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AMS 2014 Living Legacy: John Chattin-McNichols

John Chattin McNicholsLeave your words of congratulations for John below.

Dr. John Chattin-McNichols has been a Montessorian since 1971, when he studied with Mario Montessori in Bergamo, Italy, before going on to earn a bachelor’s degree from UCLA and a doctorate from Stanford University.

Internationally recognized as a distinguished teacher and scholar, John has been a Fulbright lecturer, teaching courses in early childhood education in the Republic of Trinidad and Tobago. He has lent his expertise to Montessori programs in countries including England, South Korea, Australia, and Brazil.

In his published research on topics as varied as computer literacy and educational reform in post-colonial Trinidad, as well as his still widely read 1992 book The Montessori Controversy, John has made an essential contribution to the intellectual legacy of Montessori education.

With his deep knowledge and gracious, accessible, witty communication style, John has been a beacon for a generation of Montessori teachers. Currently an associate professor of education as well as director of the E.M. Standing Center for Montessori Studies at Seattle University (where he has been a faculty member since 1979), John is also past chair of the university’s Department of Teaching and Learning. He is also currently a faculty member of Seton Montessori Institute's Elementary Teacher Education Program.

Along with teaching courses in child development and Montessori education, John has directed over 30 (and counting) doctoral dissertations. He founded the Montessori Education Institute of the Pacific Northwest, serving as director for 18 years, until 2004; he also assisted in the conversion of Bunche Elementary School (Fort Wayne, Indiana) to a Montessori-based magnet program.

Starting in 1986, John was co-director of the AMS Teachers Research Network, a seminar in which teachers learned how to conduct research in their own classrooms; and he served as chair of the Montessori Accreditation Council for Teacher Education (MACTE) Research Committee, 1992 – 1997.

In addition, he is an almost 30-year member of the editorial board of Montessori Life magazine.

Throughout his career, John has been a pioneer in educating the Montessori community and the education world at large about the benefits and proper limits of technology. He has received grants for designing and implementing educational software—and, in 1995, while serving as president of AMS, was the designer of the very first AMS Web site. He was a member of the Board of Directors for 8 years, and vice president for communications for 4.

John spends his “down time” with his wife Barbara, their children, and friends at the family’s cabin in the mountains, where he reconnects with nature and catches up with his reading. His homemade wine has sold for a pretty good price at past AMS auctions.


Add your tribute

Your book The Montessori Controversy has left an indelible mark on me as a fledgling researcher. I have been inspired into action research as a teacher through some of your sessions at the AMS conference, and am now pursuing a PhD to spread the word, and the research, on Montessori to greater populations. Congratulations on your Living Legacy award!

Natalie Danner

04 /02 /2013 - Urbana, IL
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