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ERIC Number: EJ842775
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2009
Pages: 12
Abstractor: ERIC
Reference Count: 17
ISBN: N/A
ISSN: ISSN-1054-0040
Is Montessori Ready for the Obama Generation?
Powell, Mark
Montessori Life: A Publication of the American Montessori Society, v21 n2 p18-29 2009
When Barack Obama announced his run for the presidency, he seemed an unlikely candidate. Against all odds, he was able to defeat an apparently overwhelming opposition by relating to the electorate in a more horizontal, collaborative manner. What Obama did differently was to empower the new, digitally active, younger political class by involving them directly in organizing his campaign. He used the Web not only to inform, but to involve. To counteract ads of his opponents, he used tools such as YouTube to respond with depth and character. When his supporters used the same inexpensive, accessible medium to try to speak for him, Obama didn't attempt to control the message, but instead opened a two-way conversation that helped the electorate feel heard. These are organizing principles from which Montessorians can learn. The Montessori movement in this country has from the beginning been a grassroots campaign for educational change; if it is to become a transformative one, it must evolve a leadership that can amplify that grassroots enthusiasm with a more effective organizational structure and 21st-century tools. Maria Montessori recognized that children are the teachers of humanity, that young people, with their idealism and lack of attachment to tradition, can lead the way to a more human existence. She built that belief into the structure of her system of education. Until Montessorians in this country can collaborate with one another as well as they say they do with children in their classrooms, until they can examine their own curriculum and practices with the objectivity with which they observe their students, and until they can support one another in expanding the market for Montessori education, they cannot contribute significantly to this period of change in America. (Contains 1 figure.)
American Montessori Society. 281 Park Avenue South, New York, NY 10010-6102. Tel: 212-358-1250; Fax: 212-358-1256; e-mail: info@amshq.org; Web site: http://www.amshq.org/publications.htm
Publication Type: Journal Articles; Opinion Papers
Education Level: Elementary Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: United States