What is a Montessori School?

Montessori schools have been around for nearly 100 years and have seen amazing success in the development of children. Montessori schools are different from traditional education environments in that they focus on an individualized approach to learning. No child is alike, and therefore the way each child learns should be just as unique as they are. The teacher to child ratio is much smaller in a Montessori school allowing for lessons to be planned individually based on the natural development of each child. Students learn at their own pace and can pursue their own interests and passions within the classroom, rather than being confined to the pre-determined parameters of learning. Each students’ performance is evaluated and celebrated based on their own previous work, rather than the standard or average set by the province. This helps to promote progress and allows students to develop self-confidence in their achievements. Montessori Schools do not rely on motivation-based techniques, or on rewards and discipline; Montessori School students are driven by self-motivation and an internal drive to learn that is fostered by the freedom to be creative and follow their interests within the classroom.

How is a Montessori School different from the traditional education system?

The key differences between a Montessori School and a traditional education environment come down to the individualized learning, the collaboration between teacher and student, and the freedom children feel when in a Montessori classroom. The chart below highlights some of the key differences and benefits to a Montessori education.


Montessori School

Traditional environment

Smaller teacher to child ratio. Teacher to child ration is about 1:20.
Lessons are planned to meet the natural development of each child. Lessons are planned based on the provincial curriculum guidelines.
Students are encouraged to follow their own interests in the classroom. Students are confined to standardized learning from a curriculum set by the province for everyone.
Students are free to learn at their own pace. Each lesson is taught within a predetermined timeline.
Students enjoy an uninterrupted work cycle. Students move from lesson to lesson based on blocked time slots (periods).
Lesson material is made available for all students throughout the school year to allow for repetition and internalization if necessary. Lessons for each grade level are taught during a predetermined period, and three is no opportunity for students to review material taught in a previous term.
Students work in collaboration with their teachers. The classroom is led only by a teacher.
Students enjoy access to specially-designed, self-directed materials to explore and learn independently. Students are taught materials only by their teacher.
The learning environment itself becomes the third teacher in the classroom. Students are taught only by their teacher.


Students are free to roam about the classroom. Students have an assigned desk/ workspace.
Performance is celebrated and evaluated based on each individual child’s previous performance. Performance is celebrated and evaluated based on standards and expectations set by the province.
Montessori Schools have multi-aged classrooms. Single-graded classrooms.
Holistic curriculums. Standardized subject-focused curriculums.
Students are given free personal time after school. Homework is often assigned for after school.


5 reasons why you should send your child to a Montessori School

  1. Because you value independence: Montessori Schools allow each student to practice independence through the freedom of choice within limits. They are able to learn about what interests them, rather than only what they are told they need to learn. Montessori students are encouraged to help themselves and taught to make choices independently and responsibly.
  2. Because you want to encourage confidence: Montessori Schools empower students to achieve their own success which helps spark an internal motivation that drives them to explore new opportunities and conquer new challenges. Montessori Schools do not rely on external motivation as it has proven to have an adverse effect on students.
  3. Because you want to encourage leadership: By fostering a learning environment with multiple age-groups, the older students in the classroom naturally assume roles of mentorship and leadership with the younger students.
  4. Because you want your child to be as prepared as possible: Montessori Schools curriculums cover a broad variety of academic subjects that go well beyond the Provincial curriculum. Students also have the luxury of being in the same classroom for three years, allowing them to re-visit and internalize previous subject matter whenever necessary, helping them to learn at their own pace.
  5. Because you want your child to think critically: A Montessori education provides students with constant opportunities for analyzing and forming their own ideas and opinions through all means of exploration. They are encouraged to decide how to do things independently rather than being told. Gentle challenges are given to students to allow for them to exercise and enhance their critical thinking skills which helps to build a strong foundation for future studies.

8 reasons you should choose Pine Lake Montessori School

Pine Lake Montessori School offers an educational experience unlike any other to families living the in the Toronto area. As a fully-licensed school by the Ministry of Education, we ensure to offer a safe, and quality educational experience.

  1. We promote discipline: The programs at Pine Lake Montessori School are designed to empower each student to practice self-regulation and self-discipline by encouraging consistent self-reflection on their actions. We enforce a process of delayed gratification which further promotes self-discipline in our students.
  2. We believe every child is unique: Pine Lake Montessori believes in student-directed learning. We encourage students to observe their interests and strengths and create individualized lessons around them. This helps empower our students while gently challenging them without overwhelming them. It allows Pine Lake Montessori School to truly foster an environment of spontaneous and joyful exploration and learning.
  3. We believe in global awareness: We may be located in Toronto, but the Pine Lake Montessori School curriculum is based on a cosmic theory around everything in the world being interconnected. Pine Lake students are encouraged to find their place in the world and taught to better understand how their actions have a wider effect on a global level.
  4. We have strong values: Pine Lake Montessori School values the principles of respect. This includes respect for one’s self, respect for others, and respect for the environment. We believe that there is an undeniable correlation between the values of respect, and the feeling of compassion, empathy, kindness, and positivity.
  5. We have Montessori-certified teachers: Each teacher at Pine Lake Montessori School is fully Montessori-certified. Beyond their credentials, our teachers are passionate, loving, and knowledgeable professionals who truly understand the needs of our students. They work actively with both the administration and the students’ parents to ensure each student is achieving their educational goals.
  6. We have superior facilities: Pine Lake Montessori school is nestled in the busy city of Toronto, but fully equipped with an on-site playground, in class kitchen, and full washrooms for the convenience of the children. We also have a full video surveillance system to further enhance the safety of the environment. Our classrooms are warm, welcoming, and home-like with lots of natural light.
  7. We have an extensive in-class library: We want to promote children to engage with reading material that interests them. Our library offers a variety of content for different interests that children can take home as they discover the joy of reading.
  8. We’re there for our students beyond regular school hours: We know how busy the life of a Toronto resident can get, which is why we offer a before and after school program that runs from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. to give parents the flexibility they need with their busy schedules.