Who was Maria Montessori?

Maria Montessori was born in Italy on the 31st of August, 1870 in a village called Chiaravalle. She became the first woman in Italy to receive a medical degree – this was accomplished in 1896.

Dr. Maria Montessori was on the staff of Orthrophrenic Psychiatric Hospital for “mentally deficient” children. She studied Itard and Sequin, who had researched how people learn. She also studied anthropology, psychology and philosophy.

On January 6th, 1907, she opened her first daycare-center – “the casa dei bambini” in the slums of Rome. She began to put out the material she had previously used when working with mentally handicapped children. Dr. Montessori was astonished to see how these children were intensely attracted by the material, working spontaneously and repeatedly with this material in total concentration.

The Montessori Method of education developed from her experience in the "Casa dei Bambini". Dr. Montessori began to set up training centers in Italy and expanded them all over the world. Her books were translated into many languages.

The headquarters of the Association Montessori International (AMI) is established in Amsterdam, Holland. Dr. Maria Montessori died on the 6th of May in 1952, in Noordwijk aan Zee, Holland.

Maria Montessori

As italian celebrity, Maria Montessori is depicted on the 1'000 Lire bill.