"Do we believe and constantly insist that cooperation among the peoples of the world is necessary in order to bring about peace? If so, what is needed first of all is collaboration with children.... All our efforts will come to nothing until we remedy the great injustice done the child, and remedy it by cooperating with him. If we are among the men of good will who yearn for peace, we must lay the foundation for peace ourselves, by working for the social world of the child." Maria Montessori to the International Montessori Congress, 1937
Deeply ingrained in Montessori's work and indeed her life were a yearning for peace, and a yearning to help raise children capable of realizing the goal of peace on earth. That is why Aidan will join many Montessori schools around the world today in recognizing the International Day of Peace.
Before we get to giving you photos of the event (though we hope you enjoy the one above, from yesterday's practice), here are some resources to help you understand our founder's and our method's dedication to peace.
- On the Association Montessori Internationale's page of Montessori quotes, you will see an entire section devoted to her vision, many of which are explicitly about peace.
- One of Montessori's books dealt with this topic at length (largely composed of texts of her speeches, which also often focused on peace): Education And Peace
- Here is a timeline of Montessori's life. She lived through two world wars, and her life and work were uprooted by the second. Nazis systematically destroyed Montessori schools in Germany, followed by fascists closing all Montessori schools in Italy, in the mid-1930s. Montessori herself fled her home and made a case for peace in countries around Europe, starting schools and educating teachers wherever she went.
Every day at Aidan, we work to help children find peace within themselves and with each other. To value and understand cultures from around the world in all their diversity. To understand human needs and how they are met by different civilizations. To take responsibility for the world around them and be gracious and courteous to the people in it.
We hope you find this peace a little more in your families, for Aidan's role in them. Happy Peace Day.