The week of December 10th

Parents,

This week we will be talking more about North America and one of the groups of people that live in the forests of North America, the Amish.  We will talk about the 2 main types of stems, woody and herbaceous, as well as do an experiment with crystals like frost on a tree.  We are still talking about holiday traditions and would love to have some parents come in and share a holiday tradition from their family.

Many people often wonder about the idea of having a 3 year age range in the same classroom.  It is something that is considered a hallmark of Montessori education.  Paula Polk Lillard, a respected authority on Montessori with over 50 years of experience said “The indirect learning that occurs among children is a primary reason for placing of children of different ages in one environment.  The youngest children are guaranteed models for more mature behavior than they themselves are capable of preforming.  The older children have opportunities to develop their potential for leadership and social responsibility.  This indirect learning occurs in the intellectual areas as well.  Younger children observe the older children work with material that they will use in the future.  Older children spontaneously help the younger ones with materials that have already been introduced to the younger child but which they have not yet mastered”.  It has been my experience that in a classroom with children spanning 3 years in age there is more cooperation as compared to a classroom of same aged children which can often have more competition.  Having a 3 year age span is one of my favorite aspects of Montessori education.

If you would like to come in and volunteer this week here is the link https://www.wejoinin.com/sheets/dwkjr

Have a great week!

Ms. Jen, Ms. Jess & Ms. Kimber

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The wee of December 3

Parents,

A big thanks to all the parents who donated items, time and showed up for our feast!! We appreciate all of your support.  We could not do this without you!

This month we will be talking about holiday traditions.  We would love to have parents come in and share a tradition with our class.  This can be something simple like making gingerbread houses or having a special breakfast during the month of December.  Please email me to schedule a time if you would like to come in.  We will also continue our study of North America this month.  We will look at what a forest is, introduce the stems of plants, do some experiments with air as well as talk about snow.

If you would like to volunteer this week here is the link https://www.wejoinin.com/sheets/mqtvj

Have a great week!

Ms. Jen, Ms. Jess & Ms. Kimber

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The week of November 26

Parents,

I cannot believe December is almost upon us. I hope you all  enjoyed  your Thanksgiving break.  This Friday is our Feast.  Your child should have brought home an invitation today.  If for some reason the invitation did not make it home here are the important details.

The feast happens this Friday.  The morning class feast is from 10:45 to 11:30 and the afternoon class feast is from 2:15 to 3:00. Family members of our early childhood students are invited.  In years past we have had the feast in our classrooms but this year we are trying out the small gym.  We have almost everything we need but there are a few items open.  If you have not had a chance to sign up here is the link https://www.trackitforward.com/site/389525/events

This week along with getting things ready for our feast we will finish up our look at the mountains of North America as well as talk about the different types of mammals and roots.

I have had lots of parents ask when they could come in and help in our classroom.  I apologize for being so slow to make this opportunity available. Each week I will post a link to a sign up.  This is only so we do not have 3 parents all show up at once.  Please remember to track you own time.  I really appreciate all of the help and support.  I could not accomplish very much at all without it. https://www.wejoinin.com/sheets/azcpn

Maria Montessori said “Do not tell them how to do it.  Show them how to do it and do not say a word.  If you tell them they will watch your lips move.  If you show them they will want to do it themselves”.  When you want to teach your child something new try teaching it the way Maria Montessori would have done.

Have a great week!

Ms. Jen, Ms. Jess & Ms. Kimber

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Ogden eletric lights parade

Parents

November 24th is the annual Ogden Electric Lights Parade. Our school will be represented and the marketing committee has come up with a float that will represent MMA.
We are looking for students from MMA who would like to be part of our parade! The meeting place will be in front of the Ogden Temple. The parade starts promptly at 5:30pm. The floats will be lined up at 5pm.
Students 12 years and younger get must ride in the trailer or truck. If you are over the age of 12 then you may walk next to the float. Students who ride or walk will be carrying white peace signs or holding tea lights.
If your child would like to be a part of the parade then we will have waivers to sign in front of the temple.
The parade starts on 22nd and Washington and then ends at 27th. My advice would be for our MMA parents whose child(ren) are in the parade park towards the end of the parade so when we are done you can find your child.
We have some, but if your child would like to wear glow necklaces and bracelets during the parade we highly suggest the more the better! (It is a light parade!) the glow wear is also our symbol to honor Troy and Molly Cox.
If you have any questions you can ask Autumn in the office or me- Ms. Kaley. I will do my best to answer anything I know

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Thanksgiving feast

Parents,

I hope all of you enjoy the week off next week.  Remember there is no school the entire week.  Our Thanksgiving feast will be on Friday November 30th.  Parents are invited to attend.  The feast for our morning class will be from 10:45 – 11:30 and afternoon class will be from 2:15 – 3:00.   We could use 3 parents to help get ready for our the feast.  The volunteers for the morning class will be here from 8:30 to 10:30 and the volunteers for the afternoon class will be from 12:00 to 2:00.  Please email me if you would like to volunteer. Here is the link to sign up to bring food items for the feast https://www.trackitforward.com/site/389525/events

Please let me know if you have any questions.

Ms. Jen

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The week of November 12

Parents,

Congrats to Ms. Jess.  She and her family welcomed Baby Emmaline on Saturday. Mom and baby are doing great.  Ms. Jess is planning on returning to school in January after the holidays.  Ms. Kimber will be filling in for Ms. Jess while she is out.  I know a few of you have asked about bringing in a meal.  If you would like to help with that here is a link to sign up https://www.wejoinin.com/sheets/jldlt

If you have any questions please let me know.

This week we will continue talking about beginning with the end in mind as well as talking about the story of the first Thanksgiving.   We will begin our study of North America and be looking at the mountains of North America.  This month we are talking about mammals and since we are talking about the mountains of North America we will be taking a closer look at mountain goats.  We will be continuing our study of roots by talking about some of the roots we eat and we will make root soup (potato soup).

Just a reminder that there is no school the week of the 19th. We hope you enjoy your week off.  Have a fun and safe Thanksgiving break.

Here is your Montessori thought for the week:

“What is Montessori?

As educators we get asked that question often . . .We ask ourselves, What is Montessori? Perhaps we’re asking the wrong question. The idea that there is a ‘Montessori’, one way to respond. . .one magic combination of ingredients that makes our classroom or school ‘real’ separates us from our authentic work.

When we realize that Montessori is a verb, an action and not a thing, we grant ourselves grace to grow”

The Tao of Montessori by Catherine McTamaney

Have a great week.

Ms. Jen & Ms. Jess

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Supplies Needed

Good morning,

During the month of November in our class we will have a couple different food prep works out. One will be carrot peeling and cutting, the other is cream cheese spreading on gram crackers.

For these works our class is in need of gram crackers and small bags of large unpeeled carrots. If you would like to donate these to our class please send them with your student.

Much appreciation,

Ms. Jen

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The week of November 5th

Parents,

This week we will begin talking about the second habit of happy kids which is begin with the end in mind.  As a class last week we wrote our mission statements.  We will be saying these at the beginning of each class to help us remember what some of our goals are.   The morning class mission statement reads

“We will keep learning. We will be friends to everyone. Never give up!”

The afternoon class mission statement is

” We will help our friends and others. We will keep working hard. We won’t give up!”

It makes my love light shine to hear the kids say these each day with conviction.  It also gives us some good talking points when problems and conflicts arise.  It’s good to remember what our goals are and what we need to do to achieve them.

This week we will introduce our continent and biome studies.  We will be talking about North America for the next 2 months and we will be looking at the mountain biome of North America this month.  In biology we will be talking about mammals and roots and in science we will be talking about measuring how much things weigh.  In art we will talk about tints.  A tint is any color that has had white added to it such as pink and grey. Our artist this month will be Ansel Adams.

Monday is an early out day.  This means that am early childhood is from 8:30 to 10:30 and afternoon early childhood is from 11:00 to 1:00.

As the weather gets colder I could not help but think of a quote from Maria Montessori. She says “Let the children be free; encourage them; let them run outside when it is raining”.  I try to take the kids out everyday.  The exceptions are thunder/lightning, red air, extreme cold (below 20).  We will go outside in the rain and snow.  Please make sure your child has clothing appropriate for the weather. I have heard it said there is no such thing as bad weather only bad clothes.

Have a great week.

Ms. Jen & Ms. Jess

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The week of October 29th

Parents,

I apologize for not posting last week.  I got back late from fall break and then by the time I had time to post it was the end of the week.  Here is a recap of what we did last week.  To go along with our habit of being proactive we read a book called Pete the Cat by Eric Litwin.  The cat gets new white shoes but throughout his day many things happen to those white shoes and they do not stay white.  Pete never gets upset.  He chooses to remain happy.  We looked at another set of land forms: gulf and peninsula.  We talked about different types of spiders and did a science experiment on why the leaves change colors. On Friday in art we talked about the artist Jackson Pollock. After looking at his art we went outside and tried our hand at making our own.  We have one canvas for the morning class and one canvas for the afternoon class.  These will be available at the Gala in the spring.

This week we will write our mission statement using several of the books that we have read this past month.  Once we get it written we will say it at the beginning of class every day.  I love writing these.  They are so powerful and help us begin each day with the end in mind!

We will be making maps of our classroom and your child will bring home a paper to make a map of their bedroom.  On Wednesday we will carve a pumpkin and toast the seeds.  Just as a reminder we will not be dressing up.  We will have a few fun activities in class but we are not having a party.  Please leave all candy and costumes at home.  Thanks for your support with this.  In art we will talk about shades.  A shade is any color that has black added to it such as navy, magenta and forest green.

I want to give everyone a heads up on an important date in November.  We will be having our annual feast on Friday November 30.  All parents will be invited to attend the feast with their child.  Morning class will be from 10:45 – 11:30 and afternoon class will be from 2:15 – 3:00.  We will also have opportunities for parents to help with the preparation.  I will give you more details as it gets closer.

 

At conferences many of you asked what their child does while they are in class.  This brings up one of Montessori’s core principles.  The concept of choice.  In a Montessori classroom children are free to choose what they would like to work on – within limits.  There are two basic ground rules: you have to have had a lesson and the material has to be available.  Maria Montessori said “These children have free choice all day long.  Life is based on choice, so they learn to make their own decisions.  They must decide and choose for themselves all the time . . . they cannot learn through obedience to the commands of another”.  In Angeline Stoll Lillard’s book Montessori: the science behind the genius she talks about the many studies that have been done that support the idea that having choice is a great benefit to education, learning and desire to learn more.  Let me share just one with you.  A study was done where children were asked to play a computer math game.  Half of the children were able to choose the name of their space ship that took them through the game and half were not.  The children who were able to choose the name of their space ship liked the game better and played it more than the children who did not name their space ship.  They also choose more challenging tasks in the game and asked for fewer hints.  They showed greater improvement from pre-test to post-test.  “Having a sense of control over one’s environment is associated with better learning and better performance in children.  A wide range of positive outcomes stemmed from a very simple choice manipulation” (Lillard, p. 84).

Many parents often confuse “choice” with “no limits”.  These two could not be more different.  The choices we offer to children need to be appropriate, direct and  simple.  One example might be “Sally which shoes do you want to wear today? Your tennis shoes or your sandals?”  Note that not wearing shoes was not one of the options given.  We empower our children when we offer them appropriate choices.

Have a great week!

Ms. Jen & Ms. Jess

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The week of October 15

Parents,

A big thanks to all the parents who helped out with our field trip on Friday.  It went so smoothly thanks to all our amazing parent volunteers.  We appreciate you so much!

Parent Teacher conferences are this week. If you have not signed up yet here is the link one more time https://www.trackitforward.com/site/389525/events

It will also be early out this week. The morning class will be from 8:30 to 10:30 and the afternoon class will be from 11:00 to 1:00.  There will be no school Thursday the 18th and Friday the 19th for fall break.

This week we will continue our study of maps, land forms and leaves.  Our leaf party will be on Wednesday the 17th.  We would love any donations of leaves you have raked from your yard.

We sent your child home with order forms for school pictures this past week.  School pictures will be taken on Monday October 22.  Your child needs to be in dress code for pictures.  If the order form did not make it home to you, you can pick up another one in the front office.

Maria Montessori often used the term “normalized” when she spoke of children and classrooms. The essence of this term means that the children feel comfortable and confident enough to work as if the teacher were not present. The children are not strong armed into following the rules of the classroom/school. They follow the rules because they have gained that control over themselves. Typically the normalization process takes about 6 weeks, but sometimes it takes longer. Over the next little while we will be focusing on a few components of this normalization process in our classroom that we want improve. They are: cleaning up after you finish a work and choosing to work rather than goofing off. Our goal is for the children to be able to monitor them selves. We want the children to be aware of the choices they are making and be able to evaluate those choices. One way you can help with this at home is to hold them accountable for their responsibilities. If they are supposed to clean up their plate after dinner then have them clean up their plate after dinner. Often it is easier and faster for the adult to just do what ever it is that we want our children to do but this does them a great disservice. We want to teach them how to be successful in society and that almost never involves waiting for someone else to do your job for you. I know that there are those of you who are thinking that this will start a civil war at your house. No one wants to engage in constant battles with their child. Sometimes this can be diffused if you involve them in the decision of what responsibilities they want to have. Even if you start small it is a start.
Have a great week!

Ms. Jen & Ms. Jess

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