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Maria Montessori

Maria Montessori (August 31, 1870 - May 6, 1952) has been variously described as an educator, scientist, physician, philosopher, feminist, and humanitarian.

Table of contents
1 Life
2 Pedagogy
3 External Links


She was born in Chiaravalle, Italy. Montessori was the first female Italian physician in the modern era. As such, she was given a "menial" task: to try to educate the "idiots" and the "uneducable" in Rome. She opened her first school, in Rome, on January 6, 1907.

The Montessori Method of education that she derived from this experience has subsequently been applied successfully to all children and is quite popular in many parts of the world. Despite much criticism of her method in the early 1930s-1940s her method of education has been applied and has undergone a revival.

By 1907 Montessori had established the first Casa dei Bambini, or Children's House, in Rome. By 1913, there was an intense interest in her method in North America, which later waned. (Nancy McCormick Rambusch revived the method in America by establishing the American Montessori Society in 1960.) Montessori was exiled by Mussolini to India for the duration of World War II, mostly because she refused to compromise her principles and make the children into little soldiers. Montessori lived out the remainder of her life in the Netherlands, which is now the headquarters of the AMI, or Association Montessori Internationale. She died in Noordwijk aan Zee. Her son Mario headed the A.M.I. until his death in 1982.


Aside from a new pedagogy, among the premier contributions to educational thought by Montessori are:

External Links