Montessori Pedagogy

OMS Montessori is one of the three accredited Montessori school in Ottawa region by the Canadian Council of Montessori Administrators.

OMS Montessori is a not-for-profit private school offering an authentic Montessori education in the nation’s capital. An OMS education is grounded in creating the conditions for students to be in a state of flow or focused engagement while they are learning academic and life skills. The classrooms are set up for students to learn primarily through activities rather than through a lecture or demonstration. Our controlled environment helps children reach their goals at their own pace while preserving children’s natural joy in learning, whether they are working, playing, studying or exploring.

In Montessori, the adults’ role is to guide the student’s education by demonstrating the use of the materials and activities, and by being available to the individual student as a resource and mentor. The student receives lessons from the adult but chooses which activities to do. The adult is free to interact with students individually – by offering help, working side by side, or giving a presentation on a new activity; or the adult can step back and observe how each student is progressing, and plan what to introduce next. The adults guide the student’s learning through presentations and provide individual support, guidance and direction according to each student’s needs.
Since the Montessori curriculum follows the innate development of the child, it is the same throughout the world – the same materials everywhere with a few cultural differences. The curriculum and class setup for each age is responsive to that particular age range, with the tendencies that are specific to that age.

While each program is responsive to the age it serves, all programs have the following characteristics in order to maximize the Montessori experience:

Why Choose a CCMA accredited school

The Canadian Council of Montessori Administrators (CCMA) “provides mutual support and services to its members and acts as a unified voice to organizations and agencies.” All members must be accredited by the organization. This involves an in depth review of all policies and procedures, a self-evaluation, and an on-site visit of each class by two consultants.  The re-accreditation process is repeated every 5 years.

Montessori Pedagogy

Focused engagement

A student in a state of focused engagement is very concentrated, content, and energized rather than tired by the activity. He or she also experiences a strong sense of wellbeing. Because the activities available in a Montessori classroom match the characteristics of each appropriate age, the students work for themselves rather than for the adults. They feel good about themselves and their accomplishments, get along well with one another, and are easily guided by their teachers.

Students learn through what they do

A Montessori classroom is set up with a series of sequenced materials and activities that cover all the curricular areas appropriate for the ages it serves. The adult introduces each activity to an individual student or to a small group by demonstrating its use. Then the students take over. The adult assesses the students’ understanding and progress by observing the activity, and then plans which presentation to give next to the specific students.

Mixed Age Community

A Montessori classroom is set up for a mixed age group of students who share similar characteristics. Students in a Montessori class naturally learn to get along with those older and younger than themselves, with those who know more or are better at certain things and with those who know less. Having a three-year age span in a class means that students spend three years with the same teacher in the same class culture. Their teacher gets to know them very well. For the adult, only one third of the class is new each year and the older, more experienced students act as mentors and teachers to the newer students. In a Montessori class, students learn to both give and receive help from their peers.

Three-hour work periods

If students are always being interrupted for various group activities, they will not learn to engage for long periods in the more advanced activities. Dr. Montessori graphed the levels of concentration she observed in her classrooms and found that the most intense concentration came towards the end of a three-hour work period. During the three-hour work period students choose or are directed towards activities; they pause to chat with friends, read a book or have a snack, and they are given lessons. Students can take a break, interrupting themselves, but the adults try not to interrupt their focused concentration