The Montessori approach was created by Dr. Maria Montessori (1870-1952). She worked in children's asylums early in her career and due to her success with these childen she was later chosen to run a school for mentally disabled children in Rome. Dr. Montessori used scientific method to develop a manner to teach her students.

Her school was much like a laboratory for her. She would spend much of her day note-taking on the characteristics of the children and use these notes to develop the materials for her school. Her success didn't stop there, she continued to make improvements to many other schools in Rome and in 1929 she established the Association Montessori Internationale (AMI). This program was created to prepare teachers to carry out her method.

Dr. Montessori died in 1952, but her discoveries regarding the characteristics of children have influenced scientists, educators, and most importantly those students who have had the opportunity to attend Montessori schools.

The Montessori Method/Approach

In the Montessori classroom, education is seen as an aid to life. This teaching approach is designed to help children with their task of inner construction as they grow from childhood to maturity. The materials and teaching are drawn from the natural development of the child. The flexiblility of this method allows for the adaptation to the needs of the individual. Students can work at their own pace and decide when they are ready for the next step in their learning process.

Montessori classrooms provide a prepared environment where children are free to respond to their natural drive to work and learn. The children's inherent love of learning is encouraged by giving them opportunities to engage in spontaneous, meaningful activities under the guidance of a trained adult.

The role of the Montessori teacheris to guide and observe, intervening less and less as the child develops. The teacher's job is to build an atmosphere of calm, order and joy in the classroom and encourage children in their efforts, promoting self-confidence and discipline.

Please browse the links to learn more about the Montessori Approach:

American Montessori Society provides history and membership information, as well as other resourceful links.

Montessori Video-produced by American Montessori Society is an introduction to the Montessori philosophy and method.

Montessori Connections is a resource for Montessori teachers and families to find information, schools, and materials for teaching.

Mathematics-the Montessori Way video
‚Äč goes more indepth into the way that mathematics is learned in the Montessori schools and why it is taught this way.

Language Learning-the Montessori Way video shows the process of teaching language starting from early childhood in Montessori schools