Montessori in India

This timeline of Montessori in India has been extracted from ‘Montessori in India: 70 Years’, released at the 26th International Montessori Congress held in Chennai, India on January 5, 2009.

1912 Saraladevi Sarabhai, a young mother of a baby girl, on the ship to England reads a book by Maria Montessori and is inspired by the Montessori philosophy.
1914 In London, coming across reviews of Maria Montessori’s books in The London Times Literary Supplement, and intensely involved with bringing up her own children, Saraladevi obtains copies of the books immediately. Ambalal Sarabhai, her husband takes her enthusiasm seriously, and firmly supports her interest in the Montessori method.
1921 Saraladevi and Ambalal Sarabhai pay a second visit to England and meet E. M. Standing, an Irishman and a Cambridge graduate who had studied the Montessori method in Italy.
1922 E. M. Standing comes to India and stays with the Sarabhai family in Ahmedabad.
1929 The Indian Montessori Society (Secretaries Gijubhai Badheka and Taraben Modak) publishes a report on the first three years of activity. The report highlights the need for trained teachers and the need for rural education.
1939 Maria Montessori arrives in India at the invitation of G. S. Arundale and Rukmini Devi and receives a warm welcome from the Madras community. The 1st AMI course is held in Adayar. Gool Minwalla, Tehmina Wadia and Khurshed Taraporewalla, later to be eminent Montessorians, are in the first batch of students trained in the subcontinent.
1940 The 2nd AMI Course is held in Adyar. Leena Sarabhai, the daughter of Saraladevi and Ambalal Sarabhai, with her son aged 1½ , goes to Madras to meet Maria Montessori. Maria Montessori visits the Sarabhais in Ahmedabad and a festive gathering is arranged at their residence.
1941 The 3rd AMI Course is held in Adyar.
1942 The 4th AMI Course is held in Kodaikanal. Devayani akka receives her diploma.
1943 The 5th AMI Course in held in Kodaikanal.
1944 The Sarabhais meet Maria Montessori in Kodaikanal. Manorama Sarabhai and Leena Sarabhai send Shesh Namle, Harprasad Bhatt and Tragunateet Pancholi for the first Advanced (6-12) Montessori Course to Kodaikanal. Later in the year Saraladevi invites Dr. Montessori to Ahmedabad and holds the 6th AMI Course (3-6) on the premises of Gujarat Vidyapith.
1945 More AMI Courses are planned for two different age groups - the 3-7and the 7-12. AMI Courses are held in Sri Lanka, Pilani and Gwalior.
1946 Education For a New World is published. An AMI Course is held in Karachi.


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