Who was Dr. Maria Montessori?

  • Montessori is an approach to early childhood education developed by Dr. Maria Montessori in the early 1900’s in Italy. Dr. Montessori was the first woman to graduate from the University of Rome with a medical degree. She studied philosophy, psychology, and anthropology, and was a professor of anthropology before she fully committed herself to educating children. Dr. Montessori founded the first Casa dei Bambini, or Children House, in 1907. She worked with children of diverse social and cultural backgrounds, and she developed her educational philosophy through close experimentation and observation. By 1909, Dr. Montessori had become a public figure for revolutionizing education. She spent her time lecturing, writing, traveling, and establishing schools and training centers. During her life time, Dr. Montessori was honored with various civic and academic awards. She was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 1949, 1950 and 1951 because of her revolutionary work educating children.

Montessori Educational Approach

  • Maria Montessori educational approach is child-centered, whole child focused, and based on mutual respect and cooperation. She believed that from a very early age children should be provided with an orderly and safe environment where they can freely explore and discover their surroundings. Dr. Montessori recognized that all children are different and develop at different rates, and that they all possess an innate desire and ability to learn and achieve their full potential.Dr Maria Montessori realized that education is not merely something that a teacher does, but rather is a natural process that develops spontaneously in human beings. Children take the most from their classroom experience when they learn in an interactive environment, actively engaging in meaningful activities and relatable materials rather than passively listening to teachers. The role of the teacher is to guide the children through this environment while nurturing self-confidence, self-discipline, and self-reliance within each child.