Maria Montessori was born in Italy on August 31, 1870. Growing up, she was heavily influenced by her mother, who was both highly educated and an avid reader. This might be why Maria refused to compromise when it came to her own education. At first she wanted to study engineering, a controversial choice given the social conventions of her time. Then she switched to medicine, which was even more contentious to those misguided people who believed a woman's place was in the home. Ultimately, Maria's hard work paid off when she became the first woman ever to be admitted into the University of Rome's Faculty of Medicine.
That Maria Montessori was an intelligent, brave, and capable woman is undeniable. But these admirable traits are not exclusively why she is still remembered today. It is the field of education where her greatest legacy resides.
Later in life, Maria began to work with children, and she established her first Casa dei Bambini, or "children's house," in 1907. Maria was convinced that, given a suitable environment, children would take the lead in their own education. In other words, they would start learning themselves not because they were told to, but rather because they wanted to. To Maria, the real challenge was figuring out the right educational environment.
Maria's theories are popular to this day, and many schools around the world offer a Montessori education. These schools attempt to cater to certain elements of human psychology, such as communication, work, order, and abstraction. In doing so, their aim is to allow students to build up their own conceptions and self-motivate, instead of being told they’re wrong by a figure of authority. When it comes to the actual teaching, Montessori schools use an approach that includes all five of the senses, not just listening and watching.
Advocates maintain that the Montessori approach prepares students to conquer the challenges of adult life, whether emotional, academic, or professional. There are also several examples of highly successful people who received a Montessori education, including Jeff Bezos, the founder of Amazon.com. However, if Maria Montessori were still around today, she would likely emphasize that her system is based on developing a lifelong love of learning, not a massive bank account.
瑪麗亞之後的人生開始從事與孩童有關的工作， 她於1907年成立第一個「Casa deiBambini」，即「兒童之家」。她深信，只要給孩子一個適合的環境，孩子就會在自己的教育之路上引領向前。換句話說，他們會開始自主學習，並不是因為有人要他們這麼做，而是因為他們自己想這麼做。在她眼中，真正的挑戰在於如何提供合適的教育環境。
蒙特梭利教育理念的倡導者認為，其教學法能培養學生克服成人生活會面臨的挑戰，不論是在情感上、學術上，還是職業上。也有好幾個曾受過蒙特梭利教育，後來功成名就的例子，比如亞馬遜（Amazon.com）的創辦人傑夫• 貝索斯。但是，如果瑪麗亞• 蒙特梭利現在還在世的話，她很有可能會強調她的教育體系是培養終生對學習的熱愛，而不是為了擁有銀行帳戶的鉅款。