Stanford economist Erik Brynjolfsson writes in The Second Machine Age: Work, Progress, and Prosperity in a Time of Brilliant Technologies (2014,)

Montessori classrooms emphasize self-directed learning, hands-on engagement with a wide variety of materials (including plants and animals,) and a largely unstructured school day. And in recent years they’ve produced alumni including the founders of Google (Larry Page and Sergey Brin,) Amazon (Jeff Bezos,) and Wikipedia (Jimmy Wales.) These examples appear to be part of a broader trend. Management researchers Jeffrey Dyer and Hal Gregersen interviewed five hundred prominent innovators and found that a disproportionate number of them also went to Montessori schools, where “they learned to follow their curiosity.” As a Wall Street Journal blog post by Peter Sims put it, “the Montessori educational approach might be the surest route to joining the creative elite, which are so overrepresented by the school’s alumni that one might suspect a Montessori Mafia.”

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