WHAT IS MONTESSORI ?
WHERE AND HOW DID MONTESSORI BEGIN?
The Montessori educational method was developed by Maria Montessori who was born in Chiaravalle, Italy, on August the 31st, 1870. In 1896 she was the first woman to graduate in Medicine from the University of Rome with a double degree as a doctor of medicine and surgery. In 1899 she began a study of handicapped children. Working on lines first laid down by the French physician E. Seguin, she achieved startling results and the children under her tutelage passed the state examination in reading and writing for normal children. Her first school was opened in 1907 and she published her first book on "The Montessori Method" in 1909. Her work has spread throughout the world and there are thousands of schools across the globe.
Dr. Montessori believed no human being is educated by another person - he must do it himself or it will never be done. A child is born with a natural desire to learn, a natural curiosity and a desire for knowledge.The basic premise of the Montessori philosophy of education is that all children carry within themselves the person they will become. The Montessori classroom provides the environment and materials that the child needs for his personal development, while allowing him the freedom to choose activities, according to his periods of interest and readiness (sensitive periods), in a non-competitive environment. Every child passes through sensitive periods for learning from birth to age seven.
“To assist a child we must provide him with an environment which will enable him to develop freely. This means that there must be a suitable environment for the child’s growth. Obstacles must be reduced to a minimum and the surroundings should provide the necessary means for the exercises of those activities which develop a child’s energies. Since adults are also a part of a child’s environment, they should adapt themselves to his needs. They should not be an obstacle to a child’s independent activities, nor should they carry out for him those activities by means of which a child reaches maturity”.
Maria Montessori – The secret of childhood.