What they are and how they work.
The value is compassion. We’ll talk about feeling sorrowful for the trouble of others.
For ecology we’ll talk about how flowers are adapted to the environment where they bloom and what changing the environment does.
Outside we’ll hunt an Easter egg using the terms “hot”, “cold”, “warm”, etc. You could reinforce this game at home.
The songs we’ll be singing are Oh, What a Beautiful Morning, Zippity-do-dah, Edleweiss, and Yellow Rose of Texas.
Our art activities are marble eggs, shaving cream bunnies, bluebonnets, mosaic eggs, chicks, and baby ducks.
Creative dramatic activities will be to imagine Apple Seed John and what it must have been like in The Legend of the Bluebonnet.
For body development, we’ll work on flexibility using yoga poses. For motor development we’ll work on proprioception exercises with rescue team, crossing the line, boxcar push, and bat wings.
WAITING FOR THE CLICK
Every Montessori teacher recognizes the ‘click’. It’s personified in pictures of a child as she places the tiny top block on the pink tower. It’s that moment of epiphany when the face glows with the understanding that “I can do it.” As the adults who create the environments for our preschoolers to grow and learn in, our job is to:
- Prepare an environment where the child can function independently. This means to allow the infant to be unfettered by infant seats, play pens, strollers, and cribs. It means small tables and chairs, implements that fit tiny hands and stature, and quality tools like good pencils, real scissors, rakes that don’t break, and pitchers that really pour.
- Create spaces that invite the child. Materials must be available for when the child is interested, not taken down and made available when the adult wants. This means art material, intellectually stimulating books and toys, music that the child can play or turn on, and snacks that the child can chose freely. All that is available to the child must be artfully placed on shelves or tables and never be cluttered or overwhelming.
- Show the child how to do the work. We must show slowly and obviously, sometimes many times, how to achieve the object of the material. Mostly this is done with as few words as possible. If the child does the work differently from the way shown, it’s okay. If the materials are being abused, they must be put away until another time and another demonstration.
- Invite the child into our own worlds. What we enjoy or spend our time doing, our children want to do. Our students see everything, and they are driven to learn to function in our society. They want to help cook, do laundry, wash the car, garden, and work the computer. Our preschoolers have antennas about everything their parents say, do, and feel. When we react with enthusiasm to things like books, charity, and exercise, our children mimic us. When we react negatively to things like math, teachers, and other drivers, our children mimic us. If you want a barometer of your own actions, look at your child.
ª Be patient and stay out of the way. Montessori educators present material and learning many times and many different ways. Sometimes the internalization of true learning comes before we finish the lesson. Other times, the ‘click’ doesn’t come quickly. So we continue to present in other ways and we wait. Buddhists call this ‘click’ enlightenment, and they wait. So we wait and watch. When it happens, it’s a beautiful thing.
For Your Information
Johnny Appleseed vs. The Legend of the Bluebonnet – Still about thinking skills: In our Wild flowers enrichment curriculum is the story of Johnny Appleseed and we’re also going to tell The Legend of the Bluebonnet. The children will be asked to consider which one might be true. Why do they think that? It’s important that our children learn to think critically. For questions you could talk about while around the dinner table or in the car, check out Dr. Gregory Stock’s The Kids’ Book of Questions.
Parent’s Meeting – Our door lock should be installed within two weeks. The new lock will require each family to have a unique code in order to enter the school. As soon as everything gets uploaded we’ll announce a start date. Assistant turnover – Keeping long term assistance is challenging, often assistant teachers depart for reasons beyond our control. We look for those special people to join our team all prospective new teachers are interviewed by each team member before the group makes their selection. If you know some good people send them our way. Next meeting is on April 19, at 5P.M
Pillowcase – Regulations require us to keep bed-rolls from touching so we are asking every child to have a large pillowcase with their name on it to put their bedroll into while to be stored for the next day.
Dates for the Calendar – We’ll have parents/teacher conferences the week of April 23, beginning with infant class on the 23, and 24. The toddler class will be on April 25 and 26 ending with the primary class on April 27 – May 2. Graduation will be Thursday May 24, at 3P.M.