Every school implements some version of a learning curriculum. Here is why the Montessori Curriculum works best:

Maria Montessori was the first female doctor in Italy, defying the social norms of her day. She was brilliant and graduated at the top of her class. When tasked with educating the impoverished children in Rome, Dr. Montessori opted not to use the traditional teaching methods. Instead, she began testing her child-centered educational theories in the classroom, using scientific observation to identify development stages and discern how children learn. Montessori designed a unique set of learning materials to meet children's evolving needs and created a classroom environment that fostered the children's inner desire to learn. Fortunately, Montessori was ahead of her time and devised a child-centered approach based on their developmental needs. Classrooms were designed with furniture and materials tailored to the child.  Tossing aside preconceived notions of what they should look like, she created schools based on her direct observations of the child -  Montessori schools.

Fast forward through time, and you will notice that many of today's leading scientists, in research on brain and child development, recommend and champion Montessori's principles. Children learn by doing. They learn with their hands and through movement. Stifling their innate urge to explore and engage with their world by relegating them to school desks defies nature's laws, thus impeding learning. Montessori education has withstood the test of time because it is the most authentic approach to teaching. It is proof that all the bells and whistles in the world, promised by the latest, greatest curriculum, can't outperform mother nature. Above the fray of the education reform debate—and for a very long time—students have been graduating from Montessori schools with the very skills that researchers now recognize as “21st century skills.”



If Montessori is so effective, why is it not more mainstream?

Once shrouded in mystery and considered an alternative form of education, Montessori is gaining popularity with over 5,000 schools in the US. There are over 20,000 Montessori schools worldwide. The largest school in the world is The City Montessori School in India, with 39,437 pupils and 2,500 teachers. So if Montessori is so great, why isn't it featured in every school system? Besides the fact that high-quality Montessori materials can be cost-prohibitive, a child-centered education is difficult to systematize. Public schools, tasked with schooling large sections of the population, need the ease of one curriculum that can be applied universally. Montessori is an approach to learning, a way of life that relies just as much social emotional learning as it does on individualized instruction. The Montessori Method is more than academic learning. It is a comprehensive philosophy for how to raise and educate children. The goal of it is to preserve the magic of childhood. Montessori raises the questions, "Why the rush? Children are resilient; just because they comply with a quicker pace, doesn't mean they should. What do school leaders hope to gain by requiring children to complete more school work in less time?"


Montessori classrooms are calibrated to the speed of childhood by making the very process of learning an intentional endeavor. Observe a Montessori classroom in action, and you will see happy, well-adjusted, content children who are wholly present in the moment and loving their school experience. The child's innate goodness is preserved and fostered through respect, self-fulfilling work, and a culture of kindness. This considered approach is what elevates a student-centered education.