Founded in 1980 by best-selling author, Sidney Ledson, SLI excels in offering the best of traditional and innovative education to children from preschool to grade 6.
Building on internationally acclaimed preschool reading success, SLI has grown into a hub for ground-breaking student achievement in literary, STEM, and artistic domains across all grade levels.
Our tradition of excellence has continued online, and we now offer online and on-site participation options for the 2021-2022 year.
Online Preschool Program
On-Site and Online Kindergarten Program
On-Site and Online Elementary School Program
Full-day Live Teacher instruction and Assistance On-Site and Online
Online Participation in Math, Literary, and Entrepreneurship Contests
Small Class Sizes
Learning at Sidney Ledson Institute during COVID-19
Preschool - Gr. 6
JK - Gr. 6
What Sidney Ledson Institute says: We are now offering on-site and online participation options for JK - Gr 6 students. Preschoolers can continue to learn to language and numeracy schools from the comfort of home through our online program format.
The school was founded in 1982 in order to create a program that reflected the work of Sidney Ledson, an author and expert on topics relating to teaching technology and motivation. His methods gained traction internationally, at the core of which is the idea that we needn’t wait to introduce children to new skill areas (specifically around language and numeracy) and the sooner we start, the better. His books on reading expanded the concept and application of phonics, and his work remains a foundation for the language arts programs at the institute today. There, and elsewhere, the approach intends to challenge students to reach further, to expand and improve their abilities in order to reach their fullest academic potentials. The ideal student is one operating at the top of his or her peer group, and, in the later grades, is preparing for success within university studies.
Central to your child's school experience is the underlying curriculum taught in the classroom. "Curriculum" refers to both what is taught and how it's taught. When considering the different curricula outlined in the next few pages, keep in mind that few schools fall neatly into one category or another. Most schools' curricula comprise a blend of best practices drawn from multiple curriculum types. Having said that, most schools do have a general overall curriculum type. These are identified for each school on OurKids.net.
Curriculum approach at Sidney Ledson Institute: Traditional
Sidney Ledson Institute has a Traditional approach to Curriculum (as opposed to Liberal Arts, Progressive, Montessori, Reggio Emilia, Waldorf approach).
[Show: About Traditional?]
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.
Curriculum at schools on OurKids.net
Traditional - 15%   Liberal arts - 17%   Progressive - 17%   Montessori - 17%   Reggio Emilia - 17%   Waldorf - 17%
What Sidney Ledson Institute says: Our approach to teaching is an early introduction to reading, learning, and critical thinking which develops an interest, curiosity, an out-of-the-box thought process, and thirst for more knowledge. Students find themselves working at advanced grade levels, not defined or limited by boundaries, and constantly seek challenges. Our enriched academic curriculum is a stimulant for growing minds through the grades, and in the final year at the school, students are prepared for entry to the most sought after schools through the test preparatory program for IB, TOPS, GIFTED, and SSAT. Our nurturing teachers and conducive school environment, coupled with small class sizes offer the advantage of individualized learning and the opportunity for the children to express themselves, lead, excel and develop a self-confidence that they will carry through.
Programs that balance systematic and process approaches equally likely have an emphasis on giving young students ample opportunities to write, while providing supplementary class-wide instruction in grammar, parts of sentences, and various writing strategies.
Social Studies approach at Sidney Ledson Institute: Expanding Communities
Sidney Ledson Institute has an Expanding Communities approach to Social Studies (as opposed to Core Knowledge , Thematic approach).
[Show: About Expanding Communities?]
The Expanding Communities approach organizes the curriculum around students’ present, everyday experience. In the younger grades, students might learn about themselves, for example. As they move through the grades, the focus gradually broadens in scope: to the family, neighbourhood, city, province, country, and globe. The curriculum tends to have less focus on history than Core Knowledge programs.
A major effort is made to integrate the development of digital literacy throughout the curriculum and in everything students do. Digital literacy is understood to be a fundamental skill in the 21st century: it therefore follows, the idea goes, that teachers should find ways to connect every lesson back to technology. Effort is made to ensure the use of technology is meaningful and advances students’ skills beyond what they would otherwise be from using computers outside the classroom.
Computers and Technology at schools on OurKids.net
Heavy integration - 33%   Light integration - 20%   Medium integration - 47%
Sex and health education approach at Sidney Ledson Institute: Not Ontario curriculum
Sidney Ledson Institute has a Not Ontario curriculum approach to Sex and health education (as opposed to Follows provincial curriculum approach).
[Show: About Not Ontario curriculum?]
The sex education curriculum does NOT follow the provincial one taught in public schools - either in terms of structure, pacing, focus, and/or tone.
Sex and health education at schools on OurKids.net
Does not follow prrovincial curriculum - 45%   Follows provincial curriculum - 55%
Approach to sex and health education: Mostly value-neutral
Sidney Ledson Institute has a approach Mostly value-neutral (as opposed to Fairly value-based approach).
[Show: About Mostly value-neutral?]
By and large, students are taught about sex free of any particular moral or ethical standpoint. The school doesn't impose any particular values or value systems (such as social, political, or ideological values) on students when teaching sex and related issues.
What Sidney Ledson Institute says: The school policy is to leave discussions pertaining to procreation to the parents of the children whenever they feel the child is ready for this discussion. Should the child have questions for the teachers regarding the subject, the teacher will offer a brief explanation in a scientific manner related to biology.
Preschools and kindergartens tend to have a particular curriculum or curricular approach. This refers to what is taught and how it's taught. Most preschools have a curriculum that comprises a blend of best practices drawn from multiple curriculum types. A preschool's curriculum may or may not, though, reflect its higher-level curriculum (if it's part of a school with elementary or secondary programs)
Preschool/K Curriculum approach at Sidney Ledson Institute: Academic
Sidney Ledson Institute has an Academic approach to Preschool/K Curriculum (as opposed to Play-based, Montessori, Waldorf, Reggio Emilia approach).
[Show: About 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.
What Sidney Ledson Institute says: Supplementing the enriched academic program, our Pre-school and Kindergarten classes engage in various intelligence raising and memory enhancement activities. An introduction to French, Kinder Music, Drama, Piano, Chess, and hands-on science workshops instills in our young students the early quest for knowledge.
This refers to the rate at which students move through the curriculum (e.g., topics, textbook material, skills, etc.). Curriculum pace is often defined in comparison to provincial standards.
Curriculum Pace approach at Sidney Ledson Institute: Accelerated
Sidney Ledson Institute has an Accelerated approach to Curriculum Pace (as opposed to Standard-enriched, Student-paced approach).
[Show: About 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).
What Sidney Ledson Institute says: Maintaining a low student-teacher ratio for individual attention, coupled with constant reinforcement of concepts learned, promotes a strong semantic foundation and accelerated development of skills for success.
Flexible pacing style
Flexible pacing style
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
What Sidney Ledson Institute says about flexible pacing: Every child starting the school is assessed in the first few days to determine the their abilities in all subject matters. Following this, the student is issued remedial, reinforcement, and /or advanced material to ensure understanding and smooth progress.
Through the collective mindset of teachers, administrators, students, and parents, each school develops and maintains its own academic culture. This generally relates to the norms and expectations created around academic performance. Many parents look to private schools because they want a specific type of culture. Some want a rigorous environment that will elevate their child to new heights. Others want a nurturing environment that will help their child develop a passion for learning.
Academic Culture approach at Sidney Ledson Institute: Supportive
Sidney Ledson Institute has a Supportive approach to Academic Culture (as opposed to Rigorous approach).
[Show: About 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.
Academic Culture at schools on OurKids.net
Supportive - 50%   Rigorous - 50%
What Sidney Ledson Institute says: There is an inextricable interplay between rigour and support, with celebration attributed to efforts over accolades.
Schools have specific goals regarding how they want their educate and develop their students. This is part of a school's overall philosophy or vision, which is contained in its mission statement. While they tend have several developmental aims, schools tend to priortize certain aims, such as intellectual, social, spiritual, emotional, or physical development.
Primary Developmental Priority: Intellectual
The goal is to cultivate "academically strong, creative and critical thinkers, capable of exercising rationality, apprehending truth, and making aesthetic distinctions."
Secondary Developmental Priority: Balanced
"Equal emphasis is placed on a balance of priorities: intellectual, emotional, social and physical cultivation."
What Sidney Ledson Institute says: The school's developmental priority is to promote and nurture social, intellectual and academic growth. Starting from the Preschool class, and all the way to the Grade 6 class, our focus is to not only nurture self-awareness and leadership abilities in students, but to also encourage them to embrace their hard work in building a mindset primed for natural high achievement.
Schools offer a wide range of approaches and services to support students with special needs. This may include individualized learning, one-on-one support, small classes, resource rooms, and learning aids. These supports may be provided in a number of different environments such as a dedicated special needs school or class, an integrated class, a withdrawal class, or a regular class with resource support or in-class adaptations.
Sidney Ledson Institute offers Indirect Support
Students remain in a regular classroom for the whole day; the teacher receives special training in accommodating special needs and/or learning disabled students.
What Sidney Ledson Institute says about their special need support: Our teachers are trained to identify and follow a strategy-development protocol in partnership with parents and on-site specialists for the purpose of navigating developmental exceptionality that typically accompany high IQ (high-functioning Autism and ADHD). Due to the accelerated academics at all grade-levels, our program is not recommended for students with intellectual or other learning disabilities.
Learning strategy and study counselling; habit formation
Extra support and minor accommodations for children experiencing subclinical difficulties
This is a learning disability that can limit a child's ability to read and learn. It can have a variety of traits. A few of the main ones are impaired phonological awareness and decoding, problems with orthographic coding, and auditory short-term memory impairment.
Auditory Processing Disorder (APD)
This is a sound differentiation disorder involving problems with reading, comprehension, and language.
This is a kind of specific learning disability in math. Kids with this math disorder have problems with calculation. They may also have problems with math-related concepts such as time and money.
This is a kind of specific learning disability in writing. It involves problems with handwriting, spelling, and organizing ideas.
Language Processing Disorder
This is characterized by having extreme difficulty understanding what is heard and expressing what one wants to say. These disorders affect the area of the brain that controls language processing.
Nonverbal Learning Disorders (NLD)
These involve difficulties interpreting non-verbal cues, such as facial expressions and body language. They're usually characterized by a significant discrepancy between higher verbal skills and weaker motor, visual-spatial, and social skills.
Visual Perceptual/Visual Motor Deficit
A characteristic seen in people with learning disabilities such as Dysgraphia or Non-verbal LD. It can result in missing subtle differences in shapes or printed letters, losing place frequently, struggles with cutting, holding pencil too tightly, or poor eye/hand coordination.
Refers to a range of conditions that involve challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviors, and speech and nonverbal communication. They also involve unique strengths and differences. For instance, there are persons with both low- and high-functioning autism (some claim the latter is identical to Asperger's syndrome).
On the autism spectrum, Asperger's is considered quite mild in terms of symptoms. While traits can vary widely, many kids with Asperger's struggle with social skills. They also sometimes fixate on certain subjects and engage in repetitive behaviour.
his is associated with impairment of cognitive ability and physical growth, and a particular set of facial characteristics.
This is a condition characterized by significant limitations in intellectual functioning (e.g., reasoning, learning, and problem solving). Intellectual disabilities are also known as general learning disabilities (and used to be referred to as a kind of mental retardation).
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is an umbrella term used to describe the range of effects that can occur in an individual whose mother consumed alcohol during pregnancy. These may include growth deficits, facial anomalies, and damage to the central nervous system, which can lead to cognitive, behavioural, and other problems.
roubled teens tend to have problems that are intense, persistent, and can lead to quite unpredictable behaviour. This can lead to behavioural and emotional issues, such as drug and alcohol abuse, criminal behaviour, eating disorders, depression, and anxiety.
This is a mental health disorder also called "major depression." It involves persistent feelings of sadness, loss, and anger. According to the Mayo Clinic, symptoms are usually severe enough to cause noticeable problems in relationships with others or in daily activities, such as school, work, or one's social life.
This is a mood disorder involving intense, relentless feelings of distress and fear. They can also have excessive and persistent worry about everyday situations, and repeated episodes of intense anxiety or terror.
This involves persistent thoughts about ending one's life.
Drug and alcohol abuse
This involves the excessive use of drug and/or alcohol, which interferes with daily functioning.
Oppositional Defiant Disorder (ODD)
This is a disruptive behavioural disorder which normally involves angry outbursts, often directed at people of authority. This behaviour must last continuously for six months or more and significantly interfere with daily functioning.
This is a condition of the central nervous system. It affects the brain, optic nerves, and spinal cord. Symptoms can include fatigue, loss of motor control, memory loss, depression, and cognitive difficulties.
his refers to a group of permanent movement disorders that appear in early childhood. CP is caused by abnormal development or damage to the parts of the brain that control movement, balance, and posture.
Muscular dystrophy is a neuromuscular disorder which weakens the body's muscles. Causes, symptoms, age of onset, and prognosis vary between individuals.
This is a condition present at birth due to the incomplete formation of the spine and spinal cord. It can lead to a number of physical challenges, including paralysis or weakness in the legs, bowel and bladder incontinence, hydrocephalus (too much fluid in the brain), and deformities of the spine.
Dyspraxia (Developmental Coordination Disorder)
This is a Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD). Also known as "sensory integration disorder," it affects fine and/or gross motor coordination in children and adults. It may also affect speech.
Visual impairment is a decreased ability or inability to see that can't be fixed in usual ways, such as with glasses. Some people are completely blind, while others have what's called "legal blindness."
Hearing impairment, also known as "hearing loss," is a partial or total inability to hear. The degree of hearing impairment varies between people. It can range from complete hearing loss (or deafness) to partial hearing loss (meaning the ears can pick up some sounds).
Cystic Fibrosis (CF) is an inherited genetic condition, which affects the body's respiratory, digestive, and reproductive systems. It affects young children and adults.
Accommodating a wide range of physical conditions and disabilities.
Schools support students with gifted or advanced learning abilities in a several ways. Whether they offer a full-time gifted program or part-time support, they normally provide some form of accelerated learning (delivering content at a faster pace) or enrichment (covering content more broadly or deeply). Many schools also offer a wide range of in-class adaptations to support advanced learners, such as guided independent studies, project-based learning, and career exploration.
Dedicated gifted programs:
Full-time gifted program (parallel to rest of school)
Part-time gifted program (pull-out; parallel to rest of class)
Curriculum delivery: Acceleration and enrichment (There is an equal emphasis on acceleration and enrichment.)
What Sidney Ledson Institute says: Founded by a member of Mensa (the world's oldest and largest high IQ society), and currently overseen by a member of Mensa Canada's national Gifted Youth Committee, our program serves to engage and challenge gifted students.
Homework is work that's assigned to students for completion outside of regular class time. There's a long-standing debate over homework. Should homework be assigned to school-age children? If so, in what grades? And how much homework should be assigned? In selecting the right school for your child, it's important to look closely at a school's homework policy.
In grade Gr. 6, Sidney Ledson Institute students perform an average of 1 hour of homework per night.
Sidney Ledson Institute
What Sidney Ledson Institute says about their flipped classroom policy: This information is not currently available.
While all schools measure individual progress and achievement in students, they have different ways of doing this. For instance, many traditional schools gauge progress through report cards, which give students lettered or numbered grades. Other schools, meanwhile, measure progress in other ways, either in addition to or instead of giving grades. For instance, they may offer prose-based feedback (i.e, comments), academic achievement reporting, habits and behaviour reporting, and parent-teacher meetings. In choosing the right school for your child, take a close look at its policy for measuring the individual progress of students.
While academics remain the priority for most private schools, many also place a strong focus on a well-rounded education and encourage participation in extracurricular activities such as sports, music, arts, or clubs. Involvement in extracurriculars helps stimulate students in their studies, makes them more motivated to learn, and can make school more enjoyable and fulfilling. Extracurricular activities can also provide students with a much-needed break from the stresses of academics, while helping them to develop skills and allowing them to take part in valuable social situations.
What Sidney Ledson Institute says:
Digit Art (Photoshop, VR Art, and more)
Competitive/Recreational Chess Training and Tournament Participation
This information is not currently available.
Sidney Ledson Institute offers 6 clubs and extracurricular programs.
This can depend on a number of factors, including the type of school, living arrangements, what’s included in tuition, school location, resources, and facilities. Many private schools in Canada have tuition that ranges between $6,000 and $12,000 a year. While some schools, such as schools which provide room and board, can be more expensive, many of these schools provide ways to defray the costs of tuition. For instance, they may offer merit-based scholarships or needs-based financial aid (often referred to as “bursaries” or “subsidies”).
What Sidney Ledson Institute says about their tuition: This information is not currently available.
2nd child (sibling)
3rd child (sibling)
4th child (sibling)
Need-based financial aid
Sidney Ledson Institute does not offer need-based financial aid.
Private schools come in all shapes and sizes. Some larger schools have enrolment numbers in the thousands, while some smaller schools have only a few dozen students. Boarding schools tend to be on the larger side, while alternative schools, such as Montessori, Reggio Emilia, and Waldorf, are normally smaller. Besides the overall size of school, there are other important facts you’ll want to know about a school’s enrolment. For instance, here you can learn about a school’s enrolment for separate streams (if they have them), such as day and boarding, its average class size, and its average enrolment per grade.
JK to Gr. 6
Preschool to Gr. 6
Average class size
10 to 12
% of international students (total enrolment)
Number of different nationalities within student population
Private schools in Canada have admissions policies. All schools have some required application materials, though these vary between schools. These may include letters of application, application fees, essays, and exams (such as the SSAT). Many schools also require interviews with prospective students, either with their parents, on their own, or both. Schools also have different standards and priorities when evaluating student applications, different acceptance rates (which may vary between grade levels), and target different kinds of students. To improve your child’s chances of acceptance, you should find out everything you can about a school’s admissions policies and how they assess applicants.
Please email [email protected] to request an admissions application package for your desired grade of entry.
Acceptance Rate: 50%
This is the percentage of applicants typically accepted into the school. So if 50 students are admitted out of 100 applicants, the school has an overall acceptance rate of 50%.
Student Entry Points
This shows approximately how many openings there are likely to be in each grade in a typical year, as well as the estimated acceptance rate for each grade level.
Day Acceptance (Acceptance rate)
Type of student Sidney Ledson Institute is looking for:
Our admissions process is geared to select students that present a strong academic record, effective social regulation skills, and an observable drive and openness to learn and adapt as leaders and team players.
The Sidney Ledson Institute is a visible expression of the philosophy embodied in Sidney Ledson's books, "Raising Brighter Children" and "Teach your Child to Read in 10 Minutes a Day." Our PK - Gr. 7 Program implements this philosophy at the school to raise IQ, provide enriched academics, and promote self-confidence in our students, to not only succeed, but excel through their primary education, and then through their Alumni years at Toronto's most academically elite secondary and post-secondary institutions.
Join the Our Kids roundtable discussion about Sidney Ledson Institute. Alumni and current parents are answering questions and sharing their insights—about the school’s culture, strengths, and weaknesses.