With heavy eyes, I read the same paragraph for the third time in a row. My last dose of caffeine was definitely wearing off. I needed to do something – anything – to push through and continue studying.
Yes, I’ll admit it. Anthropology 101 wasn’t my favorite class. I didn’t do all the required reading. The midterm was in 6 short hours and I wasn’t prepared.
So – facing these odds, what does an overwhelmed college student decide to do? Well… waste time on the internet, of course.
Keep in mind, this was way before the “always on” high speed internet nirvana that students enjoy today. In fact, I took great pains to muffle the squelching soundtrack of the internet connection with my coat; my roommate was a light sleeper. Ahhh, the good old days of dial up…
I sifted through a few pages and wound up on a site to register domain names. My inner procrastinator jumped at the idea of playing a game. “What domain names can I find that are available?”
In a burst of energy, I typed in common words, phrases and people with a .com, to no avail. Page after page came back with a red banner stating that the domain was already taken. And, then it happened. A green banner with a simple, pleasant message: Available. The domain? MariaMontessori.com.
As a Montessori alumnus through Upper Elementary, I was intrigued. With the last $20 available on my credit card, I reserved the domain name. I felt like I had found a secret wormhole in the internet. Doesn’t everyone know about Maria Montessori?
What Happened Next
Nothing. Nothing happened with the site for years. In fact, I almost let the renewal lapse in a particularly financially lean year. The $20 annual fee was hard to justify, especially when I had no specific plans for the site.
And – yes – I passed the Anthropology exam (barely).
I’m glad I kept the domain, however. More than a decade after I registered it,
MariaMontessori.com (MM.com for brevity) is now one of the most trafficked sites about Montessori education in the world, with a bevy of content produced by Montessori teachers, trainers and parents.
How did this happen?
The Spark That Started the Fire
While sharing war stories at the 2009 Refresher Course, many administrators lamented about our challenges with spreading the word about authentic Montessori, especially in the digital age. With so much misinformation online, it was a challenge to convince parents that Montessori was the best option for their children.
Does anyone have any ideas? What can we do?
I sheepishly volunteered that I have a unique domain name we could use…. and the rest is history.
3 Facts About MM.com That May Surprise You
- MM.com is sponsored by a group of Montessori administrators.Surprise! We are not Montessori teachers, parents or trainers.
MM.com is sponsored by The Montessori Administrators Association (MAA), an all-volunteer, inclusive group of school leaders from around the world. Many of us are Montessori trained (and used to work with children) and our role provides a unique perspective into the needs of all people in the Montessori community.
- We want to help youOne of the problems we see again and again is the lack of access to high quality, easy to digest information about Montessori.
To accomplish our goal, MM.com has a compendium of articles, tips and how-to’s for you to use – free of charge.
- It’s a collaborative effortWe are privileged to work with writers from around the world who share their perspective from their practice of Montessori at different levels. Their contributions form a digital portrait of modern Montessori practice, which you can use to better serve your school community.
Don’t Look This Gift Horse in the Mouth: How to Use MM.com
Although the content on the site is geared towards parents, our goal is to help administrators run better schools. Use the information to help parents better understand why Montessorians do the things we do.
Let’s face it, some aspects of Montessori can seem strange to people, especially in the light of modern culture. Why do we have a three hour work period? Why aren’t parents allowed in the classroom like the neighborhood preschool? And, is cosmic education some kind of cult initiation?
I know that you work hard to provide quality parent education about Montessori. Use the content on the site to buttress your efforts – as a second opinion of sorts – to strengthen any case you make about your practice.
How You Can Help
Did you or a member of your staff write a great article that resonated with your parents? Share it with us! Not only will you help further the Montessori movement, we will link back to your school website and promote your brand to hundreds of thousands of people from around the world.
Please direct all submissions of content to Matt@BergamoSchools.com.