Maria Montessori, the Italian educator and physician was the very first woman who took a medical degree. She was the one who took initiative and brought the trend of Montessori Method of education for children. Her self-confidence, optimistic nature and the way she was concerned in changes made a great place of her in people’s hearts.
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On August 31, 1870 Maria Montessori was born in a town of Chiarvalle near Ancona. Since, education was not very common that time, She was the only one who took birth in a middle class family that was devotedly Catholic and well-educated. As a student, she learned and passed her exams with good marks.
She graduated from a medical school and became one of the first female doctors. Her experienced stages in the chase of this degree strengthened her well-developed ideas more. Throughout her life she did not leave taking part in international feminist events. After she gave a lecture about the training of the disabled at the Educational Congress in Toronto, the Minister of education Italy got impressed and appointed Maria for the position of director of an institute “Scuola Ortofrenica”. This institute was for educating and taking care of people who had mental disabilities. Appointing her as a director was proved to be a miracle. Her efforts made an eight years old student to not even apply but also passed the State examinations for reading and writing both. This achievement of making defective children get passed was declared as “the first Montessori miracle”.
On 6th January 1907, her passion and strong desire for helping children made her to start a school in apartments building with sixty young children of working parents in the poor San Lorenzo district of Rome. This school “Casa dei Bambini” then became the Montessori Method of education, which was actually based upon Montessori’s scientific observations of the children’s almost effortless ability to absorb knowledge from their surroundings, as well as unwearied interest in managing materials.
In 1917, Maria Montessori visited the United States for executing her concept of Montessori Method and in the same year, in Washington D.C Alexander Graham Bell and his wife founded the Montessori Educational Association. For the same purpose she visited Spain and lived there until 1936 she then also went to the Netherlands until 1939. In 1952, Maria Montessori died in the Netherlands and left her work alive as she established organizations.
Maria Montessori’s goal was to build the whole personality of the child, and her system relies upon a strong belief in the spontaneous working of intellect of the human. The three primary principles of Maria Montessori that are observation, individual liberty, and preparation of the environment and their various practical expressions with children are increasingly becoming part of our educational system.
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