Desert Garden Montessori
- Our School began in 1996 through the interest and efforts of the owner and director Ms. Shetal Walters, and a small group of parents.
- The School is committed to developing within each child a sense of responsibility and interdependence with their community and the world.
- Accordingly, Desert Garden's philosophy encourages children to appreciate and respect nature and the environment.
- Like the flowers in a garden, the children will learn and grow together in peaceful coexistence.
- Thus, the name "Desert Garden Montessori." The teacher is there to encourage, redirect, and supervise, but it is the child that learns through personal motivation in manipulating the work itself within the prepared environment.
|School Type||Montessori School|
|School Membership(s)School Assoc.||American Montessori Society (AMS)|
International Montessori Council (IMC)
|Grades Offered||Grades Prekindergarten-10|
|Learning Difference Programs||Yes|
|Learning Programs Supported||Mild Learning Differences|
|Summer School Offered||Yes|
|Total Students||276 students|
|Student Body Type||n/a|
|% Students of Color|
State avg.: 38%
|Students by Grade|
Academics and Faculty
|Total Classroom Teachers||27 teachers|
|Student : Teacher Ratio||10:1|
National avg.: 13:1
|Classroom Dress Code||Casual|
Finances and Admission
|Admission Deadline||None / Rolling|
|Admissions Director||Karen Hurlbert|
- Our School began in 1996 through the interest and efforts of the owner and director Ms. Shetal Walters, and a small group of parents. The School is committed to developing within each child a sense of responsibility and interdependence with their community and the world. Accordingly, Desert Garden's philosophy encourages children to appreciate and respect nature and the environment. Like the flowers in a garden, the children will learn and grow together in peaceful coexistence. Thus, the name "Desert Garden Montessori." The teacher is there to encourage, redirect, and supervise, but it is the child that learns through personal motivation in manipulating the work itself within the prepared environment.
- School Location Miles Grades Students
- Phoenix Grades: PK-K | 103 students
3221 E Chandler Blvd
Phoenix, AZ 85048
(480)759-3810 3 PK-K
- Mesa Grades: NS-8 | 94 students
1230 N Gilbert Rd
Mesa, AZ 85203
(480)890-1580 13 NS-8
- Saratoga Springs Grades: PK-6 | 130 students
459 Lake Avenue
Saratoga Springs, NY 12866
(518)583-0841 2160.7 PK-6
My children have attended this school for four years and it has been the best decision their father and I could have made for them. The community DGM has created for families and children is second to none. I can speak of experience with the toddler, primary and lower elementary programs, what I describe below is based off of my experiences with my children in these programs over the past four years. The staff are friendly, they remember you and your children. The programs and events they offer expose the children to various ways of learning. They have Olympic day every year, multicultural day where all the children get to learn about other countries and their traditions. The school has a group that participates in the children`s Spartan race every February, they train from November. I feel this builds camradarie and confidence. The organic lunch makes my life much easier knowing I do not have to pack a lunch and that my children are exposed to a variety of cuisines (with options for vegan, dairy-free, vegetarian, etc). Each classroom has a Spanish teacher, they learn songs in Spanish, they have concerts each spring and also in the winter for the older children.. The peace education offered incorporates the importance of mindfulness and helps children manage their emotions. The teachers are patient and hold children accountable. The classrooms flow very nicely, the children know the expectations. They do not have to ask to use the restroom, they put their works away the way they found them, they have classroom jobs that they take pride in (when you go on a tour you will likely see a greeter!) the amphitheater and outdoor play area is beautiful. I do not feel like I am in Arizona on the campus of this hidden gem of Ahwatukee. I feel as though this is a safe and nurturing environment for any child. The friendships they have developed have been strong and meaningful. My children continue to amaze me with what they come home and talk about learning in school. From academics to emotional intelligence, from arts to gardening, from STEAM to peaceful meal times (they clean their own dishes from a very young age!) this school has been a blessing. The late day program allows me to pick the children up by 6 when I need to. They allow for 7am drop off as well, this creates a lot of flexibility with our varying work schedules. The silent Journey solidified our choice, if you have an opportunity to attend it is a very profound experience.
- Posted by Parent - JFB
If you are someone who subscribes to the Montessori method of educating your children, this is the best program you will find in AZ. My wife and I searched virtually every Montessori programmed and loved this school so much that we are relocating to be closer to it. Also, for those who are concerned with the financial commitment, talk to them about how they can help with strategies to cover your tuition. Take a tour and you will see what I am talking about.
- Posted by Parent - Chris K