The beginning is crucial. The first education experience must enable a love of learning and a joy of exploration and discovery. In our quickly changing world the Montessori Method is ideal as it excels in developing a child's full potential. Since 1991 The Maria Montessori School has brought the joy of learning and the wonder of the world to children through the brilliantly modern, highly relevant and very effective method developed more than 100 years ago - by Dr. Maria Montessori. As effective now as it was then.
Our Take: The Maria Montessori School
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.
Whole-class lectures should never be given. Students learn best through small group lessons, interaction, and independent work.
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.
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.
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.
External special education support isn't necessary. Core teachers can deal with all special education needs, by offering the relevant support for each student.
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.
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.
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.
Modern-day technology is never used in the classroom. This can interfere with students' social and emotional development and can be a distraction.
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.
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.
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.
Overall approach : Which option best describes your overall curricular approach?
32% of schools
Schools that adhere strictly to the original Montessori program. They follow Montessori principles to the letter.
50% of schools
Schools that adhere to the original Montessori program and principles. On occasion, though, they supplement it with modern curricular approaches or materials.
11% of schools
Schools that are faithful to the original Montessori program and principles, but sometimes supplement it with modern curricular approaches or materials.
6% of schools
Schools that are faithful to the original Montessori program and principles, but often supplement it with modern curricular approaches or materials.
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.
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 TMMS : Montessori
TMMS has a Montessori approach to Preschool/K Curriculum (as opposed to Play-based, Waldorf, Reggio Emilia, Academic approach).
[Show: About 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.
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.
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 TMMS : Student-paced
TMMS has a Student-paced approach to Curriculum Pace (as opposed to Standard-enriched, Accelerated approach).
[Show: About 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.
What TMMS says: Dr. Maria Montessori's "child-led" method is by design responsive to the strengths and needs of each child, while allowing for each to accelerate in area's they are specifically interested in. Gifted students find areas to explore in depth, while all students move through all areas carefully guided by our staff.
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 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.
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 TMMS : Supportive
TMMS 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 - 54%   Rigorous - 46%
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.
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 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.
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.
TMMS offers No support
TMMS offers no/limited support for students with learning difficulties or special needs.
What TMMS says about their special need support: 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.
Learning strategy and study counselling; habit formation
Extra support and minor accommodations for children experiencing subclinical difficulties
Mild but clinically diagnosed ADHD:
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.
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: 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.)
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.
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 K, TMMS students perform an average of No homework of homework per night.
What TMMS 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 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.
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”).
Day (Half day)
Day (Half day)
What TMMS says about their tuition: 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.
Private schools come in all shapes and sizes. Some larger schools have enrollment 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 enrollment. For instance, here you can learn about a school’s enrollment for separate streams (if they have them), such as day and boarding, its average class size, and its average enrollment per grade.
Preschool to K
Average enrollment per grade
Average class size
18 to 20
Preschool to K (Coed)
Percentage of students are international students
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.
PS - K
SSAT (out of province)
Day students: Rolling
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: 85%
Type of student TMMS 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.
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.