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In 1907 in Rome’s inner city, Dr. Maria Montessori, the Italian physician and educator, opened a school called “Casa de Bambini” or children’s house. The school was based on an innovative idea, created after observing hundreds of children: children could teach themselves.

Dr. Montessori discovered that children learn most successfully and joyfully when their inner growth forces are respected and provided for during their human development, and children learn and grow in different stages, each with particular needs and abilities. Young children learn through sensory activities and exploring their environment. Their minds are like sponges, absorbing knowledge of the world around them with ease and eagerness. Older children continue to investigate their surroundings, and have new ways of learning, including reasoning and imagination.

Based on research and observation, Dr. Montessori provided a working method that we carry on today. In specifically prepared environment, children have the freedom to pick and choose their own work. The “work” itself was self-directed learning activities that were specified for overall learning. These different works allowed the child to concentrate for longer periods of time, and absorb complex skills and sophisticated knowledge. They also developed a self-discipline which relieved any need for external authority.

Since then, Dr. Montessori has expanded her method internationally. There are Montessori schools all over the world, all with the task of educating children into becoming responsible, disciplined and respectful individuals.

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