It was the year 1994 when the computer engineer Jeff Bezos had the idea of creating a new business model based on electronic commerce which he called Amazon. At that time, the Internet was a tool for the privileged, but Bezos was convinced that one day it would be part of the daily lives of millions of people and, years later, Amazon was already billing billions of dollars and had spread to almost the entire world. Today, Bezos is an example of innovation and creativity for thousands of entrepreneurs, but he is not the only one.
Around the same time, a few years later, two other computer scientists, Sergei Brin and Larry Page, had another brilliant idea: to create a search engine to more quickly organize and find information on the Internet. In just five years, the search engine they called Google became the most widely used tool for searching the Internet around the world. Today, the company is one of the giants in the technology sector and Sergei Brin and Larry Page are considered two visionaries.
Also added to the list of creative geniuses are Jimmy Wales, one of the founders of Wikipedia, the most consulted digital encyclopedia on the Internet, and the Colombian Nobel Prize winner for Literature, Gabriel García Márquez, creator of works of great literary value such as “Crónica of a death foretold”, “One hundred years of solitude” or “Love in the time of cholera”. Undoubtedly, they are authentic icons of entrepreneurship known throughout the world, but what many do not know is that despite developing in different fields, they are united by a common bond: they were educated under the principles of the Montessori methodology.
The Montessori methodology followed by Jeff Bezos, Larry Page or Gabriel García Márquez
The Montessori methodology is an educational model created by the Italian educator Maria Montessori. Unlike other models, this methodology focuses on the active role of the child in their learning, taking into account their individuality and rate of development. It is a methodology that promotes respect for all people, regardless of their age, which implies being aware that each child is unique and therefore has a unique way of being and learning.
For this reason, the Montessori methodology does not limit learning to a rigid and perfectly structured curricular program as in traditional education, but rather promotes a free, spontaneous learning process adapted to the needs and interests of each child. It is a methodology that tries to promote the development of imagination and creativity while stimulating the almost unlimited development of the cognitive abilities of the little ones.
In practice, children who are educated with this methodology can learn everything they are capable of assimilating since they are the ones who manage their learning from the educational media that adults provide them. Having complete freedom to choose the tasks and activities they are interested in doing, children are not only more motivated, but they can unleash their creativity, memory, attention and thinking.
In fact, the Montessori methodology motivates children to act and think for themselves while stimulating the development of their self-confidence and self-esteem. In addition, unlike traditional education, it does not work with rewards or punishments since its purpose is to promote intrinsic motivation for learning, that is, to encourage children to work and learn for the satisfaction that this brings them.
Another interesting aspect of this methodology focuses on collaborative learning. Montessori education considers that interaction constitutes a fundamental part of the learning process, in such a way that it promotes the formation of classrooms with few students, but of different ages. In this way, children can freely interact with each other, without depending on adults, while learning from each other.
The advantages of Montessori education that the creators of Amazon, Google and Wikipedia took advantage of
Montessori schools are often the perfect breeding ground for creativity and entrepreneurship. This was confirmed by a study carried out by researchers from the University of Paris V René Descartes in which they evaluated the impact of different educational methodologies on children of different ages. To do this, they were asked a series of problems to assess children’s creativity, ranging from making drawings with parallel lines and inventing a story from a sentence to thinking of different uses for a cardboard box.
The researchers found that alternative methodologies, especially the Montessori method, had a positive influence on children’s creativity, especially at an early age. In large part, it is due to the adaptation that this methodology makes of the learning process to the interests and needs of each child, focusing on individuality and promoting the autonomy and independence of the smallest of the house.
In this sense, collaborative learning also occupies an essential place as it motivates children to play a more active role in their own education while stimulating their social skills and helping them to become more open people. A fundamental condition not only to establish solid and lasting emotional bonds but also to integrate into the environment and better understand the circumstances that surround us.
Undoubtedly, another reason is related to the experiential learning promoted by the Montessori methodology. In Montessori schools, children learn in organized environments and materials specially designed to promote learning naturally. For example, instead of memorizing mathematical operations, children play with materials and perform calculations manually, which is not only easier for them but also helps them understand abstract concepts more easily.
It is an excellent way to enhance not only children’s logic and intelligence, but also develop critical thinking from an early age while encouraging children to stimulate their skills, discover their main passions and get down to work to become in people who want to be adults.