palm Valley Montessori School in 2015.  Prior to teaching Montessori classes, she owned and instructed a martial arts studio.  Ms. Elizabeth has one grown daughter, two younger daughters and two granddaughters.  After school, she enjoys relaxing by the pool and watching her daughters’ activities.

Toddler Lead Teacher - Elizabeth Mitchell

Ms. Karen is a recent addition to Palm Valley Montessori School.  She joined our team in December 2017, upon the closure of her former school, Montessori of Surprise. She enjoys spending time outdoors with her husband cycling, exercising, or bird watching and visiting her son who attends Arizona State University in Tempe.

Toddler Assistant Teacher - Karen Fitzsimons

Ms. Christine worked as a lead teacher and a mentor to Montessori student teachers at Montessori Center School in Phoenix for twelve years before moving to Palm Valley Montessori School.  She and her elementary-age daughter have been a part of the school for the past nine years.  Outside of school, Ms. Christine enjoys spending time with her dogs and vacationing at the beach.

Primary Lead Teacher - Christine Klock

Ms. Belinda is a native of Arizona.  She joined Palm Valley Montessori School in August 2017.  After school, she enjoys hiking and spending time with her family.  She is also an aunt to two of our students, a Primary friend, and a Toddler friend.

Primary Assistant Teacher and Spanish Instructor - Belinda Galban

Ms. Celia visits both Primary classes and the Elementary class to give Spanish lessons.  She has been with Palm Valley Montessori School since August 2016.  Outside of school, Ms. Celia enjoys baking and decorating cakes.  She is now married, tying the knot November 2017.

Primary Assistant Teacher and Spanish Instructor - Celia Beltran

Ms. Mariela is a native of Costa Rica.  She joined the team at Palm Valley Montessori School in August 2018.  She trained and received her Montessori certification in her native country but is thrilled to gain Montessori teaching experience in an additional cultural environment.  Ms. Mariela is also a certified music instructor and she enjoys leading the children in songs, both English and in Spanish.  After school, Ms. Mariela loves to cook, bake and paint.

Elementary Assistant Teacher and Spanish Instructor - Mariela Rodriguez Brenes

Ms. Vicki drives all the way from the southeast valley, to teach our students three days a week.  She has been with Palm Valley Montessori since August 2015. Ms. Vicki is a long-time piano instructor and an elite educator of the Suzuki method of musical instruction.  She traveled several consecutive years to Japan to study the Suzuki method and to perfect her piano teaching skills.  Ms. Viki loves her many pet cats.  Ms. Viki is proud of her grown son (he is also a Suzuki music teacher) and her two grandchildren.

Piano Instructor - Vicki Seil

Mr. John is a long-time instructor for all ages.  Palm Valley Montessori School added Mr. John for guitar instruction in March of 2017.  Mr. John enjoys music concerts and spending time with his son.

Guitar Instructor - John Mellon

Coach Fred has been with Palm Valley Montessori School since the school first partnered with The Chess Emporium eight years ago.  He now teaches weekly chess lessons for the Elementary students.  Let him know if your student plans to compete at a chess tournament.  He loves to come out and support his students.

Kindergarten and Elementary Chess Coach - Fred Jarmuz

Ms. Sharon is a string instrument specialist, teaching beginning to advanced cello and violin instruction. Ms. Sharon is an experienced instructor who gives lessons to students ranging from 5 to 87 years old! For 10 years, she has traveled extensively nationwide with several orchestras playing road well as performing with the Phoenix & West Valley Symphony.

Violin & Cello Instructor - Sharon Nauman