Calgary Montessori Schools

What is the Montessori method?

A physician and educator, Dr. Maria Montessori determined that children have an inner drive for their own self-directed development. The role of the teacher (called a "guide") is therefore to watch over the environment and to provide supports and remove any obstacles that would interfere with this natural development. The guide's role includes ongoing observation of the children, as a method of determining each child's needs, and the delivery of Montessori lessons which show how to use the various self-teaching materials that are provided in the environment for the children's use.

A 2006 study published in the journal Science concluded that Montessori students (at ages 5 and 12) performed better than control groups of students who had lost a random computerized lottery to attend a Montessori school and instead went to a variety of different conventional schools.

Although the Montessori name is recognized by many, it is not a trademark, and it is associated with more than one organization. Schools differ in their interpretation, practical application, and philosophy in using the method.

What Montessori Schools are available in Calgary?

Maria Montessori Education Cetre (MMEC) provides a thoughtfully prepared environment, designed to promote physical, academic, and interpersonal development. In MMEC's mixed-age classrooms, children work at their own pace, collaborating in small groups lead by their guides.

Children learn best by using all their senses, not just by listening. The carefully-designed Montessori materials support children's need to feel, smell, manipulate, and hear. Traditional education divides up learning into arbitrary categories, but the Montessori curriculum is a deeply interconnected one. Montesssori children focus on integrated patterns of knowledge. MMEC students learn, not a laundry list of quickly-outdated facts, but the skills necessary to learn whatever they need to know.

MMEC's school location in Calgary.

MMEC's building, playground & parking.

Maria Montessori Education Center has operated in Calgary since its founding in 2007. MMEC rented school space for 10 years, until 2016 when they purchased a permanent home, and are now located at Chief Crowfoot School in St. Andrew's Heights.

Pertinent to COVID-19, MMEC's Chief Crowfoot School has non-recirculating HVAC (Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning). Only fresh outdoor air is introduced into classrooms, rather than recirculated air from any other part of the school.

Maria Montessori Education Centre provides an authentic, accredited, low tuition, Montessori community for Calgary's children and their families. We are dedicated to nurturing and respecting each child as unique and valuable individuals as they develop skills that will enable them to become self-confident, caring citizens of the world.

"To the young child we give guides to the world and the possibility to explore it through free activity; to the older child we give the cosmos, and a clear vision of how the cosmic energies act in the creation and maintenance of our globe." -Dr. Maria Montessori

Through Montessori philosophy, students are encouraged to reach their highest potential academically, emotionally, and morally as they grow in respect for themselves, others, and our Earth.

MMEC also runs a satalite program for children aged 19 months to 6 years old in cSPACE King Edward in Marda Loop.

For more information on MMEC, visit

Calgary Montessori School (CMS) is the longest continuously operating Montessori School in North America (1919 to present). It has preschool programs for 3, 4 and 5 year olds, offering:

* Full Montessori curriculum

* Montessori certified teachers

* Introduction to a 2nd language

* 3 or 5 half day classes

An Elementary Program is offered for grades 1 through 6.

For more information, visit Calgary Montessori School's website.

For over 30 years, Montessori School of Calgary (MSofC) has offered a holistic approach to education with proven academic success.

Located in the heart of Calgary in the historic Cliff Bungalow School Building, MSofC offers programs for children aged 3-12 years of age spanning preschool to Grade 6 accredited Montessori (AMI) and Alberta Education curricula.

As of 2020-07-13, MSofC has temporarily suspended intake and enrollment into the upper elementary program.

CBE Montessori (alternative program, grade 1 - 6): Killarney, Captain John Palliser, Lake Bonavista

The Calgary Board of Education approved the Montessori Alternative Program, which commenced in September 2000.

Calgary Board of Education's Montessori program:

  • Well equipped classrooms with authentic Montessori materials

  • Carefully prepared classrooms balancing student choice with structure

  • Learning materials and activities that move from concrete to abstract

  • Large blocks of uninterrupted learning time

  • Small group lessons and independent work choices that personalize student learning

A teacher with both an Alberta teaching certificate and training from an accredited Montessori teacher training body guides the students in individual and group learning experiences.

CBE has partnered with Montessori Casa to enable 5 and 6 year olds to extend their studies and discoveries through a full day. Full day kindergarten children may register for lunch supervision provided by Montessori Casa (additional fee). Out of School Care program available for grades K – 5 attending Killarney or Lake Bonavista Public Montessori schools.

Mosaic is committed to providing CCMA accredited authentic Montessori education to Calgary families.

Montessori daycare is now (2020) located in Parkdale, replacing their Beddington and Royal Oak campuses.

“I believe that the teacher, parents, and child all work together to provide an enriched learning environment. Our classrooms will utilize the Montessori method at every opportunity to influence, guide, and nurture the intellectual and emotional development of our students.”
- Mrs. Shefun Jiwani Ali, founder and Head Directress of Mosaic Montessori Academy

Mosaic's new Parkdale campus: 3512 –5 Ave NW, Calgary, T2N 0V7

Montessori Learning Centre (2 - 6 years & adult training)

Montessori Learning Centre (MLC) is an Early Childhood Development Centre offering Preschool, Kindergarten both part time and full time options. MLC also offers adult education for parents and early childhood educators.

MLC aims develop the ‘whole child’. This refers to the growth in all aspects of the child including: social, emotional, literacy, intellectual, cognitive, physical.

Prior to registration, MLC aims to assess the needs of the child. Similarly, it is important parents appreciate MLC's programs offered, to ensure MLC is the right fit for what parents are looking for.

“We teach because the children want to learn and not because we want them to learn.”
- M
LC Motto

#115 20 Country Hills Landing NW, Calgary, T3K 5P4

Montessori Alberta (3 - 6 years)

Montessori Alberta offers two half-day sessions and an accredited full-day kindergarten program running from September to June. MA is located in the spacious lower level of St. Barnabas Anglican Church in Hillhurst-Sunnyside.

An elevator provides wheelchair accessibility. Beside the church is a student garden.

1407 - 7th Ave NW, Calgary, T2N 0Z3

"My goal is to promote our campuses but to promote the wonderfully intriguing Montessori philosophy. It is important to us to educate people that convenience is not necessarily why a facility should be chosen, Montessori programs can vary greatly especially in standards, materials and overall knowledge of the philosophy.​ We want the parents to have the opportunity to explore and discover what they feel would best for their child."
- Shelley Debaar, Calgary's Head Directress of MCHA

Montessori Children’s House Academy was established in October 1998 as an organization with the goal of meeting the growing needs for an authentic Montessori Casa. ​ MCHA has since included Music, French and Spanish.

For more information, visit MCHA's website.

Additional Notes on Montessori Schools in Calgary

In 2016 River Valley School discontinued their Montessori programming.

River Valley School now offers The Arrowsmith Program, a scientific program designed to help students overcome learning challenges, focusing on neuroplasticity.

"How we teach them is determined by who they are, how they learn, and what engages them. There are opportunities to take risks and, regardless of success or failure, children understand that the learning is the most important."