About AGMS

Inspire.
Educate.
Empower.

Our goal at Aspen Grove Montessori School is to inspire, educate and empower the next generation of global citizens.

We provide a pristine, child-centered and supportive learning environment for each child to reach their full potential.

We nurture the child’s natural desire to learn, inspire their creativity and develop within them, values such as cooperation, compassion, respect and accountability, while establishing a life-long love of learning.

Aspen Grove Montessori School offers premium Montessori preschool education for children from the age of 18 months to 6 years. Established in 2016 within the heart of Aurora, the school boasts over 7500ft2 of space, divided into 6 classrooms and features an indoor gym. We provide a pristine, eco-friendly school facility for over 120 students with a focus on the well-being of every student.

Aspen Grove Montessori School offers Full-Day Toddler and Casa Montessori programs over the course of the school term from September – June of each year, together with March Camp and Summer Camp programs. We are fully licensed by the Ministry of Education and also a member of the Canadian Council of Montessori Administrators (CCMA) with an accredited Montessori curriculum.

Why Aspen Grove Montessori School?

Choosing the right school for your child may feel like an overwhelming decision. We focus on 7 pillars and these are the very reasons why parents entrust us with their children’s education.

1

Pristine Facility

At Aspen Grove Montessori, our facility is specifically designed and built to provide a nurturing and safe environment for our students to thrive intellectually and creatively.

  • Over 7500 ft2 of classroom space, with an all-season indoor gym and over 4500 ft2 of outdoor play space
  • Classrooms boast ample windows to provide natural lighting to create a nurturing environment
  • Natural and eco-friendly school facility
  • Forbo Flooring with natural materials and anti-bacterial properties
  • Child-Safe VOC-Free Interior Paint
  • Low-glare & flicker free classroom LED Lights

2

Qualified staff and teachers

Our Principal has over 15 years experiences in Montessori education and is an examiner and frequent guest speaker of the Toronto Montessori Institute.

  • All Head Teachers at Aspen Grove Montessori School are Montessori Certified
  • All teachers are qualified in Montessori education, with the Ontario College of Teachers (OCT) and/or Early Childhood Education (ECE), graduated from esteemed institutions (see below) and have extensive experience in education, with a genuine passion for the Montessori method and philosophy

3

Low student to teacher ratio

Unlike many other private preschools that separate 3 year olds from 4–6 year old children to maximize their classroom ratios, Aspen Grove Montessori School maintains a 1 teacher to 8 student ratio within all Casa classrooms in order to provide quality education and attention to each child’s individual needs.

Low student to teacher ratio provides more attention to each student and allows students to develop leadership skills and independence under close observation and instruction from qualified teachers.

4

Comprehensive Development

We offer an accredited and structured curriculum covering the areas of math, language, practical life, culture and sensorial exploration for our students.

  • Individualized learning plans for each student, catered to each child’s own learning style
  • Raz-Kids subscription for at home reading practice and comprehension development
  • In school Yoga and Gym sessions for physical development
  • French Lessons 4 days per week
  • Optional afterschool programs to spark interest in different areas – e.g. Robotics, Art
  • Field Trips to help bridge education and hands-on experience

5

Privacy protected

Aspen Grove Montessori School enforces a strict no-tolerance photo/video policy for all our students. We respect the privacy of our students and their families and we do not post any photos/videos of children on social media unless specific permission has been granted by parents to the school.

6

Detailed daily progress tracking

We understand that as parents, you want to know everything, both great and small, about your child’s day to day life at school, which is why we utilize a comprehensive reporting software to track the learning progresses and achievements of every student. Subscription to the Raz Kids program assists us in monitoring the reading practice of our students.

7

Commitment to professionalism

Aspen Grove Montessori School’s curriculum is accredited, teachers are qualified, and the school facility is carefully planned and designed. We are committed to professionalism, from snack choices to lesson planning, our team dedicates itself to providing outstanding programming and continual support for each child and their family.

The
Montessori Method

The Montessori Method is an individualized approach to learning developed by Dr. Maria Montessori that allows the child to develop and learn at their own pace through scientifically developed materials and one-on-one, teacher guided lessons. The Montessori Method encourages independent learning through creativity, exploration and inquiry.

1

Structured Curriculum

The five major areas of the Montessori curriculum are: Math, Language, Practical life, Sensorial and Culture. All lessons are individually presented to the child when they are ready and at a level that suits their abilities.

Math

Children develop a strong foundation in Mathematics by using various hands-on materials that help them grasp abstract Mathematical concepts. Children learn to count, recognize numerals, sequence numbers, problem solve, and experience the 4 main operations of addition, subtraction, multiplication and division. Over the course of the 3 year Casa program, students will memorize many numerical facts, count into the 1000’s, complete 4-digit equations and develop a solid understanding of numbers.

Language

Children will expand and enrich their vocabulary and listening skills through the Montessori Language lessons. Students will also gain a deep understanding of the phonetic sounds, which allows them to develop enjoyment of the written word. Being immersed in a language based curriculum for a full 3 year period will give the child the confidence and capacity to compose their own stories, understand grammar and the functions of speech, and read confidently for enjoyment.

Sensorial

Children learn to discriminate and understand the concepts of size, shape, colour, taste and sound through Sensorial lessons, such as sorting, color matching and patterning. All materials are specially designed for children to classify information, develop their problem solving skills and logical thinking, refine their senses and increase awareness of the environment.

Practical life

The exercises of Practical Life lay the foundation of the child’s ability to develop work habits and ethics, and allows the child to begin establishing their role as a student and global citizen. The curriculum is comprised of daily life skills, including basic movements such as pouring, folding and carrying. Emphasis is placed on developing independence, self regulation, respect and perseverance within each child; key elements of the Montessori philosophy.

Culture

The Culture curriculum integrates traditional subjects of geography, history, biology, zoology, botany and science. This area of the curriculum gives the child an understanding of the world around them, their place within it and develops their ability to think globally. The work within the culture curriculum assists students in learning to differentiate between fact and fiction, to ask questions and to maintain a curiosity about the world.

2

Mixed-Aged Classroom

  • Montessori classrooms bring children together in multi-age groups, rather than classes comprised of just one grade level. Doing so promotes leadership skills and the values of compassion, responsibility, empathy and collaboration within the older members of the group, while younger students develop orderly work habits and ethics from their older peers.
  • Grouping different ages together allows for strong motivation and inspires positive behavior and learning. It allows the child to learn from their experiences and the experiences of others and to inherit the class culture from peers of all ages.

3

Purposeful Environment

  • A Montessori classroom is a special environment designed with the interests and needs of the child at the forefront. The materials present within the classrooms are academically based and have a concrete purpose and skill which is developed though their exploration.
  • Classrooms are neat, tidy and organized; a key element to successful learning and the development of work habits and ethics within the child.
  • The materials available in each classroom are designed for the learning and development of each specific age group. Toddlers typically have many Practical Life materials to choose from, as well as the introduction of the multi-sensory Sensorial materials and language materials and develop vocabulary. Casa classrooms will have more advanced lessons prepared for them to challenge and spark the child's interests in all areas of learning.

4

Motivated Learning

  • The Montessori method believes that children are naturally born with an inner directive to meet their own needs and to learn.
  • Our goal as Montessori educators is to embrace this innate drive by providing optimal learning environments for our bright, engaged, and inquisitive students. Regardless of developmental stage, the opportunity to choose one’s own activity, to move and work freely within the environment, and to work for long periods of time without interruption, are fundamental elements of learning within the Montessori classroom.

Principal’s Message

It has been, and will continue to be my goal to help guide each child in reaching their potential in all areas of education, and to assist them in recognizing their own capacity to make a difference in the world.

It is an honour and privilege to introduce myself as the principal of Aspen Grove Montessori School. For over 15 years, I have passionately followed my dream of working in the education field. During the course of my career, I have been fortunate to work as a Casa teacher, a mentor teacher to many new and inspiring teachers, and as an educational consultant with the Toronto Montessori Institute.

For me, Montessori is allowing the child the freedom to choose what drives them; what they desire most to study and pursue, which allows them the opportunity to make a solid connection between learning and the world around them. As Maria Montessori said, “the goal of childhood education should be to activate the child’s own natural desire to learn.”

As principal, my objective is to drive the school, model for its teachers these passions and aspirations, and to instill within them the importance of building strong relationships between children, families and staff. Strong parent-teacher relationships, communication and understanding are paramount to providing a successful, positive, nurturing educational experience for the child.

Sincerely,

Julie Gallagher

Julie Gallagher
  • Over 15 years experience in Montessori Preschool Education
  • Over 10 years experience as a Mentor Teacher
  • Specialized diploma in Early Childhood Education, certificates in Toddler, Elementary and Learning Differences Education from Toronto Montessori Institute
  • Bachelor of Arts in Sociology from York University
  • Member of the Examination Panel at Toronto Montessori Institute
  • Frequent Guest Speaker at Toronto Montessori Institute

FAQs

How does your waitlist work?

We are honored to receive much praised from the community and our waiting list have grown substantially. It’s never too early to sign up on our waitlist so we can do our best to accommodate your needs and welcome you into our school family. There is no fee associated with signing up on our waitlist.

If you are interested in joining our Toddler program, we recommend signing up on our waitlist about 6 months – 1 year prior to anticipated start date.

For Casa program, our intakes will be available in every March/April for the school year to start in September.

How does your intake works?

Step 1. Visiting the School (Schedule a private tour, or visit our open house)

The admissions process is designed to help you learn everything about our school, and at the same time help us become better acquainted with you and your child. This is the perfect opportunity to ask specific questions pertaining to your child.
Our information package, including fee schedule, enrolment checklist, program schedule will be available at the school during your visit.

Step 2. Admission

Admission into our Toddler Program (ages 18 months – 2.5 years) and Casa Program (2.5 years – 6 years) is on a first come first served basis.
Returning and former students, their siblings, have priority over new admissions. An effort is made to balance the enrolment in each class according to gender and age.
Our admission for Casa will be opened to public.
Our Programs fill up quickly so applications will be placed on a wait list in order of their application dates and families will be contacted once an opening occurs.

Step 3. Submit Application

If you think we are the right choice for your child and wish to join our amazing school family, it’s time to submit your application in person!
Application forms must be submitted to the school office with a one-time Application Fee and Enrolment Deposit to confirm the space. We will then walk you through all the school policies and procedures that needed to be signed.

When do you offer private tours?

The ideal time of our school tour are weekdays from 10 am – 11am. It’s the best time to see our school in action when classes are in session as well as avoiding the congestions during drop-off and pick-up time. That being said, we can accommodate other timeslots as well to our best effort.

Does AGMS offer a French program? If so, how often?

AGMS offers a French program 4 days per week for up to one half hour depending on the age group of the children.  Typically, the Toddler classes receive 15-20 minutes of French 4 times per week and the Casa classes receive 30 minutes.

How much outside time is spent outside?

On a typical day, the children spend 2 hours outside, weather permitting.  If weather does not permit outside time (rain, extreme wind, cold or heat), the children will take part in indoor activities within our indoor gym, such as building blocks, aerobic exercise and/or yoga.

Where will my child be at the end of the program?

The answer to this depends on each child and their own natural ability.

In general, the Toddler child will be ready for the Casa program; they have completed or are nearing the end of potty training, they have mastered basic self-help skills, can see an activity through to completion and have a basic understanding of a Montessori classroom routine.  

For the Casa child, the same rule applies; it depends upon the child and his/her own natural ability.  For most Casa children though, they have a solid understanding of language and all four mathematical operations, they are able to compose their own stories and journal entries, have developed basic researching skills, can care for themselves and others in many ways, and possess a solid understanding of community and what it means to be part of a team.

Where will my child go once they graduate from the Casa program?

The natural transition most children make after a Montessori education is into a French Immersion program, but again, this depends on the child; his/her needs and abilities. The French Immersion program offers the Montessori child the challenge they require that conventional school cannot give them.  They are also beginning a new program with other children who may have a Montessori background or have come from other schools and are therefore all starting on common ground, both socially and academically.

Are your staff members qualified?

All staff at AGMS are either RECE, Montessori Certified from a MACTE approved training centre or OCT. Some staff members have a combination of these qualifications. The head teacher in each Casa classroom holds her Montessori certification.

What are the program fees?

Fee schedule is available at the school office.

What happens if we are late picking up?

Please see late policy – For children with a registered drop-off time of 9:00 a.m., may be dropped off any time after 8:50 a.m. A fee of $15 will be charged for children that are dropped off earlier than 8:50 a.m.

For children with a registered pick-up time of 4:00 p.m., a grace period of 15 minutes will be allowed. A late fee of $15 will be charged to the parents if the children are picked up between the time of 4:16 p.m. – 4:30 p.m, with or without notice.

A late fee of $50 will be charged after 4:30 p.m. until 6:00 p.m. when less than 24hrs notice is provided to the school; $40 will be charged if more than 24hrs notice is provided. An additional late pickup fee, according to the 6:00pm pick up policy, will be applied if your child is picked up after 6:00pm.  

For a child with a registered pick-up time of 6:00 p.m., a fee of $10 will be imposed for the first five minutes and $10.00 for each additional five-minute segment, or part thereof; see the following examples:

There is no grace period for pick-up after 6:00 p.m.

Does the school offer part time programs?

AGMS only offers full days program and do not offer any part time program. AGMS is accredited by the CCMA (Canadian Council of Montessori Administrators), and in order to meet their standards and curriculum goals, AGMS does not offer program that consists of less than 5 consecutive days. Children thrive on consistency and routine and it is in their best interest to be enrolled in a consistent program.

What if we want to cancel our enrolment?

AGMS requires at 60 days notice of withdrawal, at which point, no further fees will be collected.

What happens if my child is sick?

Our school policy is to call the parent when the child falls ill, and we require the child to be picked up after 2 bouts of vomiting or diarrhea.  A child with a fever must be sent home.  In either case, the child may not return to school until they have been symptom free for a full 24 hours without the aid of medication.

If my child is ill for a prolonged period, will tuition fees be returned?

Tuition cannot be returned unless you choose to withdraw from the school.

My child isn’t potty trained/completely potty trained. How does this happen and how can I assist in the process? When do we start?

We ask that children entering the Casa program are potty trained, but sometimes forces outside our control make this difficult. Casa teachers will assist the child in being successful in mastering this skill, but can only do so when the parents are on board.  It must be a mutually agreed upon process.  The same can be said of Toddlers beginning potty training.  The class will approach this matter, with dedicated time throughout the day for toileting.

How can I communicate with my child’s teacher?

At AGMS, we pride ourselves on the relationships we build with the parents and children.  Our teachers are available through many means to assist parents, at any time.  Our staff can be reached through email, by telephone and through face-to-face communication at the beginning or end of your child’s day. Each Toddler has a daily journal where the child’s day is detailed (i.e. food eaten, toileting, sleep time, etc.), reminders are posted and questions can be left for the teacher if she is not available at time of pickup. Parent-Teacher interviews are held 3 times per year in an effort to keep parents up to date regarding their child’s progress.  We prefer any concerns are met and dealt with in a timely manner, through face-to-face communication in order to alleviate any further issues. Communication is the key to a successful school-home relationship.

Do the children attend school trips or outings throughout the school year?

School trips are an excellent way to expand upon themes and lessons given within the classroom. Our trips are educational in nature and tend to occur when the weather is agreeable. During the winter months, AGMS invites groups into the school for in-class visits to enhance our curriculum.

What kind of lunch and snacks are offered during the day?

AGMS’s lunch program is catered by Wholesome Kids Catering with menu variations offered on a 4 week rotation.

Details of our sample menu: https://www.aspengrovemontessori.com/programs#food

The safety and wellbeing of the children is our first priority – AGMS takes food restrictions and allergies very seriously. AGMS is a nut-free and allergen free facility and we do not allow outside food to be brought into the school in an effort to eliminate any health and safety hazards to the children.