Anaïs researching the Arctic in the Elementary class


Shunned and Admired: Montessori, Self-Determination, and a Case for Radical School Reform (PDF)  (Angeline S. Lillard. Educational Psychology Review)

Why does Montessori persist (and increasingly in the public sector) and why does it elicit such sharply contrasting reactions? This article reviews several reasons why it is admired, such as evidence of Montessori’s effectiveness, its alignment with educational psychology research, and its broad scope. The points of research alignment are presented as natural corollaries of Montessori’s central premise: independence, or self-determination. After discussing these extrinsic and intrinsic reasons why Montessori is admired, the article concludes with speculation as to why it is also shunned—namely its incommensurability with conventional education culture and what might be a consequence: frequent poor implementation. The incommensurability of evidence-based alternatives with the conventional system is also posed as a reason for radical school reform.

The Science Behind the Genius (PDF) (Angeline Lillard. Montessori: The Science behind the Genius)

Two fundamental cornerstones of American schooling today were placed at the turn of the 20th century: the school as a factory and the child as a blank slate. Students of child development know that these ideas are obsolete, but they continue to have a profound impact on how schooling is done.

Montessori Outcomes (

A 2006 study comparing outcomes of children at a public inner-city Montessori school with children who attended traditional schools indicates that Montessori education leads to children with better social and academic skills.

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