ECE 101 Week 5 Montessori Theory

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ECE 101 Week 5 Montessori Theory

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ECE 101 Week 5 Montessori Theory,

Montessori Theory

 

Maria Montessori was born in 1870 in Chiaravalle (Ancona), Italy, to Alessandro Montessori and Renilde Stoppani (niece of Antonio Stoppani). At the age of thirteen she attended an all-boy technical school in preparation for her dream of becoming an engineer. At the time, she insisted specifically that she did not want to be a teacher because the teaching profession was one of the few that women were encouraged to take part in at the time. Montessori was the first woman to graduate from the University of Rome La Sapienza Medical School, becoming one of the first female doctors in Italy. She was a member of the University’s Psychiatric Clinic and became intrigued with trying to educate the “special needs” or “unhappy little ones” and the “uneducable” in Rome. In 1896, she gave a lecture at the Educational Congress in Torino about the training of the disabled. The Italian Minister of Education was in attendance, and, sufficiently impressed by her arguments, appointed her the same year as director of the Scuola Ortofrenica, an institution devoted to the care and education of the mentally retarded. She accepted, in order to put her theories to the test. Her first notable success was to have several of her 8 year old students apply to take the State examinations for reading and writing. The “defective” children not only passed, but had above-average scores, an achievement described as “the first Montessori miracle.” Montessori’s response to their success was “if mentally disabled children could be brought to the level of normal children then (she) wanted to study the potential of normal children” Because of her success with these children, she was asked to start a school for children in a housing project in Rome, which opened on January 6, 1907, and which she called “Casa dei Bambini” or Children’s House. Children’s House was a child care center in an apartment building in the poor neighborhood of Rome. She was focused on teaching the students ways to develop their own skills at a pace they set, which was a principle Montessori called “spontaneous self-development”. A wide variety of special equipment of increasing complexity is used to help direct the interests of the child and hasten development. When a child is ready to learn new and more difficult tasks, the teacher guides the child’s first en

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