Maria Montessori created the first Montessori school. It was a method of education which respected the natural development of the child. Its main feature was to allow as much independence as possible to the individual child. Another feature was to allow mixed ages in the same classroom. This was different from the formal classroom teaching used even for young children at the time. Maria Montessori started this method when she was in charge of a school for handicapped children. Maria Montessori also founded around 1907 in San Lorenzo, a slum area of Rome, the first Casa dei Bambini ("Children's House"). She died on May 6, 1952.
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