Congress Introduction

18th Montessori Europe Congress, 3 – 5 November 2017
Haags Montessori Lyceum
Nassau Bredastraat 5, 2596 Den Haag, The Netherlands

Children’s Rights
Each year we aim to choose a congress theme that is not only relevant for the Montessori theory and its practice but also for contemporary society. In recent years we had socialization as our theme in 2015 and responsibility in 2016. These themes – the competence to form relationships with others and the ability to take responsibility for your own life – we are extending to the congress theme of 2017, children’s rights.

All children from 0-18 have rights. These were first stated in the Declaration of the Rights of the Child in 1924. We are all familiar with basic rights such as the right to education, health, family life and freedom of speech. These rights are still unattainable for many children.

Not only should we as adults fight for these rights, children should be aware of them as well. In Montessori education the topic of children’s rights fits in with the principles of taking responsibility and taking care of yourself and others. How do we introduce children’s rights into our classrooms? What do we do to make children aware of their rights? And are children’s rights fully realized in our country and, if not, what can we do to improve this. And of course there is also the larger context of a world full of violence in which children’s rights are endangered. Can we do anything to help children in these bad circumstances? After all, all children want to feel safe and long to develop themselves in a trusted and challenging environment.

Hopefully we can inspire each other with our ideas during the congress!


3 November: a special day for Montessori Education in The Netherlands
On 3 November the Dutch Montessori Association (NMV) celebrates its centennial. In the morning there will be a special programme for Dutch Montessori Schools. The opening ceremony of the Montessori Europe Congress will therefore take place at the provincial government building, which is close to the congress venue.