About the Diploma

The Diploma is administered by the Aperfield Montessori Trust.

This course is approved by the New Zealand Qualifications Authority under the provisions of the Education Act 1989, and the Aperfield Montessori Trust is accredited to teach it.

Author Binda Goldsbrough, M.B.E: Books 1 – 4

The Module – Ministerial Requirements & Expectations are compiled by Norah Fryer & Roberta Kempthorne.

Eligibility to Enroll
The diploma is open only to students who:

  • Are citizens of New Zealand or Australia or are NZ or Australian permanent residents.
  • Are 18 years and over.
  • Have a pass in Sixth Form Certificate English or minimum achievement of Level 5; NCEA Level 2 minimum “achieved” or a pass in a piece of preliminary written work, as set by the Aperfield Trust.
  • For the safety of children and teachers, new students to the Early Childhood Education profession, enrolling in the Montessori diploma are required to undergo the police vetting procedure.

Additional Enrolment Criteria:

The applicant supplies:

  • 2 referees’ contact details (only one from your current preschool)
  • A cover letter outlining why you wish to study the Montessori Method via the Aperfield Montessori Diploma, stating your commitment to the philosophy and possible outcomes when you complete the diploma i.e. what you intend to do once completed the qualification

The applicant must:

  • Work in a Montessori preschool either in either paid or voluntary work
  • Be prepared to attend the practical workshop; an 11 day full time block course held every 2 years in Wellington
  • Ideally not be concurrently studying the ECE degree upgrade or any other qualification at the same time as the Aperfield Montessori Diploma

Applicants who have already completed a tertiary qualification which is satisfactory to the Trust (e.g. diploma or degree ECE) may have direct entry to the diploma if they meet the other criteria.

Covers the First Stage of Development, 0 – 6 years, expanding in detail on activities for children 3 – 6 years.

Designed as a Self Study (Distance) Course, it is presented in four Montessori textbooks for the curriculum areas and six booklets for the Ministerial Module.

Book 1: Basic Theory, Practical Life and Sensorial Activities.
Book 2: English Language, Mãori Language , Mathematics.
Book 3: Environmental Studies.
Book 4: The Arts, Special Needs, Class Management.

Students may only enroll in one book at a time and these must be studied in sequence.

The Module : Ministerial Requirements & Expectations.

Distance learning up to 4.5 years (1200 hours). Directed Distance up to 2.5 years (1200 hrs)


  • Study from the text in each book and other books as recommended.
  • Exercises interspersed throughout the text.
  • Assignments (essays, observations etc.) At the end of each subject area.
  • Supervised practice with the apparatus.
  • Practical and written tests.

Educational Coordinator, Administrator, Executive Officer and Treasurer oversee the total course. Tutors (experienced Montessori Teachers) mark assignments and generally assist students.

Students satisfactorily performing all the requirements will be awarded an Aperfield Montessori Diploma in Early Childhood Education.