Well, Montessori would advocate a scientific approach — observe what works and then emulate it.
Here is a very succinct article that talks about the importance of modeling (monkey see, monkey do), attachment, empathy, setting firm but loving limits, and parental self-control in raising a child that you can be proud of.
I found #5 to be the trickiest for me as a parent. My secret for turning my reactive behavior into compassion has been studying and practicing Non-Violent Communication, as described by Marshall Rosenberg. That and giving myself a minute or two to really think about how I am feeling and then let it go so I can calmly and rationally deal with whatever situation is at hand. It’s amazing how giving yourself a few seconds before responding can really be a game-changer. And it IS difficult in the heat of the moment but well worth the practice!
Hope you enjoy the article as much as I did: http://www.ahaparenting.com/_blog/Parenting_Blog/post/How_to_Raise_Great_Kids/