Maria Montessori, an Italian physician and educator, developed a new educational approach for children. She was born on August 31, 1870 in Chiaravalle, Italy. She founded the Institute of Montessori Education in 1907. Her philosophy was that children could be educated through self-directed activity and learning.
She devoted her life to the education of children and to helping them develop their natural talents.
Montessori’s philosophy is based on the belief that children are not miniature adults. They have different needs and should be treated differently than adults would be treated. Montessori also believed that there was no such thing as “learning disability” or “inferiority complex” because all children have the same potential for intellectual growth, but they need to be educated with their individual needs in mind.
Montessori believed that children should be allowed to explore freely and given materials that interest them so they can learn more about themselves
Maria Montessori Quotes
Here are 55 of the most inspiring Maria Montessori quotes.
“Let us leave the life free to develop within the limits of the good, and let us observe this inner life developing. This is the whole of our mission.”
“The child is endowed with unknown powers, which can guide us to a radiant future. If what we really want is a new world, then education must take as its aim the development of these hidden possibilities.”
“The child has a different relation to his environment from ours… the child absorbs it. The things he sees are not just remembered; they form part of his soul. He incarnates in himself all in the world about him that his eyes see and his ears hear.”
“As we observe children, we see the vitality of their spirit, the maximum effort put forth in all they do, the intuition, attention and focus they bring to all life’s events, and the sheer joy they experience in living.”
“A child who has become master of his acts through long and repeated exercises, and who has been encouraged by the pleasant and interesting activities in which he has been engaged, is a child filled with health and joy and remarkable for his calmness and discipline.”
“One test of the correctness of educational procedure is the happiness of the child.”
“Whoever touches the life of the child touches the most sensitive point of a whole, which has roots in the most distant past and climbs toward the infinite future.”
“The instructions of the teacher consist then merely in a hint, a touch—enough to give a start to the child. The rest develops of itself.”
“The satisfaction which they find in their work has given them a grace and ease like that which comes from music.”
“The child who has never learned to work by himself, to set goals for his own acts, or to be the master of his own force of will is recognizable in the adult who lets others guide his will and feels a constant need for approval of others.”
“If salvation and help are to come, it is through the child; for the child is the constructor of man.”
“The child who concentrates is immensely happy.”
“We must learn how to call upon the man which lies dormant in the soul of a child.”
“The child looks for his independence first, not because he does not desire to be dependent on the adult. But because he has in himself some fire, some urge, to do certain things and not other things.”
“The greatest gifts we can give our children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence.”
“Education is the best weapon for peace.”
“Preventing conflicts is the work of politics; establishing peace is the work of education.”
“… the child’s individual liberty must be so guided that through his activity he may arrive at independence … the child who does not do, does not know how to do.”
“We must help the child to act for himself, will for himself, think for himself; this is the art of those who aspire to serve the spirit.”
“It is not true 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.”
“The child, making use of all that he finds around him, shapes himself for the future.”
“Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment.”
“All that we ourselves are has been made by the child, by the child we were in the first two years of our lives.”
“In the child is much knowledge, much wisdom. If we do not profit from it, it is only because of neglect on our part to become humble and to see the wonder of this soul and learn what the child can teach.“Development is a series of rebirths.”
“Children are human beings to whom respect is due, superior to us by reason of their innocence and of the greater possibilities of their future.”
“There is in the child a special kind of sensitivity which leads him to absorb everything about him, and it is this work of observing and absorbing that alone enables him to adapt himself to life. He does it in virtue of an unconscious power that exists in childhood…”
“The teacher has two tasks: to lead the children to concentration and to help them in their development afterwards.”
“The child has a mind able to absorb knowledge. He has the power to teach himself.”
“Children are endowed with a power that enables them to reconstruct things which are very complex, and they do so with a great deal of pleasure.”
“Here is an essential principal of education: to teach details is to bring confusion; to establish the relationship between things is to bring knowledge.”
“At some given moment it happens that the child becomes deeply interested in a piece of work; we see it in the expression on his face, his intense concentration, the devotion to the exercise.”
“Our care of the child should be governed, not by the desire to make him learn things, but by the endeavor always to keep burning within him that light which is called intelligence.”
It follows that the child can only develop fully by means of experience on his environment. We call such experience “work”.”
“The teacher’s task is not to talk, but to prepare and arrange a series of motives for cultural activity in a special environment made for the child.”
“It comes for a moment but its benefits last for a lifetime.”
“The greatness of the human personality begins at the hour of birth.”
“These very children reveal to us the most vital need of their development, saying: ‘Help me to do it alone!’”
“Praise, help, or even a look, may be enough to interrupt him, or destroy the activity…. The great principle which brings success to the teacher is this: as soon as concentration has begun, act as if the child does not exist.”
“The adolescent must never be treated as a child, for that is a stage of life that he has surpassed. It is better to treat an adolescent as if he had greater value than he actually shows than as if he had less and let him feel that his merits and self-respect are disregarded.”
“The hand is the instrument of intelligence. The child needs to manipulate objects and to gain experience by touching and handling.”
“Our experience with children in elementary schools has shown us that the age between six and twelve years is a period of life during which the elements of all sciences should be given. It is a period that, psychologically, is especially sensitive and might be called the “sensitive period of culture” during which the abstract plane of the human mind is organized.“Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed.”
“The environment must be rich in motives which lend interest to activity and invite the child to conduct his own experiences.”
“Independence, in the case of the adolescents, has to be acquired on a different plane, for theirs is the economic independence in the field of society. Here, too, the principle of “Help me to do it alone!” ought to be applied.”
“The chief symptom of adolescence is a state of expectation, a tendency towards creative work and a need for the strengthening of self-confidence.”
“To stimulate life, leaving it free, however, to unfold itself–that is the first duty of the educator.”
“It is necessary that the child teach himself, and then the success is great.”
“The land is where our roots are. The children must be taught to feel and live in harmony with the Earth.”
“Let us treat them [children], therefore, with all the kindness which we would wish to help to develop in them.”
“An education capable of saving humanity is no small undertaking; it involves the spiritual development of man, the enhancement of his value as an individual, and the preparation of young people to understand the times in which they live.”
“It is not enough for the teacher to love the child. She must first love and understand the universe. She must prepare herself, and truly work at it.”
“. . . the task of the educator lies in seeing that the child does not confound good with immobility, and evil with activity, as often happens in old-time discipline . . .A room in which all the children move about usefully, intelligently, and voluntarily, without committing any rough or rude act, would seem to me a classroom very well disciplined indeed.”
“The task of teaching becomes easy, since we do not need to choose what we shall teach, but should place all before him for the satisfaction of his mental appetite. He must have absolute freedom of choice, and then he requires nothing but repeated experiences which will become increasingly marked by interest and serious attention, during his acquisition of some desired knowledge.”
“The teacher, when she begins work in our schools, must have a kind of faith that the child will reveal himself through work.”
Related: See our awesome collection of Quotes for Teachers!
Video: What is Montessori?
If you want to get a quick and in-depth understanding of what the Montessori Method is all about, give this video a watch!
We Hope these Maria Montessori Quotes inspire you
These quotes look past the daily activity of life and accentuate the wonder alive in every child; that they can teach themselves to become disciplined, intelligent, and the amazing people they are meant to be. May we all be good teachers.
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