SHOW AND TELL
Bring an item that might have been used on a chuck wagon.
(Think skillet, beans, firewood, etc.)
Learn about a custom of the Old West
The value is courage, which means to be brave. We need courage to try new things, to stand up for what is right, and to do our best every day.
For safety, we’ll learn how to be safe around animals.
Outside we’ll have a rodeo.
The songs we’ll be singing are Red River Valley, She’ll Be Comin’ round the Mountain, Home on the Range, Whoopee Ti Yo, and Deep in the Heart of Texas.
For creative dramatics we’ll name all the ways you might use a bandana.
Our art activities are chuck wagon, bucking bronco, bandana, and dancing cowboy.
For motor development, we’ll work on flexibility with yoga poses. For proprioception, we’ll do where is it, deep knee bends, turtle walk, and jug relays.
THE THREE R’S
The three R’s have traditionally referred to academics: reading, writing, and ‘rithmetic. In our Montessori environment with its beautiful system of equipment and methodology, we have come to take these things for granted because we know that they will happen. So the Montessori community is moving to a higher level of three R’s; respect, responsibility, and resourcefulness. These are big words for little people, but like our academics, we believe that no person is too young to learn. The tiniest infant is very attuned to being treated respectfully, toddlers thrive on responsibility, and four-year-olds delight in developing critical thinking skills. So how are we using these big words in the school?
Respect – Respect for others begins with self-respect. Obviously we’re the child’s first role models. If we handle our child gently and talk about what’s happening, that’s respectful. If we never “put down” anyone or allow anyone else to put down a person and if we’re receptive to both people and ideas, that’s respect. We also respect both our environment and the things in our environment. This might be a tall order for those of us who live in such a throw-away society, but if we ultimately want our children to not pollute and not lose their new laptop, we have to start today to teach our children to not break crayons and to sweep up their paper scraps from their art project.
Responsibility – Benjamin Franklin called this resolve, and his explanation was to do what he ought and to do it without fail. Wayne Dyer in his book What Do You Really Want for Your Children? calls it the ability to take total responsibility for what goes on in your life. Webster says it’s the ability to distinguish right from wrong, to be able to think and act rationally, and to be trustworthy, dependable, and reliable. Children learn confidence by doing and by knowing that you trust them to do. We can set up all sorts of situations where a child is enabled to succeed and where there is no blame if she needs to try again. The blame thing is a biggie for a lot of us. It’s not the traffic or too much to do or too much stress. If we can accept accountability for our lives, our attitude, and our actions; our little children will simply absorb that same mindset.
Resourcefulness – This one is the most fun. We want our children to be able to deal promptly and effectively with situations that are presented to them. Another word for it is critical thinking skills. It’s easy to skip over in a hurry-scurry world, but wait a minute or two for your child to (1) analyze the situation, (2) figure out what we know, (3) what are the choices, (4) what would happen if the options were tried, (5) take action, and (6) analyze the success. Given these few minutes, you can get a wondrous insight into how your child solves problems. Even an infant can figure out how to get his foot out from between the cushions or reach a toy on the other side of the coffee table. The parent learns to respect the child’s processing system, and the child learns that she can do it. That’s where we want to be.
For Your Information
Mardi Gras – On Tuesday February 28, your child will be coming home with a few strands of colorful beads, please know if the beads break they could pose of choking hazard supervision is required.
Singing Patterns – As we learn some of the songs that come to us from the Old West, we’ll be clapping, humming, and puffing. These are excellent for improving focus and oxygenation of the brain. They’re also great things to do in the car, as you wait for an appointment, or just for fun. Try it at home.
Go Texan Day – Rodeo Houston is a big part of Houston culture, and we’ll have our own rodeo at the school on March 3. A bandana works nicely as a costume. You might check out the Livestock Show as a fun family outing. They have different animals almost every day.
Parent Group – We were asked by some caring parents if a parent group could be established, after some consideration we decided to give it a try. The parents group is for parents to get involved by donating time or materials for upcoming classroom projects or events. To sign up email firstname.lastname@example.org List your name and which classroom your child is in. You will get an email on how you can support an upcoming gardening project for March