The Good Guys – Terra Viva Montessori

Meet the environmental champions in our community.

Check in with us every month as we highlight the work and accomplishments of various organizations and individuals – The Good Guys.

Terra Viva Montessori is a Forest School – the first of its kind in Niagara. It is a unique program, committed to educating children through an innovative and creative way of learning that blends the Montessori Philosophy with an Environmental and Outdoor Education. In Forest School, children spend anywhere from a half day to a full day outdoors in local woodlands and green spaces, in various urban and near-urban parks, natural spaces adjacent to or on school grounds, or natural playgrounds and outdoor classrooms.

Their mission is to give children the opportunity to know their land, to learn about fauna, flora and changes in the season by visiting and observing the natural settings. They hope to plant in our future generations the seeds of love, stewardship and reverence for nature. A sense of responsibility and commitment for the land is instilled in every activity they undertake while taking children into the forests, the meadows, the shore lines of the Niagara Region.

As a community and as a school, Terra Viva feels it is important to acknowledge the land of the native communities who have lived upon it and who have had a physical and spiritual connection with the land before colonization. They feel that land acknowledgments are important for children and for all to reconcile and form a new relationship with all people.

“Forest School” is an educational approach and program of delivery, that has existed since the late 1950s, with thousands of programs expanding the world over, starting in Denmark and Sweden, moving through Scandinavia, onto Europe, China, Australia, New Zealand, the United States and now Canada. Although Forest School is called by many different names (e.g. Nature Kindergarten, Outdoor School, Waldkindergarten, Rain or Shine School, Bush School), in Canada two prominent names are taking hold: Forest School and Nature School .

Moreover, at Terra Viva, they believe that exposing children to a foreign language, such as Spanish,  at an early age, increases children’s cognitive and linguistic skills, helps them prepare for the future, and allows them to  be better capable of making connections with children of different cultural backgrounds. They immerse children into the language through spoken commands, songs, music, art, culture and nature. Children do not need to know the Spanish language prior to registration.

Terra Viva offers classes for toddlers, pre-school, kindergarten and elementary school encompassing ages 18 month to 12 years, starting in September 2022. They also offer summer camps at two locations. For further information, you can visit their website:  or phone  289-9901320.

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