Private Education - Grades 1 to 6

The Montessori elementary curriculum expands and builds on the primary experience and the idea that Montessori materials are "Aids to Life." The idea is that children develop optimally when they are brought up in an environment that supports their natural development, to allow for enough time to grow and develop according to their own pace and rhythm.

Range of Subjects

The elementary curriculum at the Guelph Montessori School offers a rich range of subjects, including:


The rich language development that begins in the primary classrooms is used as the foundation of the elementary language curriculum.

The elementary child enters the classroom as a reader and a writer. The curriculum works to expand these abilities by raising the child's awareness of the rules, patterns and functions of language. This is accomplished by a thorough study of the following topics:

  • grammar
  • sentence analysis
  • word studies (prefixes, suffixes, thesaurus, dictionary, etc.)
  • reading
  • writing

Each child is exposed to a variety of literature and poetry. The study of literature allows the child to discover the elements of style and how it may be incorporated into their own writing. The language curriculum allows the child to "unlock" the mysteries of the English language and to develop a natural interest in reading and writing.


The mathematics curriculum allows the child to explore and discover new concepts through a "hands on" approach. Each concept is presented with materials that allow the child to experience a concept several ways:

  • in visual form
  • in tactile form

The child works with the Montessori material to allow him or her to move towards the process of abstraction. All mathematical concepts are presented in this way, for example:

  • reading numbers
  • fractions
  • squaring of binomials

The Montessori child feels as though math is a puzzle to figure out and approaches Mathematics without hesitation. The child is given the "keys" to unlock the mysteries of the mathematical world.


The Geography curriculum begins by presenting stories of the formation of the universe. These stories are combined with experiments and demonstrations to provide the child with a sense of awe and wonder in the world around them.

Conducting Physical Experiments

The child is provided with the opportunity to conduct experiments to discover the physical laws of the universe such as:

  • gravity
  • inertia
  • fricton

The child is left with the impression that there are rules and order to the universe.

  • reading numbers
  • fractions
  • squaring of binomials

The Montessori child feels as though math is a puzzle to figure out and approaches Mathematics without hesitation. The child is given the "keys" to unlock the mysteries of the mathematical world.

Studying the Earth

The children's study of geography will move from the universe to the earth. A variety of concepts are explored through experimentation and demonstration. The topics covered are as follows:

  • The Movement of the Earth and its Consequences (day/night, time differences, seasons.)
  • The Lithosphere (history of the earth rocks and minerals, composition of the earth's crust, plate tectonics, mountain building)
  • The Atmosphere (characteristics, layers, importance as a protector and insulator, wind, high and low pressure zones)
  • The Hydrosphere (cloud formation, cloud types, the water cycle, types of rain, water currents, erosion, rivers, glaciers.)
  • The Biosphere (vegetation, animals and people in different regions.)
  • Human Geography (interdependencies, producers, consumers, trade, government and common services, import, export.)

Botany & Zoology

The child is presented with a series of games and research questions that allow him or her to gain knowledge about various organisms. Knowledge of each type of animal and plant is expanded through detailed study.

In these detailed studies, each type of plant and animal is analyzed with respect to:

  • characteristics
  • parts
  • function

Taxonomical Classification System

The large knowledge base and experience that the child has acquired is used to introduce the taxonomical classification system. The study of classification proceeds as follows:

  • introduction to the five kingdoms
  • a detailed study of two kingdoms: Kingdom Plantae and Kingdom Animali

Children who have completed this work are able to trace the genealogy of a plant or animal in the same way that botanists and zoologists do today.


The elementary child has already been provided with a rich sensorial experience of geometry through his or her work with materials in the primary classroom. The work is expanded upon in the elementary program. The child learns the proper names of geometric solids and figures, and explores the triangle as the "constructor" or building block for all geometric figures.

Exploring Geometric Concepts

Once the child has acquired knowledge of geometric vocabulary, he or she will explore geometric concepts such as:

  • the point
  • lines
  • angles
  • triangles
  • quadrilaterals
  • polygons
  • circles

Relating Concepts, Working with Materials

The child learns how each concept relates to each other by working with materials that allow him or her to build and experiment with each concept. Each topic is studied in great detail.

The Montessori student will also explore concepts such as congruency, similarity and equivalence, transitivity, area, volume, Pythagorean theorem and Euclid's theorem.


The Montessori Arts curriculum encompasses the following strands: Visual Art, Music, Dance and Drama. The curriculum is designed to develop and enhance a range of skills. Art appreciation, creativity, expression, communication and movement are areas that are focused upon in the Arts curriculum.

Visual Arts

Students are exposed to various styles of art, drawing, sculpting and painting. They learn about famous artists and how their work has influenced our culture. Students explore various are techniques and use these techniques to develop their own works of art.


Music in the Montessori curriculum is intended for appreciation and understanding. Students are exposed to a large repertoire of classical composers. They develop an awareness and appreciation for music and have many opportunities to interpret the emotional context of each piece. The curriculum discusses the basic elements of music by exploring rhythm, beat and tempo.

Dance and Drama

Dance and drama are expressive forms of art that encompass imagination, communication and movement. In the Montessori curriculum students explore the use of gestures and movement by using verbal and non-verbal forms of communication. They develop the necessary skills needed to convey thoughts and feelings to an audience.


Through presentations of dialogues, projects, and short stories, the Elementary program accomplishes four key aims:

  • to introduce the students to French grammar
  • to elaborate on language structures
  • to increase students' vocabulary
  • to improve their oral expression

Students are encouraged to speak in French as much as possible and to participate fully in all activities both oral and written.

Physical Education

The Elementary program focuses on advanced locomotion, manipulation and stability skills through the following activities:

  • cooperative games
  • individual challenges
  • team sports including:
    • volleyball
    • basketball
    • dodge-ball

Students continue to develop their interpersonal skills. Cooperation, fair play, sportsmanship and commitment are emphasized in all venues of sport and activity. Students become more aware of the necessity for an active and healthy lifestyle.


During this 10-week skating program, students will progress through the Skate Canada Skill Levels, learning and improving techniques such as:

  • stops
  • turns
  • jumps
  • spins
  • forward and backward skating

The program is instructed by a Skate Canada Certified Coach and is designed to allow each skater to progress and be evaluated at his or her own pace. Skating is included in the elementary curriculum.


Elementary students take two 10 week "Canadian Red AquaQuest" sets of lessons (12 levels). One session is in the fall; the other is in the spring.

The Teaching Process

The lessons are one hour in length. The children are divided into multi-level groups and taught accordingly with continual evaluation.

Each skill must be seen a minimum of three times by an instructor for it to be checked off as completed. It is possible for children to move through more than one level per session

Evaluation of Students

At the end of the session the aquatic instructors formalize each student's progress in two ways:

  • by completing a written evaluation
  • by distributing badges to those who have completed the necessary requirements
  • Swimming is included in the elementary curriculum.

    About Guelph Montessori School

    Our goal is to maintain an active partnership involving students, teachers, parents, community and staff to develop a love of learning while embracing our diversity and unique talents in a safe, challenging, respectful and supportive environment.

    Meeting the Needs of 6- to 12-year-olds

    Specific characteristics developed to meet the developmental needs of the 6- to 12-year-old include:

    • three-year cycles with the same teacher (ages six to nine and nine to 12), which allows the teacher intimate knowledge of each child
    • group lessons and group work which facilitate broad social development and cooperative learning
    • use of impressionistic charts as a teaching aid, as children's imaginations develop
    • an interrelated curriculum
    • a "going out" program which increases student awareness of their community
    • a continued progression of beautiful Montessori materials, guiding the child from concrete learning to increasing abstraction
    • shared class meetings to develop personal responsibility

    Developing Concentration

    The children have free play or recess for an hour after lunch each day. There is no recess during the morning.

    This system allows three hours of uninterrupted work time which helps to develop concentration, as the children are able to stay at their chosen work activities for extended periods of time.

    A Warm Classroom Environment

    The classroom offers a warm environment for children to learn and develop. They are respected as active participating members and are encouraged to share in the responsibilities of its care.

    Class meetings allow expression of thoughts, ideas, feelings, and discussions involving current events. Montessori graduates feel they can make a difference in the world.