How Did Maria Montessori Contribution To Education?
Birth of a Movement – Maria’s early medical practice focused on psychiatry. She later developed an interest in education, attending classes on pedagogy and immersing herself in educational theory. Her studies led her to observe, and call into question, the prevailing methods of teaching children with intellectual and developmental disabilities.
The opportunity to improve on these methods came in 1900, when she was appointed co-director of a new training institute for special education teachers. Maria approached the task scientifically, carefully observing and experimenting to learn which teaching methods worked best. Many of the children made unexpected gains, and the program was proclaimed a success.
In 1907, Maria accepted a challenge to open a full-day childcare center in San Lorenzo, a poor inner-city district of Rome. The students were under-served youngsters, ages 3 – 7, who were left to their own devices while their parents went out to work.
This center, the first of its kind in the nation, and a high-quality learning environment, became the first Casa dei Bambini. The children were unruly at first, but soon showed great interest in working with puzzles, learning to prepare meals, and manipulating learning materials Maria had designed. She observed how the children absorbed knowledge from their surroundings, essentially teaching themselves.
Using scientific observation and experience gained from her earlier work with young children, Maria designed learning materials and a classroom environment that fostered the children’s natural desire to learn and provided freedom for them to choose their own materials.
- To the surprise of many, the children in Maria’s programs thrived, exhibiting concentration, attention, and spontaneous self-discipline.
- The “Montessori Method” began to attract the attention of prominent educators, journalists, and public figures.
- By 1910, Montessori schools could be found throughout Western Europe and were being established around the world, including in the United States where the first Montessori school opened in Tarrytown, NY, in 1911.
: Who Was Maria Montessori?
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- 0.1 What are the contributions in education of Maria Montessori?
- 0.2 montessori philosophy of education | theory | biography
- 0.3 How did Maria Montessori develop her theories of education?
- 0.4 What impact did Maria Montessori theory have on the world?
- 0.5 How does the Montessori method contributes to a child’s cognitive development?
- 0.6 What is the Montessori approach to early childhood education?
- 0.7 What is the Montessori way of learning?
- 1 What is the influence of Montessori on educational practices today?
- 2 Is Montessori education effective?
What are the contributions in education of Maria Montessori?
Maria Montessori Maria Montessori Personal Biography: Maria Montessori was claimed to be the apostle of “self-discovery.” She was born in 1870 in Ancona, Italy and died while in the Netherlands at the age of eighty-one. Her parents were educated middle class people.
- She was Italy’s first woman doctor.
- Montessori worked initially in a psychiatric clinic with mentally challenged children.
- She gave brain-damaged children ‘active’ tasks, developing motor movement.” Montessori was a controversial figure in education during her life.
- Her research, and the studies that were conducted because of her research, helped change the course of education.
Italy was one of the most conservative countries in the world at that time in its attitude toward women. She pursued a scientific education and graduated with highest honors from medical school at the age of twenty-four. As a physician, Montessori specialized in pediatrics and psychiatry.
She had one child out of wedlock, Mario Montessori. Montessori’s first experience with children occurred while she taught at the medical school of the University of Rome. This experience contributed to her life long work with children. She worked in free clinics offered by the university. This is where she came in contact with children.
montessori philosophy of education | theory | biography
The children were from the poor working class and slums of Rome. After working in the clinics, she was assigned to direct the psychiatric clinic at the University of Rome. These children had no stimulation. She required that the staff talk to them and help them learn to care for themselves.
- From these experiences, she concluded that children come into this world with the capacity to learn.
- Their environment and involvement in it, either fosters or stifles their intellectual and social growth.
- Personal Philosophical/Educational School of Thought: Montessori took the idea of a scientific approach to education with humanistic ideals, based on observation and experiments.
She used her past experiences and experimented further with children. She provided organized safe places where children could learn by doing. She opened a day-care center known as “Children’s House,” where children from the inner-city (slums of Rome) could come while their parents worked.
- The staff had to meet the basic needs of the children such as medicine, meals, and baths.
- They enjoyed doing their jobs or work and learned quickly.
- The results of applying her theories (using manipulative learning materials, individualized instruction, real-life experiences, and learning games to help children) far exceed expectations.
The children learned quickly by using materials that Montessori had designed, along with learning to care for themselves and the younger children. They were encouraged to rely on self-motivation. The teacher helped only when the child really needed help.
Montessori also concluded that children learned best when given the correct setting and opportunity. She developed child-size settings (furniture, silverware, dishes, etc.) in her Children’s Houses. The children responded positively to a calm, orderly atmosphere with consistent routines. They flourished academically and socially.
Montessori’s philosophical and educational school of thought was very different of others in her time. She believed that learning should be accomplished through problem solving, cooperation, and that teachers were to be guides. Her philosophy is very closely aligned with the Pragmatist/Progressive (must experience to learn, learning is transaction between learner and environment, active play) philosophy.
- John Dewy taught that people learn well through active interplay and that learning increases when people are engaged in activities that have meaning.
- Montessori believed that education should be child-centered allowing freedom of movement and allowing participation in activities designed to foster growth.
Publications: Montessori carried out much research in her life. She wrote about her research and experimentation in many books. Her first book was written about the Children’s House, “The Montessori Method.” She also wrote”New Method of Spontaneous Education,” “The Absorbent Mind,” “The Secret of Childhood,” “The Discovery of the Child,” “Dr.
Montessori’s Own Handbook,” “Mass Explained to Children,” “Behaviorism and the Mystery of Language,” “Course of Scientific Pedagogy by Marie Montessori,” Education for a Better World,” “Education for the World of Tomorrow, “and, “Methods and the Materials of Education.” Relevant to Education: Montessori influenced Piaget, Freud, and Erickson, and many educators.
She is relevant to educational beliefs today because she introduced a different way of thinking on how children learn best. She is best remembered for her contributions including: 1) programmed instruction, 2) open classroom, 3) concrete learning materials, 4) individualized education, 5) manipulative learning materials, and 6) teaching toys.
- Montessori training and schools are prevalent in the United States today, as well as other countries.
- The small furniture, children learning by doing, higher order thinking skills being encouraged by teachers, individualized education (especially in Special Education), and manipulatives can be seen in schools.
Her research has been proved consistent with the research of child development conducted in the last thirty-five years. Traditional schools pay little attention to children as individuals and that children must adapt and learn traditional standards. Montessori believed that the teacher should adapt to each individual child.
- In Chapter 5 of “The Montessori Method,” Montessori states, “The greatness of the human personality begins at the hour of birth.
- From this almost mystic affirmation there comes what may seem a strange conclusion: that education must start from birth.” She believed that education is not something a teacher does, but that it is a natural process which develops from birth in the human race, and that the teacher is the guide.
References: Baer, F.C. (2000). Creative quotations from maria montessori (1870-1952). http://www.bemorecreative.com/one/521.htm Chronicle of the 20th Century. (1987). Maria Montessori. Mount Kisco, NY: Chronicle Pub., Inc. Microsoft Encarta Online Encyclopedia 2000.
Maria Montessori. http://encarta.msn.com/find/Concise.asp?z=1&pg=2&ti761574215 Mississippi State University, Ed. (July 7,2000). Maria Montessori. http://www2.msstate.edu/~arh1/educ.html Montessori, M. (1964). The montessori method. New York: Schocken Books Seldin, T. (1998). Maria Montessori, An Historical Prospective.
The Montessori Foundation. http://www.montessori.org/library/mariawho.htm The Consise Columbia Electronic Encyclopedia, Third Edition. (1994). Maria Montessori. Columbia University Press. http://www.encyclopedia.com/articles/08712.html Today’s Woman. (2000).100 women of the millennium: Maria Montessori.
MARIA MONTESSORI FACTS: -BORN IN 1870 IN ANCONA, ITALY -DIED IN NETHERLANDS AT THE AGE OF 81 IN 1952 -1ST WOMAN DOCTOR IN ITALY -RECEIVED MEDICAL DEGREE AT THE AGE OF 24 -AUTHORED MANY BOOKS ABOUT HER EXPERIMENTS AND BELIEFS OF CHILDREN AND THE WAY THEY LEARN -DIRECTED THE PSYCHIATRI C CLINIC AT THE UNIVERSITY OF ROME -WORKED WITH POOR CHILDREN -DEVELOPED THE “MONTESSORI” METHOD OF TEACHING -OPENED DAY CARE CENTERS CALLED “CHILDREN HOUSES” BELIEVED: -CHILDREN LEARN FROM DOING, PROBLEM-SOLVING, COOPERATION, AND TEACHER GUIDANCE -IN USING MANIPULATIVES AND REAL LIFE EXPERIENCES TO LEARN -IN USING CHILD-SIZE FURNITURE, ETC. -IN A CALM ATMOSPHERE WITH CONSISTENT ROUTINES -AS APROGRESSIVE/PRAGMATIST – MUST EXPERIENCE TO LEARN, LEARNING IS TRANSACTION BETWEEN LEARNER AND ENVIRONMENT -EDUCATION SHOULD BE CHILD-CENTERED -IN USING INDIVIDUALIZED EDUCATION -OPEN CLASSROOM CONCEPT Report Prepared by: E. Renee’ Durio
: Maria Montessori
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How did Maria Montessori develop her theories of education?
She is mainly known for developing an educational theory: the Montessori Method. It began in Italy and is both a method and a philosophy of education. It was developed based on her experiences with children at social risk. She based her ideas on respect for children and their impressive ability to learn.
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What impact did Maria Montessori theory have on the world?
Maria Montessori’s Educational Ideas – Maria’s interest in medical psychiatry soon turned into an interest in education. She immersed herself in education theory, taking courses on pedagogy and ultimately developed many theories of her own about education.
- In 1900, Maria worked as a co-director for a training institute for special education teachers.
- There, she was able to take her teaching observations and utilize them as teaching methods.
- The program was deemed a success, as children made significant educational gains.
- In 1907, Maria opened Casa dei Bambini, a school specifically for children who were economically disadvantaged or who had disabilities.
Thus, the very first Montessori school was born, and by 1910, the Montessori education method spread worldwide. Maria Montessori’s contributions have made a great impact on children around the world. Montessori methods encourage students to engage with education through their own devices; a recent study shows that this educational approach leads to significantly higher levels of motivation, interest, and importance in schoolwork and school-related tasks.
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How does the Montessori method contributes to a child’s cognitive development?
The Montessori philosophy embraces the whole child and his natural curiosity and love of learning. Children will reach their full potential both academically and socially when given the freedom to actively work with concrete, sequential materials within a carefully prepared environment and open-ended curriculum.
- Teachers/parents provide enough guidance to help children work toward independence and self-discipline.
- A multi-age classroom provides maximum opportunities for developing social and academic skills and modeling respectful behavior.
- Who was Dr.
- Maria Montessori? Dr.
- Maria Montessori, born in 1870, was the first female doctor in Rome.
She devoted her energy to the process of normal child development and how human beings can reach their potential more fully. She observed children as they interacted with their environment. Dr. Montessori identified positive human behaviors that are universal tendencies and designed educational environments to encourage these traits.
- She developed educational materials and tested, retested and refined them until she was convinced they were the best ones for teaching a specific concept. Dr.
- Montessori also field-tested the materials across ages, socio-economic backgrounds and different cultures.
- Her idea that children learn through active exploration with their environment and her identification of developmental stages in childhood are in line with Piaget’s theories on cognitive development, which are very important in early childhood education today.1 Some of the most common aspects of current preschool classrooms, such as putting the materials on low shelves and using child-size furniture, came from Dr.
Maria Montessori. What is the Montessori Method? Absorbent Mind and Sensitive Periods – ” The child has a mind to absorb knowledge. He has the power to teach himself.” – Dr. Maria Montessori Young children unconsciously absorb information as they explore their environment.
- Dr. Montessori believed there are sensitive periods in which certain environmental stimuli are especially interesting to children.
- Therefore, teachers and parents should capitalize on these periods by providing an abundance of high interest activities and appropriate lessons at the right time.
- One early sensitive period that Montessori described in detail in The Absorbent Mind is the period of learning language, which is a common topic among developmental theorists (and the media) today.
Another important period, which begins in the first year, is the one that makes a child extremely sensitive to order. Dr. Montessori observed and identified eleven different sensitive periods occurring from birth through age six. Teachers can maximize cognitive development during sensitive periods by closely observing the child, noting her interests and developmental level in each area, and presenting lessons with the appropriate materials.
In addition, the teacher encourages the children to pursue their interests, such as butterflies, while making connections to various areas of the curriculum. Observing developmental levels and integrating their interests across the curriculum is what we call “following the child.” The goal of the Montessori environment is to allow each child to fully develop his intellectual skills, not to push the child in order to meet some normative schedule of development.
I ntrinsic Motivation – “We must support as much as possible the child’s desires for activity; not wait on him, but educate him to be independent.” -Dr. Maria Montessori One of Montessori’s key discoveries is the idea that children are intrinsically motivated.
They are driven by their desire to become independent and competent beings in the world. When provided developmentally appropriate materials in a carefully prepared environment, children are motivated to learn. Dr. Montessori saw that adult correction and praise disrupt the child’s concentration, which is necessary for cognitive development.
The goal is that the child will develop a sense of satisfaction from the work itself, not be dependent on the approval of the teacher or others. That is the reason many of the Montessori materials are self-correcting. Additionally, people are motivated when given choices and when presented with work related to their interests.
When children choose materials in the classroom, it is always referred to as their “work” to show the importance of their activities and that work can be fun. Role of the Environment and Freedom – ” The child who has less opportunity for sensorial activity remains at a lower mental level.” – Dr. Maria Montessori The children are free to move about the classroom choosing their work appropriate for their current stage of development.
Feeling that one has control and can make choices fulfills a person’s need for autonomy and allows him a chance to thrive. Being able to move and socialize within this structured environment enhances cognitive and social development. Mental development is dependent upon movement.
Dr. Montessori called the hand “the instrument of the intelligence.” Although there is considerable freedom and movement within the classroom, it is freedom within limits. The children are limited by the amount of material that has been presented and by the requirement to be constructive and responsible with materials and behavior.
Learning to make good choices and becoming self-disciplined is a major goal of Montessori education and education for life. This freedom within the classroom only works with a carefully prepared and organized environment and a nurturing, observant teacher.
Learning With and From Peers – “There are many things which no teacher can convey to a child of three, but a child of five can do it with the utmost of ease.” -Dr. Maria Montessori Children learn easily from their peers and flourish in an environment similar to a family. The multi-age classroom, grouped according to specific planes of development (ages 3-6, 6-9, 9-12), allows children a chance to learn from their older peers and later a chance to be a model and teach their newly mastered academic and social skills.
A stable and strong community develops as the children continue with the same group for three years. The teachers make a deep connection with each student (and the students with each other) and they already know their strengths and needs for each new school year.
Parental concerns regarding multi-age groupings are quickly washed away as they watch how their children work and grow together in this special environment. Educating the Whole Child and Normalization – “The child is both hope and a promise for mankind.” -Dr. Maria Montessori The child’s development of personality and social behavior is an essential aspect of Montessori education.
Grace and courtesy lessons are a daily part of the Montessori curriculum. Children learn manners, respect for the environment and for others. They also develop a sense of community and an eagerness to learn. When a child’s desire for concentrated work is satisfied, he appears more calm, content and responsible.
- This is what Maria Montessori referred to as “normalization.” Academic achievement alone does not prepare one for life.
- Montessori’s unique focus on the development of each person as a complete human being provides a strong foundation for success in all areas of life.
- The most common attributes associated with students of Montessori are an interest in learning, the ability to get along well with others, the capacity to think creatively, and being able to express thoughts clearly and logically when writing and speaking.
Meaningful Contexts for Learning – “The senses, being explorers of the world, open the way to knowledge.” -Dr. Maria Montessori Learning is more meaningful when it is connected to real life. Embedding knowledge in a meaningful context is associated with improved learning, increased interest and a willingness to try new challenges.
Montessori education follows the child’s interests and connects learning with real life experiences, naturally making for more meaningful contexts. Learning is also improved when the materials and concepts are seen in other situations. Since subject matters are integrated in the Montessori classroom with the same teacher, children are easily able to assimilate new information.
This differs from most traditional schools where even young children change classes and teachers for different subject areas. When Montessori children use each material at the age- appropriate time and use it over and over in spontaneous repetition, they gradually build an in-depth understanding of the concepts and they are ready for the next level of work.
- Role of the Teacher – “The teacher must believe that this child before her will show his true nature when he finds a piece of work that attracts him.” -Dr.
- Maria Montessori Montessori teachers have high expectations of the children’s academic and social achievement.
- The teacher’s aim is to assist the children in moving toward independence, while providing whatever guidance is necessary to ensure that the children make good decisions and engage in productive behaviors.
Teachers give the children more of a sense of control as they choose their own work. The teacher’s role is to actively observe the children, maintain an inspiring learning environment, give new lessons at the appropriate time and intervene when children need guidance or structure.
In traditional classrooms, the teacher’s main role is to impart knowledge; whereas, in Montessori education the teacher’s role is that of a facilitator, guiding the child within the environment. The children learn more by initiating active involvement with the materials made available by the teacher than passively waiting to be given information.
Montessori teachers use observation instead of testing for a more authentic assessment of a child’s specific skills. They repeat lessons when necessary and give new lessons when children appear to have mastered the material and are ready for the next sequence.
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What is the Montessori approach to early childhood education?
The Montessori Method encourages self-directed learning that promotes self-confidence, independent thought and action, and critical thinking, while fostering social-emotional and intellectual growth. Education for peace is a foundational component of Montessori education at all levels.
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What is the Montessori way of learning?
What is Montessori Education? – Montessori is a method of education that is based on self-directed activity, hands-on learning and collaborative play. In Montessori classrooms children make creative choices in their learning, while the classroom and the highly trained teacher offer age-appropriate activities to guide the process.
Children work in groups and individually to discover and explore knowledge of the world and to develop their maximum potential. Montessori classrooms are beautifully crafted environments designed to meet the needs of children in a specific age range. Dr. Maria Montessori discovered that experiential learning in this type of classroom led to a deeper understanding of language, mathematics, science, music, social interactions and much more.
Most Montessori classrooms are secular in nature, although the Montessori educational method can be integrated successfully into a faith-based program. Every material in a Montessori classroom supports an aspect of child development, creating a match between the child’s natural interests and the available activities.
Children can learn through their own experience and at their own pace. They can respond at any moment to the natural curiosities that exist in all humans and build a solid foundation for life-long learning. The Association Montessori Internationale (AMI) was established by Maria Montessori in 1929 to protect the integrity of her work and to support high standards for both teacher training and schools.
Today, AMI continues to uphold Maria Montessori’s vision while collaborating with contemporary research in neuroscience and child development. Montessori Northwest is proud to be an official teacher training center of AMI, training teachers to work with children from birth to age twelve.
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What is the influence of Montessori on educational practices today?
Impact of Montessori on Modern Education: –
Scientific Concept of Education- Today we treat education as a science. We depend upon experimentation, observation and other scientific methods for improvement in the field of education. Montessori gave a scientific approach to education and laid emphasis on observation and experimentation. Emphasis on Individual Teaching- In the modern system of education, an individual is given due weightage. Montessori held that individual attention should be paid to each child. Opportunities should be provided to each child to develop in his own way. The emphasis on individual teaching is an improvement upon the old methods of group teaching. Psychological approach to Education- In the modern system of education, we lay much emphasis on the psychology of the child. Today we attach importance to the needs, interest, motives and potentialities of the child. Play-way spirit is also encouraged. Montessori psychologised education and recognized the importance of psychological principles. Freedom for the Child- Montessori gave impetus to the ‘Freedom for the child movement’. Freedom is the fundamental right of every human being. Montessori was the first educator who demonstrated to us the practical aspect of freedom in the classroom. In the modern system of education, the child is given freedom in many respects. Positive Discipline- Montessori gave us a new concept of discipline. She was against all types of prizes and punishments as they are incentives towards the unnatural development of a child. Her concept of discipline is that of self-control and self-directed activity. It should not be obtained through the repressive measure. It should not be imposed from outside, but it should be from within. Montessori’s concept of discipline has significantly influenced the modern concept of discipline. Democracy in Education- Montessori’s ‘Children House’ was practically a democratic institution, where children had to pay regard to the freedom of others and work co-operatively in various activities like cleaning the rooms and serving meals in the lunchroom. Modern institutions are also run on democratic lines. Learning by Doing- In the modern system of education importance has been attached to learning by doing. In Montessori’s system of education, children learn by doing and living. Right Place for the Teacher- In the Montessori system, a teacher has to play a special role. He is to provide the right type of environment and proper material at the proper moment. He is not to give spoon-feeding. He should help when his help is sought by the students. Montessori substitutes the term ‘directress’ for the word ‘teacher’.
Is Montessori education effective?
State-run Montessori schools for all ages are widespread and popular in the Netherlands. (Getty Images) Montessori schools have many loyal devotees and they’re certainly rising in popularity among American parents. But are they any better than traditional schools, or other progressive teaching philosophies? You’d think we’d know the answer to that question by now.
Montessori schools have been around for more than a hundred years, dating back to Maria Montessori’s first school for poor children in Rome in 1907. In recent years, there’s been a surge in new Montessori schools in the United States, fueled, in part, by new state laws that are expanding the numbers of publicly funded, but privately run charter schools.
Today there are some 500 publicly funded Montessori schools across the United States, up from fewer than 300 in 2000, according to the National Center for Montessori in the Public Sector. The number of private Montessori schools, estimated to be around 4,000, is rising too.
- Full disclosure: my daughter attends a Montessori school and I went to a Montessori kindergarten.) Yet there’s been very little rigorous research to prove that children learn more in Montessori schools than they otherwise would have.
- The main problem is that you can’t randomly assign some students to Montessori schools and study how they do compared with students at traditional schools.
Parents get to make these choices, and it’s quite possible that the parents who choose Montessori schools are more academically inclined than those who don’t. Thanks to the expansion of publicly funded Montessori schools, with lotteries and waitlists to get in, researchers are now able to study the matter more rigorously.
That’s because lotteries are, in effect, a random assignment machine. Some kids win a seat in a Montessori school. Others don’t. And you can compare the achievement of the lottery losers with the lottery winners. Recently, two peer-reviewed studies were published using this methodology. The results are mixed: promising for preschool, not so promising for older students in high school.
In the October 2017 preschool study, published in Frontiers in Psychology, six researchers looked at two Montessori schools in Hartford, Connecticut. Both were established by the state as public “magnet” schools, designed to be very high-quality Montessori programs that would attract wealthy families from the suburbs to low-income neighborhoods in Hartford.
- Some of the students who attended the public Montessori schools had family incomes as high as $200,000 a year.
- The students who “lost” the lottery all ended up at some other sort of preschool.
- Half of them attended a private school; others went to a federally funded Head Start program.
- The researchers tested approximately 140 students at the start of the preschool and found that both the Montessori and non-Montessori kids began at age three with similar achievement scores.
The 70 students who went to the Montessori schools advanced more rapidly on math and literacy tests over the next three years. At the end of kindergarten, when this study ended, the Montessori kids had significantly higher achievement. (Softer skills, such as group problem-solving, executive function and creativity were not better for Montessori kids.
- The two groups did about the same on those measures, or the differences were not statistically significant.) To be sure, high-income kids outperformed low-income kids regardless of the school.
- But the researchers found that lower-income kids in Montessori schools had much higher math and literacy scores than the lower-income kids in other schools.
Similarly, higher-income kids in Montessori outperformed higher-income kids in other schools, but not by as much. One question is whether it’s the Montessori method that’s driving the results, or whether these Hartford children benefited from especially good teachers who would have gotten these results regardless of the teaching method.
- One theory is that gifted educators are particularly drawn to Montessori philosophy and study for the extra certifications.
- Even if it is the Montessori method, it’s unknown whether the whole complex system is required, including all the expensive wooden materials and step-by-step teaching techniques, or whether certain elements are driving the results.
The two schools in this study strictly adhered to the original Montessori philosophy, Many other Montessori schools have adapted with the times, introducing technology, for example, and supplementing their instruction with non-Montessori curriculum and ideas.
Angeline Lillard, one of this study’s six authors and a professor of psychology at the University of Virginia, hopes to build a body of evidence for Montessori by repeating these results in other cities. The Hartford study follows her 2006 Milwaukee study, published in Science magazine, which also found better results for children who won a lottery to attend a public Montessori school.
Meanwhile, a September 2017 study published in Economics of Education Review found that a Montessori education didn’t make a difference for teenagers. It tracked hundreds of students, some of whom had won a lottery to attend a Montessori high school in the Netherlands, others of whom had lost the lottery and attended a traditional secondary school.
- State-run Montessori schools for all ages are widespread and popular in the Netherlands, where Maria Montessori spent the final years of her life and died in 1952.
- By contrast, there are few Montessori high schools in the United States.) In the Netherlands, Montessori high school students did no better or worse than traditional students.
They finished their secondary degrees at the same rates with similar grades and final exam results. The author, Nienke Rujis, also found no differences on soft skills. Montessori students showed similar levels of motivation, and scored no better on measures of independence, “even though these are the main characteristics that a Montessori education claims to foster,” Rujis wrote.
Lillard, who sent both of her daughters to a Montessori elementary school, suspects that uneven quality of instruction might explain why the Dutch Montessori schools didn’t prove their superiority. “I’ve heard about classrooms full of Montessori materials but the teachers had no training,” Lillard said.
Considering the high demand for these schools, the quality probably isn’t too shabby. However, there is more variation among high schools, since the Montessori curriculum for older students is less standardized or prescribed. Another real possibility is that Montessori might work quite well with younger children, but the extra, early boost “fades out” as students from traditional schools catch up.
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