How did the Montessori teaching method begin?

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In 1907, Dr. Maria Montessori, Italy's first female physician, opened a school in San Lorenzo, Rome. Her goal was to help children become self-motivated, independent learners. She initiated a method which actively engaged children in learning by using their five senses rather than merely a rote approach. The Montessori method soon proved to be an amazing success.

Although times have changed and teaching methods have evolved, the principles based on Dr. Montessori's observations of children have remained essentially the same.