Remembered best as the founder of the Chicago Kindergarten Training School (now National Louis University), this pioneer of early childhood education penned such books as Some Silent Teachers, Montessori and the Kindergarten, and A Study of Child Nature.
Inspired by the Chicago-based kindergarten movement of the late Nineteenth Century, she took education classes in New York and St. Louis before opening her famous teacher training institute in Chicago.
She initiated an education conference series that was the precursor to the National Parent Teachers Association. Her memoir, Sketches Along Life's Road, was published three years after her death.
A native of Athens, Kentucky, she later settled in Chicago, Illinois. She died in San Antonio, Texas at the age of seventy-eight.
She was a friend and contemporary of social work pioneer Jane Addams.