Maria Montessori was born on the 31st of August in Chiaravalle, Italy. She graduated from the medical school of University of Rome in 1896 and was the first woman to practice medicine in Italy. As a physician, Dr. Montessori was very involved with the care of young children. She discovered through scientific observations of young children’s behavior, that they maximize learning in a homelike setting (prepared environment) filled with materials that are self-correcting to facilitate learning. She believed that every child has within him/her the ability to develop their intellectual, emotional and spiritual power to the fullest. The prepared environment will nurture and help him/her attain a sense of order, inner discipline and self-control. The teacher or guide acts as a monitor and guide to encourage individual exploration, discovery, trial, practice and success. The Montessori approach to education continues to be respected and practiced internationally. Maria received a nomination for Nobel Peace Prize in 1949. She died in 1952, in the company of her son Mario, to whom she bequeathed the legacy of her work.
I have studied the child. I have taken what the child has given me and expressed it and that is what is called the Montessori method.
Montessori philosophy is a child-centered approach in education which believes that a child learns best in an environment which supports and respects each individual’s unique development. When the basic physical, emotional and social needs of a young child are consistently, respectfully and joyfully met, the child learns to trust.