“The most important period of life is not the age of university studies, but the first one, the period from birth to the age of six. For that is the time when man’s intelligence itself, his greatest implement, is being formed.”
-Dr. Maria Montessori
Dr. Maria Montessori was born in 1870 in Chiaravalle, Italy. She was an educator, physician, and scientist.
From a young age, Dr. Montessori was not afraid to break barriers and expectations of the times. She enrolled in an all-boys technical school because she wanted to become an engineer. She later had a change of heart and began medical school where she went on to become a physician.
Dr. Montessori was asked to start and oversee a childcare center in a poor inner-city district of Rome. The center opened on January 6, 1907 and it was called Casa dei Bambini which in Italian means “Children’s House.” She worked with disadvantaged children and ones that didn’t have any previous schooling.
Dr. Montessori wanted to make sure these children received a quality education, an opportunity they otherwise may not have been given.
Not only did she accomplish that but she discovered through her observations how the children learned. She realized that the children took in knowledge from their surroundings, essentially teaching themselves. She also created an environment that fosters a child’s natural desire to learn.
Dr. Maria Montessori was a woman who dared to reimagine how children learn.