SHOW AND TELL
Bring a thing that smells good, feels good, or sounds good.
Topic: Our Amazing Bodies
Our bodies are the most
amazing machines we know.
The value we’ll be studying is honor, which is to always do the right thing.
For science, we’ll learn about our senses and how the foods we eat help us stay healthy.
Outside, we’ll play human knot and touch blue.
The songs we’ll be singing are Them Bones, Brush Your Teeth, Lean on Me, de Colores, and Head, Shoulder, Knees, and Toes.
For creative dramatics, we’ll pretend to be an organ of the body.
Our art activities are X-ray craft, finger-print art, face mosaic, and body painting.
For motor development we’ll work on strength with gorilla walks, measuring worm, and frog jump. For motor planning, we’ll practice finding body parts in a game.
Every week in the newsletter is the enrichment curriculum topic of the week. These are activities in which the children participate over and above the standard Montessori curriculum. The topic you see listed is for the week coming up. Occasionally we ask you to bring in special items that would be connected to the curriculum. This curriculum was designed several years ago by a parent group using the criteria:
- Topics must be real-life, but not academic as in reading and math.
- Topics may be technical but it must be developmentally appropriate, meaning that even the most complicated subject can be presented in a way that a young child can enjoy.
- Activities must compliment, not duplicate, the Montessori curriculum.
The resulting list was the frame for what you see today. If a topic is interesting, we don’t shy away from it but present it in a way that the young child can take pleasure in learning. We have topics such as physics, geology, astronomy, and machines. Even the most complicated subject can be presented simply. For example, we do a chemistry lesson on chemical reactions where the children hold a piece of marshmallow on their tongues. They quickly grasp the concept of dissolving. Most of the topics last one week, but we relate the topic into general subjects that may go on for a month or more. For example, in the spring, we do a series on the work adults do. In the fall, we do a series on North America, including geography, plants, and Native Americans.
Within each topic, we cycle the motor development program through coordination, flexibility, strength, and stamina. Perceptual motor activities rotate through postural response, proprioceptive and vestibular function, and bilaterality. The special projects are cycled through science, ecology, safety, cooking, and manners, connected in an appropriate way to the topic of the week. Artwork uses three or four different mediums every week. In every segment are also songs and creative dramatic activities.
Teaching Manners – The enrichment curriculum next week will be teaching the children how to make a request and how to disagree. If our children know how to do these things, the adults in their worlds need to know how to respond when the children do them. Many times we simply don’t notice. Check with your teacher for what we’re teaching so you can respond appropriately.
Summer Tip – Warm weather is a wonderful time to do really messy activities outside with the children in their bathing suits. A wading pool filled with some liquid dishwashing detergent is great bubble play plus it just dissolves all the mess. Tempera paint, chocolate pudding, shaving cream, popsicles, and watermelon are a breeze to clean up when you can hose the whole area off. Get creative with pouring toys; make a funnel out of the top of a gallon milk jug, bring out measuring cups and spoons, put a little detergent in a bowl and use an egg beater or wire whisk to make bubbles. Sports drink bottles and spray bottles are great on another day.
From Melody Beattie – Gratitude unlocks the fullness of life. It turns what we have into enough, and more. It turns denial into acceptance, chaos to order, confusion to clarity. It can turn a meal into a feast, a house into a home, a stranger into a friend.