AN OUR KIDS REPORT:Academy for Gifted Children - P.A.C.E. vs. La Villa Montessori School

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View Academy for Gifted Children - P.A.C.E.'s full report
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View La Villa Montessori School's full report

  • SCHOOL LOCATION

    Distance From

    Map

    Address

    Address

    12 Bond Crescent, Richmond Hill, Ontario, L4E 3K2, Canada

    1943 Ironoak Way Unit 106, Oakville, Ontario, L6H0N1, Canada

  • SCHOOL OVERVIEW

    Basics

    Basics

    Founded

    1993

    2012

    Enrolment

    280

    90

    Grades

    1 to 8

    Nursery/Toddler to 6

    Gender

    Coed

    Coed

    Living arrangements

    Day

    Day

    Language of instruction

    English

    English, French

    Faith Based

    School focus

    Academic

    Academic

    Developmental Priorities

    Intellectual
    The goal is to cultivate "academically strong, creative and critical thinkers, capable of exercising rationality, apprehending truth, and making aesthetic distinctions."
    Balanced
    Equal emphasis is placed on a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social and physical cultivation.
    Balanced
    Equal emphasis is placed on a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social and physical cultivation.

    Academics

    Academics

    Curriculum

    Traditional

    Montessori

    Curriculum pace

    Accelerated
    The main curriculum accelerates beyond the pace of the provincial one; ALL students do the work of OLDER public-school peers in tangible and measurable ways. This accelerated pace is maintained by the teachers and school, (through textbook selection, topic selection, grading, assignment standards and expectations, etc).
    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.

    Academic culture

    Rigorous
    A school with a “rigorous” academic culture places a high value on academic performance, and expects their students to do the same. This does not mean the school is uncaring, unsupportive, or non-responsive -- far from it. A school can have a rigorous academic culture and still provide excellent individual support. It does mean, however, the school places a particular emphasis on performance -- seeking the best students and challenging them to the fullest extent -- relative to a normal baseline. High expectations and standards – and a challenging yet rewarding curriculum – are the common themes here. Keep in mind this classification is more relevant for the older grades: few Kindergarten classrooms, for example, would be called “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.

    Avg. Class Size

    Varies

    Varies

    Special needs support

    Gifted learner support

    Dedicated gifted school

    Preschool/K curriculum

    Academic
    Academic-based preschools and Kindergartens are the most structured of the different types, and have a strong emphasis on math and reading readiness skills. These programs aim to expose children to what early-elementary school is like. While time is still allotted to free play, much of the day is built around explicit lessons guided by the teacher. Classrooms often resemble play-based ones (with different stations set up around the room), but at an Academic program the teacher leads students through the stations directly, and ties these activities to a whole-class lesson or theme.
    Montessori
    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.

    Tuition

    Tuition

    Day Tuition

    $18,500

    $8,100 to $15,608

    Boarding Tuition

    Financial aid (FA)

    No

    No

    Students on FA

    0%

    0%

    Eligible grades for FA

    None

    None

    Median FA package size

    $0

    $0

    Enrollment

    Enrollment

    Avg. enrollment per grade

    35

    8

    Percent in boarding

    0%

    0%

    Admissions

    Admissions

    Admissions rate

    75%

    100%

    Day entry years

    SK, K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

    Nursery/Toddler, Preschool, JK, SK, K

    Boarding entry years

    Day admissions deadline

    Rolling

    Rolling

    Boarding admissions deadline

    Not available

    Not available

    Interview required?

    Yes: grades 1 - 8

    Yes: grades Nursery/Toddler - K

    SSAT required

    No

    No

  • OUR PERSPECTIVE

    The Our Kids Review

    The Our Kids Review

    ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

    information not available

    LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

    information not available

    Our Take

    Our Take

    ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

    The PACE program was developed with gifted students in mind, based in an understanding of what they share—overall ability—as well as what they don't, such as specific talents, interests, and curiosities. The term of art is differentiated programming, though it's a term that can easily lend itself to misunderstanding. It doesn't mean that different students proceed through the curricula at different rates or are each given separate tasks based on their individual abilities. Rather, within a differentiated program all students proceed at the same pace through the material, while instructors provide multiple entry points that address the needs of individual students within the class. The ideal student is one who has been identified as gifted, and who requires challenge in order to succeed in academic work.

    View full report

    LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

    La Villa rightly prides itself in offering a very authentic presentation of the Montessori method, and for many families that is a primary draw. As such, students are engaged in an active, hands-on, cooperative environment, where the core curriculum is delivered in consort with a growing understanding of their place in the community of the school and beyond. Close attention is given to the acquisition of skills as well as interpersonal, physical, and emotional development.

    View full report
  • INSIDER PERSPECTIVES

    Written Reviews

    Written Reviews

    ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

    "he administration and teaching staff truly want all students to succeed to their highest potential."
    Melanie Maresch - Parent   (Mar 09, 2023)
    Both of our kids love the culture and environment at PACE. They have many close friendships that hav... View full review

    "It offers a challenging, yet well-balanced curriculum in every grade."
    Yuliya M - Parent   (Mar 13, 2023)
    Our daughter's experience at the Academy for Gifted Children - P.A.C.E. has been rewarding. She has ... View full review

    "The quality of teaching at PACE has always surpassed our expectations."
    Raminder Juneja - Parent   (Mar 22, 2023)
    Both of our children have had wonderful experiences at PACE. The collaborative, supportive learning ... View full review

    LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

    "My child appreciates the independence"
    hina marsonia - Parent   (Feb 13, 2018)
    My child appreciates the independence she has in choosing her activities and material that she works... View full review

    Teachers instill confidence and motivation
    Christine Johnson - Parent   (Feb 16, 2018)
    My child's experience has been better than I ever could have imagined. Even if we have had a bad mo... View full review

  • SCHOOL LEADERSHIP

    Message from school leadership

    Message from school leadership

    My journey at P.A.C.E. began in 1999 and in 2019 I was delighted to assume the role of Director/Principal. The most rewarding part of my job is interacting with the students. They are fun loving, witty and demonstrate an intellectual curiosity that is any educator's dream. The energy level in the building is very high, the questioning by the students is incessant, and there are a lot of laughs. The skills for succeeding at P.A.C.E., whether in the role of teacher or student, are the same: a love of learning, high motivation, an excellent work ethic and a sense of humour. I am so fortunate to be surrounded by excellent teachers and a strong administrative staff: Liana, the Assistant to the Director; our Vice Principals, Caroline Corbit and Joanne Abela; and our Administrative Assistant, Irina. Every September we look forward to yet another passionate and exciting year for all.

             La Villa Montessori School came to fruition after years of imagining what the ideal environment would be like for my own children. I had come to truly understand the African proverb, "It takes a village to raise a child" in order to provide the most positive and healthy environment for the children to thrive in every way. In Latin, the word Villa (Villam) refers to a farm or village and so it became La Villa Montessori School and the very essence of our community. After our first year of operating in 2015, I saw that having a strong cohesive community between the parents and staff at La Villa being a pillar of support and guidance for the children in our care.  We continue to provide the highest level of care and compassion for the children while fostering a trust and support with our parents. 

    As one of a handful of internationally recognized Montessori schools in Canada following AMI’s standards of quality and authenticity, we are very proud to have this distinction to support and grow the Montessori movement around the world. 

    I invite you to visit us and see what La Villa Montessori School is all about. Thank you.

  • ACADEMICS

    • OVERALL CURRICULUM


      Primary Curriculum

      Primary Curriculum

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      Traditional


      Secondary Curriculum

      Secondary Curriculum

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      Information not available

      LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

      Information not available


      Our Take: primary curriculum type

      Our Take: primary curriculum type

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      Traditional curricula tend to be very content-based and rooted in the core disciplines. It is a structured approach that involves the teacher delivering a unified curriculum through direct instruction. Students usually learn by observing and listening to their teacher, studying facts and concepts in textbooks, and completing both tests and written assignments - which challenge students to not only demonstrate their mastery of content but their ability to analyze and deconstruct it critically. Class discussions are also used to create critical dialogue around the content of the curriculum.

      LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

      Particularly popular in the younger grades (preschool to elementary), but sometimes available all the way up to high school, Montessori schools offer an alternative vision to the standard lesson format of most classrooms. Instead of listening to whole-class lessons, Montessori classrooms allow students to choose which "tasks" or activities interest them. These tasks centre around special Montessori puzzles - their essential feature being they contain a right answer and allow for selfcorrection. A strong emphasis is therefore placed on lessons being concrete and rooted in practical experience, along with students developing a sense of self-sufficiency, confidence and curiosity.


      Our Take: secondary curriculum type

      Our Take: secondary curriculum type

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      Not applicable


      What the school says about their curriculum

      What the school says about their curriculum

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      P.A.C.E. is a magnet school for students who have been identified as intellectually gifted by means of a psycho-educational assessment. The curriculum is differentiated through various methodologies and strategies i.e. compacting, identifying learning styles, creative problem solving, acceleration, inquiry-based learning, addressing the critical thinking skills, sophisticated field studies, greater depth and breadth of instruction, etc. in order to meet the special needs and characteristics of gifted kids. Our courses reflect high powered learning experiences for our gifted learners, including pre-AP courses offered in grade 8. To address the needs of the whole child, wonderful Fine Arts, Athletic, and Co-Instructional Programs complement our strong academic program. There is something truly special about being surrounded by people passionate about everything they do.

      LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

      Information not available

    • PRESCHOOL/K CURRICULUM


      Our Take

      Our Take

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      Academic-based preschools and Kindergartens are the most structured of the different types, and have a strong emphasis on math and reading readiness skills. These programs aim to expose children to what early-elementary school is like. While time is still allotted to free play, much of the day is built around explicit lessons guided by the teacher. Classrooms often resemble play-based ones (with different stations set up around the room), but at an Academic program the teacher leads students through the stations directly, and ties these activities to a whole-class lesson or theme.

      LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

      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.


      What the school says

      What the school says

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      Information not available

      LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

      La Villa Montessori School is dedicated to fulfill the intrinsic needs of each child by following Dr. Montessori’s principles and the guidelines of the Association Montessori Internationale ​(A.M.I.). Our mission is to create a safe, stimulating and nurturing environment that satisfies a child’s emotional, social, physical and intellectual needs. By addressing these needs, the children will have a wholesome growth while developing a life-long love of learning.

    • ACADEMIC CULTURE


      Our Take

      Our Take

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      A school with a “rigorous” academic culture places a high value on academic performance, and expects their students to do the same. This does not mean the school is uncaring, unsupportive, or non-responsive -- far from it. A school can have a rigorous academic culture and still provide excellent individual support. It does mean, however, the school places a particular emphasis on performance -- seeking the best students and challenging them to the fullest extent -- relative to a normal baseline. High expectations and standards – and a challenging yet rewarding curriculum – are the common themes here. Keep in mind this classification is more relevant for the older grades: few Kindergarten classrooms, for example, would be called “rigorous”.

      LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

      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 the school says

      LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

      Information not available


      Approach to student honours

      Approach to student honours

      ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

      "We honour and distinguish our brightest students, using them as examples for other students to follow."

      LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

      Information not available

  • EXTRACURRICULARS

    Competitive

    Comp.

    Recreational

    Rec.

    Competitive

    Comp.

    Recreational

    Rec.

    Badminton

    Baseball

    Basketball

    Canoeing/Kayaking

    Cricket

    Cross-country skiing

    Cycling

    Downhill skiing

    Equestrian

    Fencing

    Field Hockey

    Figure Skating

    Football

    Golf

    Gymnastics

    Ice Hockey

    Ice Skating

    Lacrosse

    Martial Arts

    Mountain biking

    Racquet Ball

    Rowing

    Rugby

    Running

    Sailing

    Skateboarding

    Snowboarding

    Soccer

    Softball

    Squash

    Swimming

    Tennis

    Track & Field

    Volleyball

    Weightlifting

    Wrestling

    Archery

    Curling

    Ultimate


    Clubs Offered

    Clubs offered

    ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

    Ballet and Classical Ballet
    Yoga
    Yearbook
    Student Council
    Scouting
    Science Club
    School newspaper
    Round Square
    Robotics club
    Radio club
    Poetry/Literature club
    Photography
    Paintball
    Outdoor Education
    Outdoor Club
    Online Magazine
    Musical theatre/Opera
    Math Club
    Jazz Ensemble
    Habitat for Humanity
    Foreign Language Club
    Environmental Club
    Drama Club
    Debate Club
    Dance Club
    Computer Club
    Community Service
    Choir
    Chess Club
    Band
    Audiovisual Club
    Astronomy Club
    Art Club
    Animation

    LA VILLA MONTESSORI SCHOOL

    Ballet and Classical Ballet
    Yoga
    Yearbook
    Student Council
    Scouting
    Science Club
    School newspaper
    Round Square
    Robotics club
    Radio club
    Poetry/Literature club
    Photography
    Paintball
    Outdoor Education
    Outdoor Club
    Online Magazine
    Musical theatre/Opera
    Math Club
    Jazz Ensemble
    Habitat for Humanity
    Foreign Language Club
    Environmental Club
    Drama Club
    Debate Club
    Dance Club
    Computer Club
    Community Service
    Choir
    Chess Club
    Band
    Audiovisual Club
    Astronomy Club
    Art Club
    Animation


    What the school says

    What the school says

    ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

    • Our students participate in many extracurricular competitions, most notably in drama and improv, robotics, reach for the top, model UN, chess and athletics.
  • Financial Aid

    Grades eligible

    Grades eligible

    Students on aid

    Students on aid

    0%

    0%

    Avg. aid package (annual)

    Avg. aid package (annual)

    $0

    $0

  • ADMISSIONS

    Admissions

    Admissions rate

    75%

    100%

    Day entry years

    SK, K, 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10, 11, 12

    Nursery/Toddler, Preschool, JK, SK, K

    Boarding entry years

    Day admissions deadline

    Rolling

    Rolling

    Boarding admissions deadline

    Not available

    Not available

    Interview required?

    Yes: grades 1 - 8

    Yes: grades Nursery/Toddler - K

    SSAT required

    No

    No

    SSAT(out of province) required

    No

    No

    Entrance exams required

    No

    No

    Entrance essay required

    No

    No

    Application fee required

    No

    No

    Type of student school is looking for

    Type of student school is looking for

    ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

    The first critierion for P.A.C.E. is that the student is identified as intellectual gifted. We are looking for bright individuals who are passionate about learning and are productive citizens within the school.

    What the school says

    What the school says

    ACADEMY FOR GIFTED CHILDREN - P.A.C.E.

    All students are required to have a psycho-educational assessment (WISC V).  If the student scores in the 95th percentile or higher in verbal reasoning and visual perception, on paper, that child would qualify for P.A.C.E.  The next step would be to have a meeting with the family and for the student to visit for the day. Feedback regarding the child's visit is provided. 

  • NOTABLE ALUMNI

    Alumni

    information not available
    information not available

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