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Children head to Capitol to show benefits of Montessori learning

Dozens of young children lined the halls of the state Capitol Friday in an all-out effort to show lawmakers and the public the benefits of Montessori learning.

The Oregon Montessori Association set up a classroom full of 3- to 6-year-old children as part of Oregon Montessori Education Day.

Montessori schools educate children through more independent means by letting them develop natural interests and activities with adults to guide them, rather than using formal teaching methods.

“Montessori allows the child to direct their learning. They’re guided, of course, by the adults. They choose, according to their interests and their own abilities as to what activities they like to do in the classroom,” said Tammy Ulrich, executive director of Oregon Montessori Association. “It’s very much oriented on the whole child, the development of the whole child. So not only their intellectual development, but social, emotional, physical – all of those aspects are considered.”

Montessori education was developed by Italian physician and teacher Maria Montessori in the early 20th century.

Montessori schools have been in Oregon for more than 50 years.

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