Who is Maria Montessori?

Maria Montessori was born August 31, 1870, in Chiaravalle, Italy.

Maria was given entry to the University of Rome in 1890 to study medicine. In July 1896, Montessori graduated as a doctor.

In 1901, Dr. Montessori began her own studies of education philosophy and anthropology, lecturing and teaching students. During this time, socioeconomic developments in Rome meant that children were left at home as their parents worked. The number of children needing a guide and role model presented Dr. Montessori with an opportunity to work with children. In 1907, on the Feast of the Epiphany, January 6th, she opened her Casa dei Bambini in Rome.

Dr. Montessori put many different learning materials into the children’s environment but kept only those that engaged them. By 1909, she instructed her first training course in her new approach—the Montessori Method—to around 100 students.

Her training course catapulted into a period of great expansion in the Montessori approach. Montessori societies, training programs and schools sprang into life all over the world. Dr. Montessori received a nomination for a Nobel Peace Prize in 1949. She passed away in 1952.