Be inspired by the powerful words of Dr Maria Montessori.

Dr Maria Montessori’s work has yielded a great collection of inspiring quotes – some of them give us insights into her research, others help us understand what it means to be a Montessorian, while quite a few are deeply philosophical.

We’ve gathered below some of our favourite quotes from Dr Montessori.

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.”

“Our care of the child should be governed, not by the desire to make [them] learn things, but by the endeavor always to keep burning within [them] that light which is called intelligence.”

“One test of the correctness of educational procedure is the happiness of the child.”

“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.”

“It is tremendously important that we should understand the spontaneous way in which the child develops [themselves]. We are so anxious to help, to us it seems the burden of growth and development is so great that we must do all we can to make the pathway easy. And so our love may easily overreach itself and by providing too many urges, too many cautions and corrections.”

“Education is a work of self-organisation by which [humans] adapt [themselves] to the conditions of life.”

“The senses, being explorers of the world, open the way to knowledge.”

“The greatest gifts we can give our children are the roots of responsibility and the wings of independence.”

“The task of the educator lies in seeing that the child does not confound good with immobility and evil with activity.”

“Children are human beings to whom respect is due, superior to us by reason of their innocence and of the greater possibilities of their future… Let us treat them with all the kindness which we would wish to help to develop in them.”

“Only through freedom and environmental experience is it practically possible for human development to occur.”

“By offering the child the story of the universe, we give [them] something a thousand times more infinite and mysterious to reconstruct with [their] imagination, a drama no fable can reveal.”

“At this time, the studies ought to be directed toward humanity, toward human life… the feeling of society, which ought to contribute to more understanding among [people], and as a result, more love.”

“Early childhood education is the key to the betterment of society.”

“Preventing conflicts is the work of politics: establishing peace is the work of education.”

“Above all it is the education of adolescent that is important because adolescence is the time when the child enters the state of [adult]hood and becomes a member of society.”

“Education should not limit itself to seeking new methods for a mostly arid transmission of knowledge: its aim must be to give the necessary aid to human development.”

“To consider the school as a place where instruction is given is one point of view. But to consider the school as a preparation for life is another. In the latter case, the school must satisfy all the needs of life.”

“Let us leave the life free to develop within the limits of the good, and let us observe this inner life developing. This is the whole of our mission.”

“What we once enjoyed and deeply loved we can never lose, for all that we love deeply becomes part of us.”

“The only true freedom for an individual is to have the opportunity to act independently … there is no such thing as an individual until a person can act by [themselves].”

“It is not enough for the teacher to love the child. [They] must first love and understand the universe. [They] must prepare [themselves], and truly work at it.”

“The only thing the absorbent mind needs is the life of the individual; give [them] life and an environment and [they] will absorb all that is in it. But, of course, if you keep a camera in a drawer you will never get any pictures. It is necessary for this absorbent mind to go out into the environment.”

“The greatest sign of success for a to be able to say, ‘The children are now working as if I did not exist.'”

Get to know the Montessori terminology.

Familiarise yourself with the vocabulary and terminology used in a Montessori environment.