The Montessori Method is a child-centered eduction approach that recognizes the child as naturally eager for knowledge and capable of initiating learning when provided with a supportive, thoughtfully prepared environment and sequential, hands-on learning materials. It is an approach that values the human spirit and the development of the child as a whole.
Montessori education dates back to 1907, when Dr. Maria Montessori, one of Italy's first female physicians, opened a child-care center in Rome. Drawing on her previous work experiences, including scientific observations of young children, Dr. Montessori designed a unique learning environment and materials that fostered the students' natural desire to learn. They made gains that exceeded all expectations.
Montessori offers an education for life – and with that come the skills needed to succeed in our ever changing global society. It is no coincidence that many of the mavericks on the leading edge of creativity and innovation in our culture are Montessori graduates. To the millions of Montessori students, families and supporters around the world, the answer is obvious.
The basic idea in the Montessori philosophy of education is that every child carries unseen within him the man he will become. In order to develop his physical, intellectual, and spiritual powers to the fullest, he must have freedom – a freedom to be achieved through order and self-discipline. The world of the child is full of sights and sounds, which at first appear chaotic. From this chaos, the child must gradually create order, and learn to distinguish among the impressions that assail his senses, slowly but surely gaining mastery of himself and his environment.
There is something about the Montessori approach that nurtures creativity and inventiveness that we can all learn from. Your child's future might be much brighter with a little less conditioning to perform well on tests and more encouragement to discove. The Montessori educational approach might be the surest route to joining the creative elite, which are so overrepresented by the school’s alumni that one might suspect a Montessori Mafia.