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Maria Montessori a famous Italian physician and educator was born in 1870 in a town called Chiaraville In 1876 she graduated from the medical school in the University of Rome and became the first female doctor in Italy Shortly afterwards she was chosen to represent Italy at two womens conferences in Berlin in 1896 and in London in 1900 In her medical practice her observations led her to analyze the way in which children learn She deduced that they build themselves up from what they discover in their environment She returned to the university in 1901 to study psychology and philosophy In 1904 she was made a professor of anthropology at the University of Rome Nevertheless in 1906 she gave up her teaching position at the university to teach a group of sixty young children whose parents worked There in San Lorenzo she founded the first Casa dei Bambini or Childrens House Then in 1907 she introduced her method of teaching children to the public People called these teachings the Montessori method She developed her method from watching the sixty children play learn and interact with each other The method was based on what she observed the children do naturally unassisted by the adults Children teach themselves This was her simple but profound truth she had developed over the years All her teaching was to further the self-creating process of the child Her method also stresses the development of initiative and self-reliance by permitting children to do the things by themselves that interest them but with strictly disciplined limits The Montessori method has been said to enable children to learn to read and write much more quickly than has otherwise been possible In 1913 Maria Montessori made her first visit to the United States That same year Alexander Graham Bell and his wife founded the Montessori Educational Association Thomas Edison and Helen Keller were also among her strong American supporters In
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