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Montessori schools in British Columbia

Find the top Montessori schools and programs in BC.




On this page, we cover private schools in British Columbia (BC) that offer Montessori programs and support. This includes schools in Vancouver and Victoria

For a more comprehensive guide to Montessori education, including a discussion of the Montessori school curriculum, method, and philosophy, start with our introductory guide.

Table of contents


  1. List of Montessori schools in British Columbia

  2. Choosing a school

  3. Tuition at British Columbia Montessori school

  4. Compare Montessori schools

  5. A primer on Montessori education
  6. Further resources


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Montessori schools





There are lots of private Montessori schools in British Columbia. These schools vary in terms of their classroom practices, curricular approaches, program offerings, and special needs support. The schools listed below reflect this diversity. They can be filtered for a wide range of features.


 
  • Westside Montessori Academy
  • Roots and Wings Montessori School
  • The Maria Montessori School Ltd.
  • Monkey See Monkey Do Montessori

 
School NameTypeApproachCost

Westside Montessori Academy (est. 2008)

  • Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Preschool to 7 (Coed)
  • Day school (120 students)
Westside Montessori Academy, located at the Italian Cultural Centre in Vancouver offers a true Montessori education to children aged 2.5 to Grade 7. [View profile]
  • Montessori
$5,050 to $10,750

Roots and Wings Montessori School (est. 1985)

  • Langley, British Columbia
  • Nursery/Toddler to 9 (Coed)
  • Day school (120 students)
We aim to create a community to enable children to honour and respect their innate goodness, their joy in learning and their responsibility as caring global citizens and stewards of the earth. [View profile]
  • Montessori
$4,830 to $12,000

The Maria Montessori School Ltd. (est. 1991)

  • Surrey, British Columbia
  • Preschool to K (Coed)
  • Day school (20 students)
Authentic Montessori Preschool. Students completing our 3 year program at The Maria Montessori School test extremely well. Montessori balances academics, exploration and skills guided by the child's natural interests. [View profile]
  • Montessori
Orthodox$3,500 to $3,900

Monkey See Monkey Do Montessori (est. 2007)

  • Vancouver, British Columbia
  • Preschool to SK (Coed)
  • Day school (40 students)
We have offered high quality programs for children ages 2.5-6 since 2007 in Vancouver, B.C. Our students graduate with a solid academic foundation, good problem solving skills, pro-social behaviour and a love of school. [View profile]
  • Montessori
$4,500 to $7,500





For general advice on how to choose and evaluate private schools, check out our choosing a school guide. For advice on selecting Montessori schools (including preschools), see our Montessori choosing guide. You can also read our preschool choosing guide.

Private school expos

Private school expos are a great starting point for finding a school, at any level. We have annual private school expos in Toronto, Montreal, Vancouver, Ottawa, Calgary, and Halton-peel. These expos allow you to speak with lots of private schools in Canada, many of which are Montessori schools, all in one place. Find a Montessori school near you.

Parent discussion forum

Another great resource in your school search is the Our Kids parent discussion forum. The forum is an ideal place to discuss options and debate topics related to Montessori schools and preschools. Our community of parents, educational experts, school officials, and alumni can help answer your questions and stimulate your thinking.

Open house events

Attending open houses is a great way to learn more about schools. For general advice on open house visits, check out our guide on school visits.

School nameDateLocation
Westside Montessori AcademyNovember 30, 2017 7:00 pmWestside Montessori Academy
3075 Slocan Street Vancouver British Columbia V5M 3E4
Westside Montessori AcademyJanuary 27, 2018 10:30 amWestside Montessori Academy
3075 Slocan Street Vancouver British Columbia V5M 3E4




The cost of Montessori schools in British Columbia tends to be lower than the cost of other private schools in British Columbia. In fact, Montessori schools are usually on the lower side of private school tuition in general.

Private school tuition can range from $5,000 to over $30,000 per year for day students. There are no public Montessori schools in British Columbia, though some public schools use certain Montessori principles and materials.

Many schools offer needs-based financial aid, such as bursaries or tuition relief. Other schools, though not as many, offer scholarships, which are given based on merit—for instance, in academics or athletics. You can learn more about need- and merit-based financial aid in our dedicated guide. You can also read our guide to preschool costs.

Below, you’ll find the range of costs for Montessori private schools in British Columbia:

 
Tuition (day school)Students receiving financial aidGrade eligibility for financial aidAvg. aid package size (annual)




 
 
Primary curriculum
Secondary curriculum
Curriculum pace
Academic culture
Average class size
Language immersion
Special needs support
Tech integration
Westside Montessori AcademyMontessoriStudent-pacedSupportiveLimitedLight integration
Roots and Wings Montessori SchoolMontessoriStudent-pacedSupportive8 to 20High
The Maria Montessori School Ltd.MontessoriStudent-pacedSupportive18 to 20Limited
Monkey See Monkey Do MontessoriMontessoriStudent-pacedSupportive20LimitedLight integration





 Legend:

 ADHD

Learning disorders:
 Dyslexia
 Auditory processing disorder
 Dyscalculia
 Dysgraphia
 Language processing disorder
 Non-verbal learning disorders
 Visual motor deficit
Development disorders:
 Autism
 Asperger's

Behavioural and emotional:
 Troubled teens
 Depression
 Suicidal
 Substance abuse
 Oppositional defiant disorder
Physical:
 Dyspraxia
 Blindness
 Deafness
 Cystic fibrosis
 Multiple physical
 








Montessori schools, in British Columbia and other provinces, have unique classroom practices. Some of the main ones are the following (for more comprehensive coverage, see our main Montessori school guide):

Montessori classroom practices

Self-directed work: Kid do lots of independent work. While the learning environment provides some structure, kids often choose their own tasks and learning materials. With some guidance from the teacher, they also determine the pace of their studies. This allows kids to do work they find stimulating and that they’re likely to complete. It can also lead to a love of learning, sometimes a long-lasting one.

Concrete learning: The main focus is on concrete learning, rather than abstract learning. Especially at the primary and elementary level, Montessori students work with lots of different concrete materials to learn important skills and concepts. Concrete learning engages many of the senses. And research has shown that it benefits many kids.

No tests or grades: Similar to Waldorf and Reggio Emilia schools, Montessori schools almost never test students or give them assignments. Moreover, student work isn’t graded, except in high school (and sometimes middle school). Instead, student progress is informally assessed through observation and developmental rubrics. The belief is that kids should be intrinsically motivated—by doing meaningful work they enjoy and find fulfilling—rather externally motivated (by grades, report cards, and the like).

Individualized curriculum: Montessori schools focus heavily on academics, even sometimes at the primary school level (3-6). Kids must master the basics in math, science, the language arts, and other subjects. They can then move on to more advanced work.

The curricular focus and pace, though, will differ between children. Each child will move at a different pace and study subjects in different ways, depending on their specific learning needs and interests. Each student will also have their own individualized learning plan, one that’s arrived at by both the student and teacher.

Montessori curricular and teaching approach

In Montessori schools in BC and other provinces, subjects are almost never taught in isolation. Typically, several subjects are taught together, as part of an “integrated curriculum.”

For instance, biology or chemistry aren’t taught as single subjects, except possibly in high school (and maybe middle school). Rather, they’ll be taught as part of an integrated unit. To this end, a teacher might deliver a “great lesson” on the beginning of life, where kids learn about biology, chemistry, history, religion, and other subjects.

An integrated curriculum can be very rewarding for students. It encourages them to make connections between ideas and concepts from a variety of disciplines. It also can lead to positive learning outcomes, such as a broadening of knowledge and a wider range of interests.

Unlike traditional schools, though, Montessori schools don’t deliver this curriculum through direct instruction. Teachers rarely, if ever, give long lectures or lessons. When lessons are given, they tend to be shorter and more interactive and engaging than lectures given in traditional schools.

Instead of lecturing, teachers tend to work with individuals or small groups of students. Their main role is to be a facilitator: they provide the necessary support and guidance for students to complete their work.

Sometimes, though, teachers will just sit back and observe kids work. Often, this will be group work, where small groups of kids come together (of their own accord) to work on different tasks and projects. The belief is that classmates often do a better job of teaching than the head teacher. In particular, older kids can excel at teaching and mentoring their younger peers, and modelling appropriate behaviour to them. The teacher, in these situations, will intervene or provide guidance only when absolutely necessary.

To learn more about the Montessori method, see our curriculum and teaching guides. To learn about some of the research behind this approach, see our benefits guide


Montessori schools in British Columbia

Maria Montessori developed her system of education in the early 1900's. Her philosophy calls for free activity within a prepared environment. The educational environment is tailored to basic human personality and to the specific characteristics of children of different ages.

Your son or daughter's teachers do not merely tell students what he or she must know, but self-directed learning is the core aspect of Montessori education. The teacher acts more like a mentor or observer who directs when needed and assists when called upon. Montessori education emphasizes independence, freedom, and respect for a child's natural psychological development.

There are great Montessori schools in British Columbia, such as in Vancouver. These schools are much less concerned with number or letter evaluations than other types of schools are. Instead, they focus on the holistic development of your child.

Modern Montessori teacher training centers and schools are very well developed in British Columbia. The Canadian Council of Montessori Administrators (CCMA) helps schools implement the most innovative and effective education strategies or tools.

The Montessori method of education serves the needs of children of all levels of mental and physical ability, as they learn together in a group-oriented environment. The Montessori practice is dynamic because the meeting of needs is continual and tailored for each student.

At a Montessori Casa preschool, your child will be part of practical living activities (i.e. zipping, sweeping, dusting, buttoning, brushing) in a classroom that is intended exclusively for preschool children. In addition, Montessori students are often in classes with different age groups. This way younger children learn from older children and older children learn how to be mentors.