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Clanmore Montessori School:
The Our Kids Report > Reviews
Grades Nursery/Toddler TO Gr. 8 — Oakville, ON (Map)

Clanmore Montessori School:

Interview with Clanmore Montessori School PARENT, Diane and Julian Hogeterp

Julian and Diane Hogeterp are parents of former students at Clanmore Montessori School, and Diane also used to work at the school. They praised the school’s self-directed learning approach, passionate staff, community engagement, and emphasis on independence. They appreciated the school's nurturing environment and the contrast they experienced when their children moved to a traditional public school.

Video Contents

Highlights from the interview

  • It was an easy decision, because I had worked at the school previously, and we truly believed in the methodology of Montessori. Ultimately, knowing the staff, the methodology, the approach to education is what sold us. The school offers an excellent Montessori education for families that are interested in experiential learning. We knew that our children would be well cared for, based on how they teach, how the materials are presented.

  • The passion that the teachers have for the methodology, you really see it and it's contagious. I think that was probably something that I didn't anticipate and it wasn't until we were there that we realized, ‘Oh, my goodness, these people are really passionate about what they do.’ It's not only an education philosophy, it's a mindset, and it's a choice. I think that was a pleasant surprise.

  • ‘Clann Mór’ is Gaelic for ‘big family’, and that's what the school is. It’s an extension of our family, really. The staff has very few turnovers. People who started the school are still there. It is a community. If you're looking for something other than just the school, where parents meet other parents and become friends, and children get involved in activities, you're buying into a lifestyle. It isn't just the drop off. It's participation.

  • Our kids quickly felt a sense of belonging. They loved being there. They loved going to school and knowing that they were doing work there and a lot of excitement and energy for being at that school and that with that group of children. They enjoyed the teachers and then the staff that they got to work with. It was a positive experience, I think, all around.

  • One of the things we really like about the school is the self-directed learning, so the child gets to choose their path and things that interest them and excite them. The teachers are there to try to enable that path for them. I think that worked really well for our kids. They responded to that and appreciated that. Giving children the power to make decisions is huge. The freedom to make choices for themselves, knowing what they're responsible for doing, but getting to choose when they do it.

  • The kids gained the ability to do science experiments independently on their own. You can always tell when the fire has been lit inside of a child's mind and they're really interested in what they're learning, and they can't wait to talk to you about it. That happened a lot in our home.

  • Children are free to be who they want to be, free to have ideas and they're free to express them. They walk in and they have an idea on elephants and how to save elephants, then we're going to work with that. But really at the center of it is the children and their feelings. That when they walk in, this is their place, this is their second home.

  • Our kids had a sense that they mattered. Their actions not only mattered to the children around them, but the adults. If they had an idea for a fundraiser or a story, they could approach them and know that someone would always make the time for them. We moved from Clanmore, which is a Montessori School, to a public school in New Brunswick. With that school, our kids came home and said, ‘We have to sit all day and we don't get to talk.’ It felt like some of their freedom had been taken away, the freedom to move, the freedom to choose their work. It reinforced what we knew we really liked about the school and why it was important to us.

  • One of my fondest memories, and I think one of the things that the kids were proud of, was learning music, and being able to do this in the school environment. I'll always remember the piano recitals that were done at the school and with a really lovely music teacher.

  • The children not only did academic work, but they would take time to talk about their emotions, talking about freedom and responsibility. They learned about respect and values, by asking ‘What responsibilities do we have as human beings?

  • Relationships among the parents, and relationships between the staff members and the parents are really important to the school. Not only how things are between the children and the staff, but also between the parents with the staff. We were very engaged parents and wanted that relationship and sought that relationship. We were part of a larger group in a larger community, and that was something we really appreciated. We could go in and listen to reading if we wanted to. The doors were open.

  • There's genuine care for children and for the development of children. It's something that shines throughout. And, the staff is really good at coming together as a unit in doing that. That's something that always surprised me, not only as a former staff member but as a parent.

  • In our experience, the school was really open and receptive to feedback and appreciated discussions. We wanted a relationship and had questions and concerns and feedback. Our experience was that our feedback was very well received from the school, appreciated, and welcomed.


More about Clanmore Montessori School

Back to Clanmore Montessori School overview

More video reviews

Parent, Sheridan McLelland (2020)

Watch our parent interview with Sheridan McLelland to get the inside scoop on what it’s like to have a child attend Clanmore Montessori School.

Parent, Pauline Cheng (2021)

Watch our parent interview with Pauline Cheng to get the inside scoop on what it’s like to have a child attend Clanmore Montessori School.

More written reviews


Parent, Don Kerr (2019)

We have two boys at Clanmore, both of whom have attended since Toddler. We are truly part of the family at this school and throughout the many years we've seen our boys accomplish so very much. Most n...


Alum, Emily Johnson (2018)

When I was a student at Clanmore one of the many phrases that we had was "the little school with the big heart". Although the school has grown ten times over, they still are able to keep this atmosphe...


Parent, Karen Kafel (2018)

She loves going to school. She loves the activities, the kids and the teachers. She begs me every morning, even on the weekends, to go to school.

THE OUR KIDS REPORT: Clanmore Montessori School

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