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The Maria Montessori School

8597 156 Street, Surrey, British Columbia, V3S3R8

Approach :
Grades (Gender):
Preschool to K (Coed)
$3,500 to 3,900/year
Main Language:
Avg. Class Size:
18 to 20
Day: 20 (Gr. PS - K)

School Address
8597 156 Street, Surrey, British Columbia, V3S3R8

About this school:


The beginning is crucial. Your child's first education experience should enable love of learning, the joy of exploration and the curiosity to discover. In our quickly changing world the Montessori Method is still the ideal as it excels in developing your child's full potential. Since 1991 The Maria Montessori School has brought all of this and the wonder of the world to young children through the brilliantly modern, relevant and highly effective method developed by Dr. Maria Montessori more than 100 years ago.

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Our Take: The Maria Montessori School

our take

For the better part of three decades The Maria Montessori School has provided an important piece within the academic mosaic of Surrey: a fully accredited Montessori program that remains faithful to Maria Montessori’s ideal as developed more than a century ago. One of the hallmarks, in ample evidence here, is a trust in the innate creativity that children bring to the classroom, as well as their natural affinity for repetition, observation, and interaction. Likewise, there is a trust in the value of mentorship among the students, with the older ones sharing with the younger, something that is as charming as it is useful in developing social skills and interpersonal communication. The learning spaces are well organized, well-lit with natural light, and include interfaces with the world outside. Those things, rightly, are no doubt primary draws for the families that enroll here, as is a careful, considered pace within the delivery of the curriculum. Headmistress Rosa van Meel is a well-spoken advocate of the method, and she works to ensure that the program meets all the standards that parents expect of a sound, informed Montessori program. Her interest in imparting her enthusiasm and experience to new instructors gives further strength to the work of the school.

Principal's Message


Mrs. Rosa van Meel, Headmistress

Welcome to The Maria Montessori School. Since 1991 our school has introduced preschool and kindergarten children to the wonders of learning through the Montessori Method. It surprises many adults that even extremely young children have a very strong and innate desire to understand the world around them. They want to read, they want to emulate adults, they want to explore, and they want to know. Dr. Maria Montessori's greatest contribution to Early Childhood Education, and the foundation of her Method was the recognition that when given access to the right developmentally appropriate materials all children, even those as young as three can quickly acquire the foundation skills of reading, writing and basic mathematics. Guided by his or her own interests and talent, the progress of a young child can be quite astonishing. Hers was a monumental discovery and our school continues within the educational philosophy and tradition of Dr.Maria Montessori. And - finally - our students love to come to school.


Montessori ApproachOrthodox

Orthodox Montessori     Moderate Orthodox Montessori    Moderately Non-Orthodox Montessori     Non-Orthodox Montessori

Age groupings 3 to 6
Uninterrupted work periods 2.5 hours
Tests and assignments Never
Graded work Never
Arts and crafts 5%
Whole-class lectures Orthodox
  • Orthodox

    Whole-class lectures should never be given. Students learn best through small group lessons, interaction, and independent work.

  • Moderately orthodox

    Whole-class lectures should only be given occasionally (e.g., at the beginning of a term or unit). Students usually learn best through small group lessons, interaction, and independent work.

  • Moderately non-orthodox

    Whole-class lectures should be given semi-regularly (e.g., at the beginning of a lesson or a week). While students often learn best through group and independent work, it's sometimes important for teachers to set the stage for and contextualize learning.

  • Non-orthodox

    Whole-class lectures should be given often (e.g., every day). While group and independent learning is important, teachers need to provide lectures on a regular basis to provide the foundation for learning.

What TMMS says: The Maria Montessori uses the standard "Casa" type of teaching. Students choose their activity, work individually and sometimes in small groups. Older children and younger children will work together or sometimes just watch and observe but lectures are not part of the process.

Special education Orthodox
  • Orthodox

    External special education support isn't necessary. Core teachers can deal with all special education needs, by offering the relevant support for each student.

  • Moderately orthodox

    External special education support is only rarely necessary. For instance, a psychologist might be brought in to help out a student with a severe developmental disorder.

  • Moderately non-orthodox

    External special education support is quite important. Outside specialists are needed for a fairly wide range of special needs, such as developmental and learning disabilities.

  • Non-orthodox

    External special education support is very important. Outside specialists are regularly brought in to support students with many different types of special needs, including developmental and learning disabilities, language and speech issues, behavioural issues, and advanced learning abilities.

What TMMS says: Students with special needs are integrated into the standard class. Some modification is made to accommodate their specific needs, usually in the form of additional time on specific areas where they may be in need of assistance.

Specialist classes Moderately orthodox
  • Orthodox

    We don't have any specialist teachers or classes. Core teachers are well-equipped to teach all subjects.

  • Moderately orthodox

    We only use specialist teachers and classes in rare cases (for instance, to teach a second language). Core teachers are well-equipped to teach almost all subjects.

  • Moderately non-orthodox

    We have a fairly wide range of specialist teachers and classes (for instance, in languages, music, and art). Core teachers are well-equipped to teach most subjects.

  • Non-orthodox

    We have many specialist teachers and classes (for instance, in languages, music, art, gym, science, and math). It's important that students receive specialized instruction in many subjects.

What TMMS says: There are special guest teachers invited to the school and they will cover areas of interest for the kids, for example science or natural history. Overall specialist teachers are not a necessary feature of the preschool level because young children are fully absorbed in pursuit of the basic skills of sensorial exploration, reading, writing, math, and spoken language.

Modern-day technology Orthodox
  • Orthodox

    Modern-day technology is never used in the classroom. This can interfere with students' social and emotional development and can be a distraction.

  • Moderately orthodox

    Modern-day technology is very rarely used in class, since it can be a distraction and interfere with development. Students at the upper levels, though, might be permitted to use a computer or a tablet to do research for a specific project.

  • Moderately non-orthodox

    Modern-day technology is used in moderation since it can be a distraction. For instance, computers and other digital media might be used for research, writing, and multimedia projects.

  • Non-orthodox

    Modern technology is used fairly regularly. For instance, computers and other digital media might be used for research, writing, multimedia projects, and to learn keyboarding skills. Teachers may sometimes also use digital media, such as interactive whiteboards, to teach lessons or introduce topics.

What TMMS says: It is best for children to be gaining competence in the basic skills of reading, writing, math and spoken language before they have any significant exposure to screens and other new technologies. The Montessori method does not use any electronic devices - manipulatives allow sensorial exploration, transition and growth, and they are a most effective starting point for very young children exploring the world around them.

Overall approach : Whick option best describes your overall curricular approach?
  • Orthodox
    36% of schools

    Schools that adhere strictly to the original Montessori program. They follow Montessori principles to the letter.

  • Moderately Orthodox
    42% of schools

    Schools that adhere to the original Montessori program and principles. On occasion, though, they supplement it with modern curricular approaches or materials.

  • Moderately Non-Orthodox
    13% of schools

    Schools that are faithful to the original Montessori program and principles, but sometimes supplement it with modern curricular approaches or materials.

  • Non-orthodox
    9% of schools

    Schools that are faithful to the original Montessori program and principles, but often supplement it with modern curricular approaches or materials.

Teaching Assistants: This school uses teaching assistants.

What TMMS says: There are two teachers in a class - a guide and assistant - both work with the children individually or in small groups. The Maria Montessori School also has, several times a year, practicum students from the AMI Training Center of BC.

Preschool/K Curriculum Montessori

  • Play-based
  • Montessori
  • Waldorf
  • Reggio Emilia
  • Academic

Montessori programs aimed at preschool and Kindergarten- aged children allow young learners to choose which “tasks” or activities interest them. These tasks centre around special Montessori puzzles -- the essential features of these puzzles being they contain a “right answer” and allow for self-correction. A strong emphasis is therefore placed on learning being concrete and rooted in practical experience, along with children developing a sense of self-sufficiency and confidence. Specially trained teachers act as guides, introducing children to progressively more difficult materials when appropriate. A Montessori classroom is typically very calm and orderly, with children working alone or, sometimes, in small groups.

If you want to learn more about Montessori education, check out our comprehensive guide. You can also check out our guide to Montessori preschools, elementary schools, middle schools, and high schools.

If you want to learn more about preschool education, check out our comprehensive guide. You can also read our in-depth answers to important preschool questions: What is preschool? What are the main preschool programs? What are the main pros and cons of preschool? What do children learn in preschool? How much does preschool cost?  What makes for a great preschool?

What TMMS says: We use the Montessori method, the Traditional Casa which emphasizes exploration and development of practical and academic skill. Academically, our school has very strong Science, Geography, Math and Language outcomes. The three year program moves each child at their own pace using manipulative materials and always leading towards the acquisition of abstract skills within the important areas of Language, Math and Science.

Curriculum Pace Student-paced

  • Standard-enriched
  • Accelerated
  • Student-paced

The main curriculum pace is non-standardized and is HIGHLY responsive to the pacing of individual students, (via differentiated instruction, differentiated assessment, etc). In theory, some students outpace the default/normalized curriculum, while others spend periods "behind schedule" if they need the extra time.

Flexible pacing:

Flexible pacing style = offered
Subject-streaming (tracking)
Multi-age classrooms as standard
Ability-grouping (in-class) as common
Frequent use of cyber-learning (at-their-own-pace)
Regular guided independent study opportunities
Differentiated assessment

What TMMS says about flexible pacing: The Montessori method blends children in early Preschool through K into a single classroom. Guide and Assistant work individually with each child using materials ranging from preliminary and on to advanced at the K level. Students completing year 3, test well above grade level and some achieve several levels above.

Academic Culture Supportive

  • Rigorous
  • Supportive

A school with a “supportive” academic culture focuses more on process than short-term outcomes: academic performance is a welcomed side-benefit, but not the driving focus. This does not mean the school lacks standards, or has low expectations for its students: a school can have a supportive academic culture and still light the fire of ambition in its students. It does mean, however, the school provides a less intensive culture than schools with a “rigorous” academic classification, and is focused more simply on instilling a love of learning and life-long curiosity.

What TMMS says: One brilliant aspect of the Montessori method is that every child is allowed to excel in their area of interest. Usually, reading, writing, math, exploration of the natural world, and exploration of their personal world around them, are the top interests of any child. However, some excel in specific areas and are free to move at that faster pace. At the end of the three year program our graduates are solidly grounded with the skills to move forward in language, math, science and the natural world guided by their own unique strengths and skills and personality.

Developmental Priorities Intellectual, Balanced

Primary Developmental Priority: Intellectual
Academically strong, creative, and critical thinkers, capable of exercising rationality, apprehending truth, and making aesthetic distinctions.

Secondary Developmental Priority: Balanced
Equal attention is paid to a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social, and physical.

What TMMS says: Intellectual: (As a Preschool) - TMMS strives for the creation of a solid foundation on which to build all other academic skills. While: Balanced - indicates that a child of 3 is vastly different from a child of 6. Throughout the entire three year program as the development of the child progresses, the skills they acquire will change: initially these are almost entirely physical and exploration based, by the end of the program they are beginning their understanding of sophisticated language and academic concepts while also taking their first firm steps forward in emotional connections and socialization with their peers.

Special Needs Support No support

No support

TMMS offers no/limited support for students with learning difficulties or special needs.

  • Academic Support:
    Support Type = offered
    Learning strategy and study counselling; habit formation
    Extra support and minor accommodations for children experiencing subclinical difficulties
  • Mild but clinically diagnosed ADHD
    Support Type = offered
    Extra support
  • What TMMS says: Children with a minor diagnosed difficulty are accepted at The Maria Montessori School. Because all children find some aspects of some tasks difficult to some degree at some point in their development, the Montessori method seamlessly adapts to the developmental pace of both gifted and challenged learners alike.

  • Support for moderate-to-severe special needs:
    Special needs
    ADHD (moderate to severe)
    Learning disabilities
    Dyslexia (Language-Based Learning Disability)
    Auditory Processing Disorder (APD)
    Language Processing Disorder
    Nonverbal Learning Disorders (NLD)
    Visual Perceptual/Visual Motor Deficit
    Asperger's Syndrome
    Down syndrome
    Intellectual disability
    Williams syndrome
    Behavioral and Emotional
    Troubled behaviour / troubled teens
    Clinical Depression
    Clinical anxiety
    Suicidal thoughts
    Drug and alcohol abuse
    Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
    Multiple sclerosis
    Cerebral palsy
    Muscular dystrophy
    Spina Bifida
    Dyspraxia (Developmental Coordination Disorder)
    Cystic Fibrosis
    Multiple physical
  • Forms of support delivery:
    Support Type = offered
    A regular class with indirect support
    A regular class with resource assistance
    A regular class with withdrawal assistance
    A special education class with partial integration
    A full-time special education class
  • Additional Support:
    Support Type = offered
    Social skills programs
    Occupational therapy
    Speech-language therapy
  • Summary: We do accept special needs students, and with some minor adaptation and accommodation they are presented materials and advance as any other child. In virtually all cases the child continues through the full three year program with noticeable and sometimes very significant benefits.

Gifted Learner Support In-class adaptations

Dedicated gifted programs:

Program = offered
Full-time gifted program (parallel to rest of school)
Part-time gifted program (pull-out; parallel to rest of class)

Curriculum delivery: Enrichment (The main focus is on enrichment. This means that while students may work at a marginally quicker pace than public school peers, the primary aim is to study subject in broader and deeper ways.)

In-class adaptations:
Practice = offered
Custom subject enrichment (special arrangement)
Custom curriculum compacting (special arrangement)
Guided independent study (custom gifted arrangement)
Cyber-learning opportunities (custom gifted arrangement)
Formalized peer coaching opportunities (specifically for gifted learners to coach others)
Custom subject acceleration (special arrangement)
Career exploration (custom gifted arrangement)
Project-based learning (custom gifted arrangement)
Mentorships (custom gifted arrangement)

What TMMS says: The Montessori method allows gifted children at preschool and K level to accelerate in their areas of interest. Our school accommodates these children with an expanded range of activities to enrich their learning. Advanced guidance for gifted students will utilize elementary level materials in the areas of Math, Language, Science and Geography. However, the school maintains a balanced approach to child development. Emotional and social interactions always move towards the development of the whole person.

Gifted education: If you want to learn more about gifted education, check out our comprehensive guide. It’s the first of its kind: it covers different kinds of gifted schools and programs, and a whole host of issues parents face in finding the right option for their gifted child.

Homework Policy

In grade K, The Maria Montessori School students perform an average of No homework of homework per night.

Nightly Homework
TMMS 0 mins0 mins
Site Average2 mins6 mins

Report Card Policy

How assessments are delivered across the grades:

Prose (narrative)-based feedbackK to K
Parent-teacher meetingsPreschool to K

Class Sizes Not available

This information is not currently available.


What TMMS says:
  • Science: During the year guests are brought in to introduce children to science ideas in an age appropriate manner.
  • Natural History: Our location, though in the middle of Surrey has many opportunities for the children to explore the plants and animals around them. Our explore garden contains many native species and many birds can be seen and identified.

  • Sports OfferedCompetitiveRecreational
    Ice Hockey
    Track & Field
  • Clubs offered: None

Tuition & Financial Aid


Day (Half day)$3,500$3,900
What TMMS says: Very young children sometimes start at less than 5 days per week and fees adjust appropriately. In such cases admission is by interview and special permission may be required. Students that qualify for Government Subsidy at the preschool level are accepted.

Need-based financial aid

This information is not currently available.

Merit based Scholarships

This information is not currently available.


Total enrollment 20
Average enrollment per grade5
Average class size18 to 20
Gender (grades)Preschool to K (Coed)
Boarding offeredNo

Student distribution: This information is not currently available.



Admissions Assessments:

Assessment = requiredGrades
InterviewPS - K
SSAT (out of province)
Entrance Exam(s)
Entrance Essay
Application Fee 

Application Deadlines:

Day students:

What TMMS says:

Parents are always encouraged to view an active class for themselves. Places may be reserved in advance for new children before the start of the school year. Children between 2 1/2 and the age of 3 are allowed into the class, but there are conditions including a mandated limited number of placements. Contact us for further information. Usually students enroll in the summer months and begin in September, but if space is available, entry can be in January. Usually mid-year entry is by prior arrangement through interview, observation of a class, and placement on a waiting list.


Acceptance Rate:


Type of student The Maria Montessori School is looking for: All students are welcome, and students not yet fluent in English quickly gain skill and confidence. The Montessori Method with its daily two to three hour preschool classes and half day Kindergarten is best complemented by active structured programs, by unstructured play, or by individual exploration by the child with family. The Maria Montessori School does not use any screens and very much encourages parents and families to adhere to recommended screen time guidelines.

Student Entry Points

Student TypePSK
Day Acceptance
(Acceptance rate)
8 - 12 (95%)1 - 2 (15%)


  • Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) Associations

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