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The History Of Montessori Education

The History Of Montessori Education

Most parents have heard about Montessori education and many even know the basics of what sets a Montessori preschool apart from other early childhood programs. But even parents who have chosen a Montessori program for their children don’t necessarily know about the history of this unique method to set children on a path of curiosity, independence, and lifelong learning. Even though the Montessori Method is considered an advanced teaching approach, its origins go farther back than you might think, all the way back to 1907, in Rome, Italy.

To learn more about the tuition and fees for the Grey Matter Montessori preschool program, click here.

The Rich History Of Montessori

Who Is Maria Montessori?

Born in 1870 in the town of Chiaravalle, Italy, Maria was always an ambitious student and first set her eyes on a career in engineering. As her education journey continued, she shifted her interest to medicine and graduated to become one of Italy’s first female physicians. Dr. Maria Montessori’s early career focus was psychiatry with a particular interest in child education and differences in teaching children with developmental and intellectual disabilities.

Her observations and reporting on these educational challenges led her to be appointed as co-director of a groundbreaking training institute for special education teachers. Her continued career successes paved the way to perhaps her most noteworthy accomplishment: The opening of the first Casa dei Bambini. This childcare centre was designed to deliver high-quality learning opportunities to the underserved children in San Lorenzo, an impoverished inner-city district of Rome.

With her consummately honed skills of observation and her background in educational theory. Dr. Montessori began to develop unique learning materials and methods that engaged the children in the learning environment, fostering their natural curiosity and desire to learn. Dr. Montessori’s philosophies and practices gained global recognition and the Montessori movement expanded across the continents. This was the dawn of the Montessori Method. The first Montessori education centre in Canada opened in Nova Scotia in 1912. 

What Are The Fundamentals of Montessori Education?

At the foundation of every Montessori program is respect for the child. This means we recognize and appreciate each child’s unique personality, their need to move, their freedom to make and correct their own mistakes, their style of learning, and their own pace of development. Here are some other fundamentals that set a Montessori program apart from other learning methodologies:

  • Mixed Age Classroom: Instead of the traditional approach of grouping students together by age and grade, a Montessori school recognizes the value of a mixed-age classroom
  • A Prepared Environment: The Montessori classroom environment is carefully prepared to facilitate independent learning and exploration. This concept means the Montessori classroom is structured and ordered, but encourages the child to move, choose their own activities, interact with other students or learn without interference, and be inspired by the materials provided. 
  • Connection With Nature: A connection with nature is emphasized as a way to enrich social, emotional, physical, and cognitive development.
  • Community: The concept of community is important in a Montessori school. This emphasis helps your child develop emotional intelligence, resilience, and self-control, learn cooperative social skills, and become a good global citizen.
  • Individualized Learning: Montessori education programs recognize the value of supporting each child’s unique skills and development and adapting to your child instead of expecting your child to conform to a strict curriculum.

The Gift Of A Montessori Education With Grey Matter Montessori

Grey Matter Montessori is committed to upholding the advanced and proven childhood education methodologies of Dr. Maria Montessori. Our Montessori-certified teachers are highly trained and come from a wide range of backgrounds, cultures, and experiences. The Grey Matter team knows the importance of nurturing and providing quality care for our students and we believe in the benefits of innovative Montessori methods to help children develop independence and critical thinking skills. 

Learn more about The Long-Term Benefits Of A Montessori Preschool Education here.

If you are interested in learning more about Culture and Science or any of the 5 key subject areas or exploring the benefits of the preschool classroom in a Montessori school and the advantages of a Grey Matter Montessori education for your preschool-aged or kindergarten-aged child, contact us to book a time for a school tour at our NW Calgary location. We are accessible just off of Symons Valley Parkway in the NW community of Evanston. Call us for more info on our Calgary Montessori preschool programming at 587-707-4739.


Q: What are the five subject areas of the Montessori Method?
A: The 5 key areas of study are:

Q: Is there a checklist of things my child must know before attending preschool?
A: At Grey Matter Montessori in Calgary, we value the differences that make each child unique. If your child is aged 3-6 they may be ready to begin to explore learning and we are ready to facilitate it. Learn more about exploring your child’s readiness for preschool here

Q: When do you accept registration?
A: Grey Matter Montessori has ongoing registration and even offers advanced registrations (up to two years). Contact our office for more information on the upcoming school year and register as early as possible to ensure availability for your desired days and times.

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