About Maria Montessori (1870-1952)

Dr Maria Montessori was, in many ways, ahead of her time. Born in the town of Chiaravalle, in the province of Ancona, Italy in 1870, she became the first female physician in Italy upon her graduation from medical school in 1896. Shortly afterwards, she was chosen to represent Italy at two different women conferences in Berlin in 1896 and in London in 1900.

With her medical practice and her clinical observations led her to analyse how learners learn, and she concluded that they build themselves from what they find in their environment. Shifting her focus from the body to mind, she returned to the university in 1901, this time to study psychology and philosophy. In 1904, she was made Professor of Anthropology at the University of Rome. From there she founded the first Casa dei Bambini, or Children’s House.Learners teach themselves.

This simple but profound truth inspired Montessori’s lifelong pursuit of educational reform, methodology, psychology, teaching, and educator training all based on her dedication to furthering the self-creating process of the learner.Dr Maria Montessori made her first visit to the United States in 1913, the same year that Alexander Bell and his wife Mabel founded the Montessori Educational Association at their Washington DC, home. Among her other strong American supporters were Thomas Edison and Helen Keller.In 1915, she attracted world attention with her glass house schoolroom exhibit at the Panama Pacific International Exhibition in San Francisco. She also conducted an educator- training course and addressed the annual convention of the National Education Association and the International Kindergarten Union.
The Spanish government invited her open a research institute in 1917. In 1919, she began a series of educator training courses in London. In 1922, she was appointed a government inspector of schools in her native Italy. She then opened the Montessori Training Centre in Laren, Netherlands in 1938 and a founded a series of educator training courses in India in 1939. Later she founded the Montessori Centre in London in 1947.
read more on the Montessori Method followed by the schoolShe was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize three times. What ultimately became the Montessori Method of education developed there, based upon Montessori scientific observations of these learners almost effortless ability to absorb knowledge from their surroundings, as well as their tireless interest in manipulating the learning materials. In her Montessori equipment, every exercise, every method Montessori developed was based on what she observed a learner to learn naturally, by themselves, unassisted by adults.more advice on settling your child in school
 Dr Montessori died in Noordwijk, Holland in 1952, but her work lives on throughout the world. There are Montessori schools in more than 60 countries on six continents around the globe. Today educationalists and philosophers often find inspiration in the life and work of Dr Maria Montessori.There have been many Montessori supporters throughout history who have attended Montessori schools or who have sent their children to Montessori schools. A few being Helen Keller, Alexander Graham Bell, Henry Ford, Mahatma Gandhi, Sigmund Freud, Jean Piaget, Ann Frank, Thomas Edison, Leo Tolstoy, Gabriel Garcia Marquez, Friedrich Hundertwasser, Jacqueline Kennedy, Prince William and Prince Harry, Cher Bono, Bill and Hillary Clinton.
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