Today on Montessori’s birthday – we recall a force for good, where children can and do interact with their environment. Was this the birth of environmental education – NAEEUK?
Maria Montessori (August 31, 1870 – May 6, 1952) was an Italian physician and educator, a noted humanitarian and devout Catholic best known for the philosophy of education that bears her name. Her educational method is in use today in public and private schools throughout the world.
In this first classroom, Montessori observed behaviors in these young children which formed the foundation of her educational method. She noted episodes of deep attention and concentration, multiple repetitions of activity, and a sensitivity to order in the environment. Given free choice of activity, the children showed more interest in practical activities and Montessori’s materials than in toys provided for them, and were surprisingly unmotivated by sweets and other rewards. Over time, she saw a spontaneous self-discipline emerge.
Based on her observations, Montessori implemented a number of practices that became hallmarks of her educational philosophy and method. She replaced the heavy furniture with child-sized tables and chairs light enough for the children to move, and placed child-sized materials on low, accessible shelves. She expanded the range of practical activities such as sweeping and personal care to include a wide variety of exercises for care of the environment and the self, including flower arranging, hand washing, gymnastics, care of pets, and cooking. She continued to adapt and refine the materials she had developed earlier, altering or removing exercises which were chosen less frequently by the children. Also based on her observations, Montessori experimented with allowing children free choice of the materials, uninterrupted work, and freedom of movement and activity within the limits set by the environment. She began to see independence as the aim of education, and the role of the teacher as an observer and director of children’s innate psychological development.
- Bringing up baby, the Montessori way (independent.co.uk)
- Google doodles Maria Montessori’s 142nd birthday (ibnlive.in.com)
- Who was Maria Montessori? (ibnlive.in.com)
- Google honors educator Maria Montessori’s 142nd birthday with doodle (panarmenian.net)
- Maria Montessori: Celebrating the Life of an Innovative Educator (montessori21stcentury.wordpress.com)
- Maria Montessori, the Italian physician and educator, gets Google Doodle (siliconrepublic.com)
- Are Montessori children exceptional? (howwemontessori.com)
- Montessori Practical Life Activity – Peeling a Banana (mumsibles.wordpress.com)
- Apple features Montessori Numbers as New and Noteworthy (themactrack.com)
- Montessori Monday (thesproutandthebean.typepad.com)