“If we are to create peace in our world, we must begin with our children.” –
Just in case you are unaware of this, The Witch Doctor feels the need to inform you about Italy’s first female doctor.
Her name was Maria Montessori and rumour has it that she might have gained entry into medical school because her name was misread as Mario Montessori.
She was the only female medical student in her year and had to perform much of her training alone and out of hours because at that time it was not deemed suitable for a female to learn about the intimacies of the human body alongside male students.
After graduation Dr Montessori specialised in psychiatry including the care of mentally disabled children. Subsequently, by observing how children learn she developed a method of facilitating the young child’s natural love of learning using special materials that she herself designed. Each child was treated as an individual. Her approach was for the teacher to learn from the child and “follow the child”
This is what she said of the child of kindergarten age.
‘Little children between three and six years of age have a special psychology. They are full of love. They are only without love if they are ill-treated. If they are badly treated their real nature is altered. They are full of love themselves and need to be loved in order to grow’.
But more than this – she followed the thoughts of Mahatma Gandhi – that if there was ever to be peace in the world it would depend on the children of the world. The Montessori method incorporates respect for the Universe, the Earth, Nature and all life within the planet. She believed that children should cooperate and care for each other rather than compete. The true Montessori classroom (and there are some imposters) is a place of peace, respect, kindness and individualism.
It is reported there is a doctor in Syria who sends his children to a Montessori school.
His name is Dr Bashar al-Assad. He also happens to be the President of Syria.
It is also being reported that more than 11,000 children have been killed to date in Syria’s civil war.
Dr Maria Montessori will be turning in her grave.
Dr Bashar al-Assad seems to care not a damn.