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Our Story

Our Montessori journey started in 1988 when founders Mariko Maeda and Pete Juds met while studying for their AMI teaching diplomas at the Maria Montessori Institute in London.

In 1991, Pete joined Mariko in Tokyo, where they both worked in international schools. Pete and Mariko went on to found two separate Montessori schools (Sunshine Montessori School in 1993 and Little People Montessori School in 1997) while also starting a family of their own. By 2003, Mariko went on to join Pete in establishing The Montessori School of Tokyo (MST) which was the first school in Japan to provide Montessori education for elementary students.

Since stepping down as Head of School at MST in 2020, Pete has undertaken specialised training to become an AMI trainer of Montessori administrators. He has attended and delivered training courses through training centres based in the Czech Republic, Mexico, Australia, Thailand, South Africa and Switzerland. During this time, both Mariko and Pete continued working and advising at MST. Mariko applied herself to expanding her knowledge across the various levels of development from birth to 18, as well as Montessori approaches for the care of aged populations. She also nurtured the seed of an idea, one that grew into the vision to start her own small classroom - a space upholding authentic Montessori practices where children could flourish and thrive.

Drawing on over 20 years of collective classroom experience and more than a decade of administrative experience, Mariko and Pete have created a dedicated, cozy, one-classroom school for children 3 to 6 years old. Here every child is recognised and valued for their individuality while growing self-awareness and a deep sense of belonging within the school community.

Our Approach

Welcome to Dandelion Montessori, where we believe that learning should be a joyful and fulfilling experience for every child. Enrolling students from 3 to 6 years old, our school offers a hands-on and nurturing approach to learning that encourages children to explore and develop their unique abilities, and inspires them to become curious, lifelong learners.

Our Montessori programme is designed to meet the unique needs and interests of each child, providing a personalised learning experience that fosters independence, resilience, creativity, and a love of learning. In our multi-aged classroom, children are able to learn at their own pace and in a way that is meaningful to them. Our experienced and AMI trained guides provide guidance and support, allowing the children to direct their own learning and make their own discoveries.


Imagine your child as an adult, having found their own unique place in society, actively participating in life, and caring for others and the world they live in. How can we assist in setting children on this path towards being joyous and productive members of society? We start small. When children understand their place in their own community (the family and the classroom), they begin to feel a part of the world and develop a sense of belonging, empathy and purpose, which will stay with them as they grow and develop.


The early years (three to six) are a time to bring the world to the child in the classroom, to instil in the child a sense of joy, wonder and awe for the world - their home.

At Dandelion Montessori School, we support your child to learn at their own pace while also guiding them to live together harmoniously in our small community. Your child will come to know themselves, their needs, and the needs of others. Children in our small community work, eat, explore and care for our environment together with their friends in a comfortable, nurturing setting, specifically designed to meet their age-appropriate developmental needs.

Choosing the right school for your child is an important decision – we invite you to visit the school and see for yourself the benefits of a Montessori education. At Dandelion Montessori School we are dedicated to providing a supportive and stimulating environment where each child can thrive.

​Thank you for considering Dandelion Montessori School for your child's education. We look forward to welcoming your family for a visit.

Our Team


Sara Scarf

Classroom Guide


Gaeid Sengco

Classroom Guide


Mariko Maeda

School Director


Pete Juds


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