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Dr. Maria Montessori   History of Montessori Education  
  Dr. Maria Montessori, in 1896, was the first woman to receive a medical degree in Italy. She worked in the fields of psychiatry, education and anthropology. She was an acute observer of children. Beginning with the "Casa de Bambini" in 1907 her understanding of the classroom, the materials and training of teachers has greatly impacted the world. Montessori is usually linked to children between the ages of 3 and 6 years but, in fact, the method covers the entire development from birth through young adulthood. Many concepts in our education system are directly taken from her "method."

"Education is an aid to life." Her philosophy has remained true into the 21st CENTURY "It is true we cannot make a genius," Montessori once wrote, "We can only give each individual the chance to fulfill his potential in becoming an independent, secure and balanced human being."

"The child can only develop by means of experience in his environment. We call such experience 'work'."

Habits and skills developed in a Montessori classroom remain for a life time.

Here are a few well-known people who remember their Montessori School connections and consider their experiences there vital.

- Anne Frank's, famous diary was a natural extension of Anne's Montessori elementary school experience.

- Annie Sullivan, Helen Keller's teacher, corresponded with Maria Montessori about teaching methods.

- Alice Waters, the chef of Chez Panisse fame and creator of The Edible Schoolyard project, was a Montessori teacher.

- Julia Child, the cook and writer, who taught Americans to love, prepare and pronounce French dishes, attended Montessori school.

- Peter Drucher, the business guru, who has been said to be one of the most important thinkers of the 20th century, was a Montessori student.

- Larry Page and Sergei Brin, founders of Google, Jeff Bezos founder of Amazon, and Steve Case of America Online all credit Montessori schooling to their creative success.

Montessori schools are focused on helping children become self-directed individuals, who can, and do, make a difference in their families, in their communities and in their world.


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