The Montessori movement takes its name from its founder, Dr Maria Montessori (1870-1952) who began the first 'casa dei bambini' or children's home in Rome in 1907. Today Montessori is the single largest educational philosophy in the world with 22,000 Montessori schools in more than 100 countries on six continents.
Dr Montessori has been described as an educator, scientist, physician, philosopher, feminist and humanitarian, and was the first early childhood educator to be nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize.
Dr Montessori felt strongly that a radical reform of education was essential if there was to be any hope for peace in our time. She intended that children be placed at the centre of society to enable all children to become caring, self motivated and fulfilled individuals, able to create a harmonious and peaceful future for humanity.
Over 100 years of Montessori reveals that this approach to children is relevant for today's future generations.
It is not true," says Dr. Montessori, "that I invented what is called the Montessori Method. I have studied the child, I have taken what the child has given me and expressed it, and that is what is called the Montessori Method."