Ottawa Montessori School has offered a Montessori approach to education for forty years. This internationally recognized philosophy of education was developed by Dr. Maria Montessori. Dr. Montessori was the first woman to become a physician in Italy in the early 1900’s. Through her medical work with children and her scientific training in observation, she became interested in the way young children learn. In 1907 she set up a school for children between the ages of two and six years. From this humble beginning Maria Montessori became an internationally recognized educator who was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize. Today, there are more than 8000 Montessori schools in the world, on every inhabited continent. The Montessori approach is the most used pedagogy in the world today.
Dr. Montessori believed that education should not just be academic but that it should also be an aid to life. Her observations led her to understand that children have special sensitivities at different stages of their development. By preparing learning environments responsive to those characteristics children became very focussed in their activities. They not only learned academic skills with ease and eager enthusiasm but also developed healthy self-esteem, strong self discipline, respect for others and for the world, and a calm, centered manner.