Have you noticed Google’s doodle for today yet? It is in honor of Maria Montessori, founder of the Montessori style of learning, which focuses on open-ended, free-form learning, which involves a lot of play. From PC Magazine:
Google on Friday honored Italian physician and educator Maria Montessori with a homepage doodle celebrating her 142nd birth anniversary.
The drawing features some of the tools that form the basis of Montessori’s educational methods, which emphasize hands-on, individualized learning within mixed age groups in a child-friendly setting.
After working in insane asylums with mentally handicapped children, in 1904 she began re-engineering the field of children’s education. She believed that all children have an inner drive to learn, and that children learn best when in a safe, hands-on learning environment.
Montessori also found that children help teach each other when put into groups with other kids of their own age range. She believed that teachers should pay close attention to students, not the other way around.
Her early efforts were so successful that she amassed a large following of parents and teachers who wanted to learn her methods. She later gained support from Thomas Edison, Helen Keller, and Alexander Graham Bell, who founded the Montessori Educational Association, headquartered in Washington D.C.
Read the full article.
Thanks Google for showcasing a great woman who was a pioneer in creating more playful and therefore better learning environments for kids.
Hope everyone has a great looong weekend before school starts up for a lot of people (appropriate timing to honor Montessori, eh?), filled with lots of learning, exploration, and playful environments.
- Maria Montessori, the Italian physician and educator, gets Google Doodle (siliconrepublic.com)
- Montessori Education Celebrated With Google Doodle (seroundtable.com)
- Maria Montessori, a bold life breaking gender boundaries (csmonitor.com)
- Maria Montessori: 10 things you need to know about the pioneering Italian doctor (mirror.co.uk)