Montessori Does it Work? What Research Says About Montessori and Student Outcomes
Note: Our thanks to the National Center for Montessori In The Public Sector for sharing this brief summary of some of the growing body of research that directly or indirectly supports the effectiveness of the Montessori approach.
Montessori parents know first-hand how this approach to education supports and nurtures children’s development in all areas: physical, intellectual, language, and social-emotional. Scientific research confirms that Montessori children have an advantage not only academically, but also in social and emotional development.
Here are some ongoing studies you may find interesting.
Dohrmann, K., “Outcomes for Students in a Montessori Program: A Longitudinal Study of the Experience in the Milwaukee Public Schools” (AMI/USA May, 2003).
This longitudinal study of Milwaukee high school graduates showed that students who had attended Montessori preschool and elementary programs significantly outperformed a peer control group on math/science scores. “In essence,” the study found, “attending a Montessori program from the approximate ages of three to 11 predicts significantly higher mathematics and science standardized test scores in high school.
Donabella, M.A. & Rule, A.C., “Four Seventh Grade Students who Qualify for Academic Intervention Services in Mathematics Learning Multi-Digit Multiplication with the Montessori Checkerboard,” TEACHING Exceptional Children Plus, 4(3) Article 2 (January 2008).
This article describes the positive impact of Montessori manipulative materials on four seventh grade students who qualified for academic intervention services because of previous low state test scores in mathematics. The article presents a brief introduction to the Montessori approach to learning, an overview of Montessori mathematics, and an explanation of the Checkerboard for Multiplication with related multiplication manipulatives. Pre-test/post-test results of the four students indicated that all increased their understanding of multiplication. The results of an attitude survey showed students improved in enjoyment, perceived knowledge, and confidence in solving multiplication problems.