What is Montessori?
Montessori teaching is a scientific way of being committed to laws of nature with children to support their true natural development. This distinctive new education first emerged from the scientific research and discoveries of Dr. Maria Montessori while observing young children in Rome, Italy in the early 1900’s.
In 1907, Dr. Montessori observed young children given freedom to interact with a variety of self-teaching materials. In this way, she discovered they changed from the ordinary pattern of disorder, inattention and fantasy to a totally new state of spontaneous self-discipline, love of order, peace, attachment to reality and complete harmony with the environment. The consistency of this transformation led her to conclude that she had discovered the child’s true normal way of being. She referred to this transformation as a normalization, and the new children as normalized. After 1907 until her death in 1952, she sought to help others bring about this same new reality in normalized children by following an approach of scientific education which eventually came to be known as Montessori teaching.
Since Dr. Montessori never detailed the particulars of her approach, would-be practitioners soon became confused and frustrated in trying to put it into practice. Many sought guidance by rigidly following Dr. Montessori’s direct advice and personality as a model. Others simply accommodated Montessori teaching to the conventional philosophy, beliefs, and standards of their own particular culture. However, since neither of these types of personality or culture Montessori teaching exactly duplicated Dr. Montessori’s original scientific experiment, they couldn’t fully bring about the same normalizing phenomenon or effects.
In 1979, a new understanding of Montessori teaching emerged, showing how to bring about the child’s true nature as Dr. Montessori discovered in 1907. This true natural Montessori teaching follows laws of nature, rather than the limited types committed to either personality of culture.
True natural Montessori teaching functions to control the environment, not the child, viewing the child as an unknown spiritual being and the environment as everything around that child, consisting of other children, physical objects, and adult personality. Controlling the environment means to experimentally remove its various detrimental influences by various experimental actions according to observable changes in the children’s outward behavior.
In 2003, a specific technology emerged to implement true natural Montessori teaching, consisting of a series of techniques, protocols, lesson presentations, and safe words. Using this technology, anyone can now consciously conduct Montessori teaching to bring about the child’s true nature in a reliable, objective manner that was never possible before.