linksIn 1896, Dr. Maria Montessori became the first female physician in Italy.  She soon shifted her focus from her medical practice to her desire to understand children and their learning process.  Dr. Montessori opened a child care center for the children of working parents in Rome, Italy in the early 1900s and developed her teaching philosophy based on scientific observations of children’s behavior.  She discovered that children have a profound ability and desire to teach themselves and she believed that children learn at their own pace.  Dr. Montessori also believed learning experiences should not be overly structured, but should occur naturally and spontaneously for each child.

The Montessori Method is based on the education of the whole person to become a self-motivated, independent, and life-long learner.  Dr. Montessori’s method focuses on all areas of growth and development and provides a social environment where children learn from hands-on experiences and explorations.  When Dr. Montessori first designed her teaching materials, the concept of self-correction was very important to her. This self-correcting feature enables each child to develop independence, as well as fosters the child’s ability to progress at the pace that is unique and perfect for her.

In a Montessori school, children are encouraged to seek answers to their questions, to follow their interests, and to develop to their fullest potential.  They are provided with hands-on materials that enable them to learn math, language, science, geography and music, while at the same time, developing intellectual curiosity, self-respect, and respect for the world around them. The curriculum serves to answer each child’s needs, rather than bind the him or her to a rigid schedule, while the vast scope of a Montessori education provides an exceptional foundation for academic success.

In Montessori schools, children engage in self-directed, self-initiated activities under the guidance of a trained Montessori teacher.  Each child is personally guided and recognized by staff as a unique individual.  Teachers observe each child’s growth and behavior to determine when to introduce new activities and materials.  Children are motivated to learn and to excel, and consequently are empowered by feelings of intrinsic satisfaction and self-confidence.

For additional information on Montessori education, please use the links on this page.