Maria Montessori Quotes to Inspire You
A Note from AMS Executive Director, Munir Shivji
Verbs are the energy of language. And you are the energy of your American Montessori Society. Below, you will find a list of inspirational quotes from Maria Montessori based around these energizing words. A sincere thank you to Julie Compton, to the members of Collaborative Montessori, and to the AMS staff for compiling the list of verbs. Thank you as well to Montessori educator, Jana Morgan Herman, for collaborating with us on this special post.
We are so grateful for the passion, spark, and enthusiasm you bring to your work—creating an inspired world for all children around the globe.
On behalf of everyone at AMS, we share warm wishes for the upcoming holiday season and hopes for a new year filled with renewed excitement and joy.
Verbs are the energy of language. To absorb, to act, to adapt, to advocate, to affirm, to anticipate, to appreciate, to beautify, to believe, to belong, to build, to care, to celebrate, to challenge, to change, to cherish, to choose, to collaborate, to communicate, to connect, to consider, to consolidate, to construct, to cooperate, to create, to cultivate, to delight, to demonstrate, to design, to develop, to discover, to disrupt, to document, to empathize, to empower, to enable, to engage, to enhance, to enrich, to entice, to envision, to evolve, to experiment, to explore, to facilitate, to feel, to flourish, to flow, to follow, to foster, to give, to grow, to guide, to hear, to honor, to hypothesize, to imagine, to include, to innovate, to inspire, to interconnect, to introduce, to investigate, to involve, to laugh, to learn, to liberate, to listen, to love, to model, to motivate, to move, to notice, to nourish, to nurture, to observe, to orchestrate, to participate, to pause, to play, to ponder, to prepare, to protect, to provoke, to question, to refine, to reflect, to rejoice, to repeat, to research, to respect, to rest, to seed, to seek, to sense, to serve to share, to simplify, to sing, to strengthen, to suggest, to support, to sustain, to thank, to think, to touch, to treasure, to trust, to unite, to validate, to value, to welcome, to witness, to wonder, to work.
"The absorbent mind is indeed a marvelous gift to humanity! By merely 'living' and without any conscious effort the individual absorbs from the environment even a complex cultural achievement like language. If this essential mental form existed in the adult, how much easier would our studies be!"
– Maria Montessori, Formation of Man, page 64
"Culture and education have no bounds or limits; now man is in a phase in which he must decide for himself how far he can proceed in the culture that belongs to the whole of humanity."
– Maria Montessori, Four Planes of Education, page 14
"The child’s conquest of independence begins with his first introduction to life. While he is developing, he perfects himself and overcomes every obstacle that he finds in his path. A vital force is active within him, and this guides his efforts towards their goal. It is a force called the ‘horme.’"
– Maria Montessori, The Absorbent Mind, page 83
"The children of today will make all the discoveries of tomorrow. All the discoveries of mankind will be known to them and they will improve what has been done and make fresh discoveries. They must make all the improvements in houses, cities, communication, methods of production, etc. that are to be made. The future generation must not only know how to do what we can teach them, they must be able to go a step further."
– Maria Montessori, The 1946 London Lectures, page 140
"The little child’s first movements were instinctive. Now, he acts consciously and voluntarily, and with this comes an awakening of his spirit… Conscious will is a power which develops with use and activity. We must aim at cultivating the will... Its development is a slow process that evolves through a continuous activity in relationship with the environment."
– Maria Montessori, The Absorbent Mind, page 231
"How can one widen the circle of his society? To do this it is true that he must learn something. ‘You want to go out? Then you must learn certain rules. You want to go out of the house? Then you must learn to lead a simple life.’ He likes to feel that he can walk through life carrying on his shoulders all that is necessary to his own life. He wishes, too, to go out in the traffic in safety. So, the child wishes to submit to all the necessary rules for they lead to a better life."
– Maria Montessori, Citizen of the World, page 30
"I have observed that the child, on condition that he is granted the freedom to work, learns, becomes cultured, absorbs knowledge and gains experiences that become embedded in his spirit. Like seeds planted in fertile ground, they soon germinate and bear fruit."
– Maria Montessori, Citizen of the World, page 96
"The strength of even the smallest children is more than we imagine, but it must have a free play in order to reveal itself."
– Maria Montessori, Discovery of the Child, page 68
"The child must learn by his own individual authority... and not to be questioned in his choice. Our teaching must only answer the mental needs of the child, never dictate them. He must have absolute freedom of choice, and then he requires nothing but repeated experiences."
– Maria Montessori, To Educate the Human Potential, page 7
"Children should be made to realise that all great achievements in culture and in the arts, all sciences and industries that have brought benefit to humanity, are due to the work of men who often struggled in obscurity and under conditions of great hardship; men driven by a profound passion, by an inner fire, to create with their research, with their work, new benefits not only for the people who lived in their times, but also for those of the future. We must convey to the children the nobility of this altruism."
– Maria Montessori, From Childhood to Adolescence, page 63
"The chief symptom of adolescence is a state of expectation, a tendency towards creative work and a need for the strengthening of self-confidence."
– Maria Montessori, From Childhood to Adolescence, page 63
"This is education, understood as a help to life; an education from birth, which feeds a peaceful revolution and unites all in a common aim, attracting them as to a single centre. Mothers, fathers, politicians: all must combine in their respect and help for this delicate work of formation, which the little child carries on in the depth of a profound psychological mystery, under the tutelage of an inner guide. This is the bright new hope for mankind."
– Maria Montessori, The Absorbent Mind, page 15
About the Author
Jana Morgan Herman, has more than 30 years of experience in Montessori Early Childhood education, in both public and private settings, and has been a teacher educator in the U.S. and internationally for two decades. Currently, she serves as national director of Montessori education for Endeavor Schools. In addition to Montessori certifications, Jana has training in Resources for Infant Educarers (RIE), Montessori and Dementia Care, Montessori Applied to Children at Risk (MACAR), and Trauma-Informed Teaching. Jana frequently publishes and presents on Montessori philosophy and praxis, and is working on a book about Maria Montessori's writings. Outside of Montessori, Jana loves the beach and camping.