Top 389 Quotes & Sayings by Maria Montessori

Explore popular quotes and sayings by an Italian educator Maria Montessori.
Last updated on July 18, 2024.
Maria Montessori

Maria Tecla Artemisia Montessori was an Italian physician and educator best known for the philosophy of education that bears her name, and her writing on scientific pedagogy. At an early age, Montessori enrolled in classes at an all-boys technical school, with hopes of becoming an engineer. She soon had a change of heart and began medical school at the Sapienza University of Rome, becoming one of the first women to attend medical school in Italy; she graduated with honors in 1896. Her educational method is in use today in many public and private schools globally.

Education is a work of self-organization by which man adapts himself to the conditions of life.
The child is not an empty being who owes whatever he knows to us who have filled him up with it. No, the child is the builder of man. There is no man existing who has not been formed by the child he once was.
We cannot create observers by saying 'observe', but by giving them the power and the means for this observation and these means are procured through education of the senses.
The only language men ever speak perfectly is the one they learn in babyhood, when no one can teach them anything! — © Maria Montessori
The only language men ever speak perfectly is the one they learn in babyhood, when no one can teach them anything!
Travel stories teach geography; insect stories lead the child into natural science; and so on. The teacher, in short, can use reading to introduce her pupils to the most varied subjects; and the moment they have been thus started, they can go on to any limit guided by the single passion for reading.
Free the child's potential, and you will transform him into the world.
When you have solved the problem of controlling the attention of the child, you have solved the entire problem of its education.
One test of the correctness of educational procedure is the happiness of the child.
The child's mind is not the type of mind we adults possess. If we call our type of mind the conscious type, that of the child is an unconscious mind. Now an unconscious mind does not mean an inferior mind. An unconscious mind can be full of intelligence. One will find this type of intelligence in every being, and every insect has it.
When the child begins to think and to make use of the written language to express his rudimentary thinking, he is ready for elementary work; and this fitness is a question not of age or other incidental circumstance but of mental maturity.
If intelligence is the triumph of life, the spoken word is the marvellous means by which this intelligence is manifested.
We discovered that education is not something which the teacher does, but that it is a natural process which develops spontaneously in the human being.
The possibility of observing the developments of the psychical life of the child as natural phenomena and experimental reactions transforms the school itself in action into a kind of scientific laboratory for the psychogenetic study of man.
Through machinery, man can exert tremendous powers almost as fantastic as if he were the hero of a fairy tale. Through machinery, man can travel with an ever increasing velocity; he can fly through the air and go beneath the surface of the ocean.
Indeed there are powers in the small child that are far greater than is generally realized, because it is in this period that the construction, the building-up, of man takes place, for at birth, psychically speaking, there is nothing at all - zero!
The purpose of life is to obey the hidden command which ensures harmony among all and creates an ever better world. We are not created only to enjoy the world, we are created in order to evolve the cosmos.
The study of expression ought to form a part of the study of psychology, but it also comes within the province of anthropology because the habitual, life-long expressions of the face determine the wrinkles of old age, which are distinctly an anthropological characteristic.
At three years of age, the child has already laid the foundations of the human personality and needs the special help of education in the school. The acquisitions he has made are such that we can say the child who enters school at three is an old man.
The task of the educator lies in seeing that the child does not confound good with immobility and evil with activity. — © Maria Montessori
The task of the educator lies in seeing that the child does not confound good with immobility and evil with activity.
The child who concentrates is immensely happy.
It is by developing the individual that he is prepared for that wonderful manifestation of the human intelligence, which drawing constitutes. The ability to see reality in form, in color, in proportion, to be master of the movements of one's own hand - that is what is necessary.
The man of character is the persistent man, the man who is faithful to his own word, his own convictions, his own affections.
Joy, feeling one's own value, being appreciated and loved by others, feeling useful and capable of production are all factors of enormous value for the human soul.
The development of language is part of the development of the personality, for words are the natural means of expressing thoughts and establishing understanding between people.
Early childhood education is the key to the betterment of society.
Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed.
The person who is developing freely and naturally arrives at a spiritual equilibrium in which he is master of his actions, just as one who has acquired physical poise can move freely.
All work is noble; the only ignoble thing is to live without working. There is need to realize the value of work in all its forms whether manual or intellectual, to be called 'mate,' to have sympathetic understanding of all forms of activity.
To confer the gift of drawing, we must create an eye that sees, a hand that obeys, a soul that feels; and in this task, the whole life must cooperate. In this sense, life itself is the only preparation for drawing. Once we have lived, the inner spark of vision does the rest.
It is surprising to notice that even from the earliest age, man finds the greatest satisfaction in feeling independent. The exalting feeling of being sufficient to oneself comes as a revelation.
How can any one paint who cannot grade colors? How can any one write poetry who has not learnt to hear and see?
If education is protection to life, you will realize that it is necessary that education accompany life during its whole course.
Moral Education is the source of that spiritual equilibrium on which everything else depends and which may be compared to that physical equilibrium or sense of balance, without which it is impossible to stand upright or to move into any other position.
If education is always to be conceived along the same antiquated lines of a mere transmission of knowledge, there is little to be hoped from it in the bettering of man's future. For what is the use of transmitting knowledge if the individual's total development lags behind?
The teacher must derive not only the capacity, but the desire, to observe natural phenomena. The teacher must understand and feel her position of observer: the activity must lie in the phenomenon.
It is fortunate, I think, that nature is not bounded by human reason and by laboratory work and experimentation, for by the laws of pure reason and by microscopic investigation, it might easily have been proved, long before this, that children could not be born.
Observation, very general and wide-spread, has shown that small children are endowed with a special psychic nature. This shows us a new way of imparting education!
To aid life, leaving it free, however, that is the basic task of the educator.
Dependence is not patriotism. A man does not love his mother if he hangs about her to the point of burdening her with a weak, feckless son. — © Maria Montessori
Dependence is not patriotism. A man does not love his mother if he hangs about her to the point of burdening her with a weak, feckless son.
We teachers can only help the work going on, as servants wait upon a master.
The child, merely by going on with his life, learns to speak the language belonging to his race. It is like a mental chemistry that takes place in the child.
The greatest development is achieved during the first years of life, and therefore it is then that the greatest care should be taken. If this is done, then the child does not become a burden; he will reveal himself as the greatest marvel of nature.
We await the successsive births in the soul of the child. We give all possible material, that nothing may lack to the groping soul, and then we watch for the perfect faculty to come, safeguarding the child from interruption so that it may carry its efforts through.
Establishing lasting peace is the work of education; all politics can do is keep us out of war.
If help and salvation are to come, they can only come from the children, for the children are the makers of men.
The respect and protection of woman and of maternity should be raised to the position of an inalienable social duty and should become one of the principles of human morality.
There are two 'faiths' which can uphold humans: faith in God and faith in oneself. And these two faiths should exist side by side: the first belongs to one's inner life, the second to one's life in society.
The first idea the child must acquire is that of the difference between good and evil.
Woman was always the custodian of human sentiment, morality and honour, and in these respects, man always has yielded woman the palm.
Now, what really makes a teacher is love for the human child; for it is love that transforms the social duty of the educator into the higher consciousness of a mission.
Noble ideas, great sentiments have always existed and have always been transmitted, but wars have never ceased.
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 selfsame procedure which zoology, a branch of the natural sciences, applies to the study of animals, anthropology must apply to the study of man; and by doing so, it enrolls itself as a science in the field of nature.
If the whole of mankind is to be united into one brotherhood, all obstacles must be removed so that men, all over the surface of the globe, should be as children playing in a garden.
If the ways of the Almighty are not humanly logical, it is not the fault of the Almighty but of the limitations of human logic. — © Maria Montessori
If the ways of the Almighty are not humanly logical, it is not the fault of the Almighty but of the limitations of human logic.
The greatest sign of success for a teacher... is to be able to say, 'The children are now working as if I did not exist.'
Personal health is related to self-control and to the worship of life in all its natural beauty - self-control bringing with it happiness, renewed youth, and long life.
The hand is, in the highest degree, a human characteristic. It is man's organ of grasp and of the sense of touch, while in animals these two functions are relegated to the mouth.
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.
Books are mute as far as sound is concerned. It follows that reading aloud is a combination of two distinct operations, of two 'languages.' It is something far more complex than speaking and reading taken separately by themselves.
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