Our Favorite Montessori Links



What Do P. Diddy, Sergey Brin and Peter Drucker Have in Common? by Glenn Rifkin, with photographs by Asia Kepka. From the Winter 2013 issue of Korn/Ferry's Briefings magazine.

Montessori finally (finally!) goes mainstream -- in an influential publication that is read by corporate chieftains and board member the world over. It's subtitle? When it comes to producing creative business leaders, a Montessori education has proven to be a potent predictor of future success. Need we say more?


Montessori Madness, the 321Draw version with Trevor Eissler

Trevor Eissler is the original Montessori Dad:  He loved what it did for his children so much that he wrote a book about it (Montessori Madness, a must-read for any prospective Montessori parent). He has more recently been joined in this quest by Dr. Steven Hughes (see below) and Daniel Petter-Lipstein (see below also). This video is a speed-drawing overview of Montessori: The drawings alone are worth the watch.


How Do You Hug a Child Like This? A 321Draw video with Trever Eissler.

A hard-hitting indictment of the demotivating effects of traditional factory-model education with a very bad title, and a case for changing education (to Montessori, of course).


Is Montessori The Origin of Google & Amazon? by Steve Denning. From Forbes.com
Somebody finally said it:  There's an incredibly successful model for education that has been around for a hundred years and is already globally implemented to boot.


The Single Best Idea for Reforming K-12 Education by Steve Denning. From Forbes.com

Change the goal from cramming it in to fostering a life-long love of learning. Now, where have we heard that before??? Let Denning say it: "Thousands of Montessori schools have been on this track for many years, with extraordinary results. (See, "Is Montessori The Origin of Google & Amazon", above, also by Denning.)


Superwoman Was Already Here by Daniel Petter-Lipstein via Forbes.com

A Montessori Dad says it briefly and eloquently and was quoted heavily on Forbes.com.


Montessori: The Missing Voice in the Education Debate by Laura Flores Shaw. From HuffingtonPost.com

A California Montessori school head asks why the educational establishment either chooses to ignore or remains ignorant of Montessori. Good question.


The Montessori Mafia by Peter Sims. From the Wall Street Journal.

A feel-good article: Montessori goes mainstream.  Two business school professors, as a result of a study of 3,000 entrepreneurs, discover that a disproportionate number, especially of the most successful of them, went to Montessori schools, and say so, publicly.


How Do Innovators Think?  by Bronwyn Fryer from the Harvard Business Review blog

An HBR contributing editor speaks with Professors Jeff Dyer of Brigham Young University and Hal Gregersen of Insead about the subject of their book, Innovator's DNA, which seems to explain how Google, Amazon, The Sims and Wikipedia came to be.


Montessori Builds Innovators by Andrew McAfee from the Harvard Business Review blog

Why Montessori is the perfect incubator for innovators in training, from the principal research scientist at the Center for Digital Business in the MIT Sloan School of Management -- and a Montessori child himself.


For fun:  The first five minutes of the TED talk by Sims videogame inventor Will Wright.


Once a Montessori child, always a Montessori child.

Dr. Steven Hughes: Good at Doing Things: Montessori Education and Higher Order Cognitive Functions
(Careful:  This one is about 1.5 hours long; tough to handle at one sitting).
Dr. Steven Hughes is a pediatric neurologist and President of the American Academy of Pediatric Neurology.  This is an amazing talk from a neurological perspective -- a dazzling tribute to Montessori's genius.




Links We Love That Are NOT Montessori But Would Be If They Mentioned the Word



Build A School In The Cloud (Sugata Mitra, TED, February 2013).

Educational researcher Sugata Mitra, winner of the $1MM 2013 TED Prize, talks about his wish: A school in the cloud comprised of Self-Organized Learning Environments (SOLEs), where children can explore and learn from one another. We agree with Dr. Mitra that traditional schooling is obsolete. This is a digital age; the education we got is nothing like the education our children need. We have first-hand evidence that children need to explore and learn from one another: Isn't that what Montessori is all about? Where we disagree with Dr. Mitra's conclusions is that we do not believe that a group of self-determining youngsters will spend any time at all on the tedious tasks of learning math facts and operations or on the mechanics of language. We still subscribe to Dr. Montessori's belief that the hand is the tool of the mind and that honing the tools is the primary goal of education. That's why we at WFM have organized our SOLEs as Montessori classrooms with manipulatives. Digital learning in SOLEs is reserved for our Upper El and Middle School students, who are then able to use their curiosity and skills to engage in stunningly creative learning without us.


Do Schools Kill Creativity? (Sir Ken Robinson, TED, February 2006) Almost 12 million views and counting.

Creativity expert Sir Ken Robinson challenges the way we're educating our children. He champions a radical rethink of our school systems, to cultivate creativity and acknowledge multiple types of intelligence. We love it because it speaks to the education of the whole child, which is so important to us.


The Surprising Science of Motivation (Daniel H. Pink, TED, July 2009)

Author Dan Pink on why intrinsic motivation trumps external rewards every time. Although he doesn't mention Montessori In this video, it gets a quote in Pink's 2009 bestseller, Drive (p.182): “Many of the key tenets of a Montessori education resonate with the principles of Motivation 3.0 — that children naturally engage in self-directed learning and independent study; that teachers should act as observers and facilitators of that learning, and not as lecturers or commanders; and that children are naturally inclined to experience periods of intense focus, concentration, and flow that adults should do their best not to interrupt. Although Montessori schools are rare at the junior high and high school levels, every school, educator, and parent can learn from its enduring and successful approach.”


The Child Driven Education (Sugata Mitra, TED, July 2010)

Sugata Mitra's "Hole in the Wall" experiments have shown that, in the absence of supervision or formal teaching, children can teach themselves and each other, if they're motivated by curiosity and peer interest. Maria Montessori observed the same thing in the early 1900's; Dr. Mitra proves it a hundred years later. Dr. Mitra is a Visiting Professor at the MIT Media Lab and Professor of Educational Technology, School of Education, Communication and Language Sciences, Newcastle University in the UK. Maria Montessori was an M.D. and a Professor of Anthropology at the University of Rome.


Let's Use Video to Reinvent Education (Salman Khan, TED, March 2011)

Maybe not the first call for "flipping the classroom", but maybe the first loudest. A brilliant idea that struck us as Montessori on steroids, precisely the leverage we've been looking for so that our upper grades can remain true Montessori classrooms (most don't). Presented in Long Beach, CA in March 2011, we've been using Khan Academy for Math since April 2011.


Stop Stealing Dreams by Seth Godin on Squidoo.com

In February 2012, serial entrepreneur and marketing guru Seth Godin released a 30,000-word manifesto, available in many forms, on Squidoo in response to the question "What do you think we ought to do about education?". What we noticed is that the change that Godin calls for is what we are already doing in our Montessori classrooms.


Lego Serious Play for Education in three minutes (final version) YouTube Video by David Gauntlett. Narrated by John Moraitis. June 2010.

Wow! Using manipulatives in the classroom to engage students! What a novel idea!!!! By the way, Lego Serious Play has been around for a long time as a consulting tool for business performance and innovation (see http://www.seriousplay.com/). It looks like extending its use in education is the new, new thing.