From Director's Desk by Ms. Christy
Eager young faces greeted the new school year with excitement and motivation to learn as the heat of summer continued through August at the Montessori School of Cumming. The classrooms were buzzing with activity in no time at all, as the children quickly settled into the familiar comfort of their classrooms. A few new children took a week or so to warm up to the world of discovery that waits in the Montessori materials presented with gentle patience by the teachers. Some children gradually changed classrooms and are now happily working with a new peer group and curiously exploring all the new learning opportunities. Now is the time for continuing to kindle the child’s intrinsic desire to do and know more by fueling the flame of each child’s intelligence.
Learning happens in incremental steps and always as a result of the child’s actions. Children may watch an adult tie a shoe a thousand times, but must take the laces in their own hands to master the skill. The child must want to accomplish the task in front of them. Children take joy in being able to independently accomplish the things that they observe adults doing every day. Perhaps there has been a time in your life when an opportunity to try a new skill was right in front of you-water skiing, piano lessons, running a marathon, or earning a medical degree. But, you did not act. Why? For the child, just the right amount of challenge must be offered, the fear of adult judgement and correction must be eased, and the task at hand must be something that the child desires to achieve. Through daily Montessori offerings at the Montessori School of Cumming, your child’s motivation will unfold and blossom, allowing the child’s activity in the classroom to continually feed their knowledge and fuel their curiosity throughout the school year.
Teacher-Led Parent Education Nights are happening Tuesday, September 27th and Wednesday, September 28th from 5-6 pm at the school. Elementary and Toddler parents will join your child’s teacher in the classroom on Tuesday. Primary A and Primary B parents will join your child’s teacher in the classroom on Wednesday. Each teacher will be presenting updated, relevant, and pertinent information that will enhance parent and child daily interactions and expand the parents knowledge of what is happening in the classroom. Childcare is provided onsite for both events. Please sign-up at the front desk. The teachers are looking forward to seeing all of our parents at this important event.
Happy Birthday to Jacob, Nash, Eshaan, Aryana, Anna, Kinsley, Arhaan, Kaelina, and Kaien! Thank you all for celebrating your joyous occasion with MSOC.
Toddler Class by Ms. Manisha
Welcome to all of our new families and welcome back to our returning parents! It's been almost a month; I can't believe it! The children have been working very hard every day with great enthusiasm. Washing the windows, making flower arrangements, washing their hands, washing dishes, and exploring the language cards and replicas are some of the children’s favorite activities. The toddler community also has a new hummingbird feeder located in the garden that has become very popular. The children are very happy when they see the hummingbirds visiting the feeder.
We would like to welcome Anika, Nitya and Juliet to the toddler community. The new children are quickly settling into the daily rhythm of the classroom. The children love their routines so much.
“The child who has felt a strong love for his surroundings and for all living creatures, who has discovered joy and enthusiasm in work, gives us reason to hope that humanity can develop in a new direction.” - Maria Montessori
Primary A by Ms. Rashmi
First of all, I would like to extend my heartfelt welcome to all the returning and new children and families. As you might have noticed, the beginning of the school year normally is and has been an emotional one. While for some it was pure excitement; some were consumed with anxiety and uncertainty. However, I feel we have settled down quite a bit in a short period of time, and the children have been reassured that they are in a safe, secure, and loving environment.
Time concepts are very abstract for children this age. They can't see time so it's very difficult for them to understand. How often have you heard your child use the word 'yesterday' to refer to any point in past? To a young child yesterday can mean last week, last month, or even last year. To them, yesterday simply means in the past. A child may even say his/her birthday is tomorrow when it's actually 2 months away. But I think we should appreciate the fact that the children have come to understand that 'yesterday ' means in the past and 'tomorrow ' means in the future.
We have started our school year by elaborating about the calendar every morning. Last year we started by mentioning the date and day and are now delving deeper into discussing the weather and seasons, as well as reviewing that there are 7 days in a week and 12 months in a year. Sometimes we sing the song for the days of the week and months of the year that the children learned last year.
Apart from the calendar time, there are several other ways in which the children get the sense of time. For example, following our consistent routines the children get to a point when they say, “We are going on the playground! “ “It's 11:00 o’ clock.” “It’s Spanish Day!” “It’s Friday.” The hourglass that the children use during snack time, the timer that they use while baking, and the process of walking around the sun that the children experience while celebrating a friend’s birthday also gives them an understanding of time. The actual Montessori clock material teaches the children that there are 24 hours in a day, 60 minutes in an hour, and 60 seconds in a minute. The children learn and understand the terms o'clock, half past, quarter past and quarter ‘til.
As mentioned in my previous newsletters, the children might understand any concept in bits and pieces for now, but for them to connect the dots, they will have to experience, wonder, and ask questions- not once, but many times. I am counting on you to provide them with repeated and varied exposures to the idea of time.
Primary B by Ms Jiyoung
Welcome back! We are glad to have everyone join us for another year of magnificent learning and awe-inspiring discovery! Please welcome Shawn and Kinsley, who have just moved up from the toddler community. They have started learning about the preliminary exercises in which each child masters the basic movements such as pouring, folding, and carrying that are necessary for success in the other areas of the primary classroom.
We had a wonderful Kick Off meeting earlier this month. It was really nice to see all the students and parents back in the building. We are so enthusiastic about the 2016-17 school year and have so much to do and learn. During the first few weeks of school, we are getting to know each other and are learning the classroom expectations for Primary B. The students are doing an outstanding job learning about the rules and procedures of the classroom. The children are already engaged in small group activities. The farm game and the addition golden bead activity have been a hit in August. One of my all-time favorite lessons to observe, grace and courtesy exercises will be practiced this month to assist the smooth operation of the classroom and the social skills of the group. Through the grace and courtesy exercises, children learn how to interact with others in the classroom and in society. These lessons allow the children to understand how to deal with conflicting situations and help them use the right vocabulary to make life more pleasant for them and for others. We are happy to be back with the students and are taking pleasure in seeing their creativity at work again.
We are reading books about manners and kind hearts this month. We need a volunteer to pick up books from library every week. Please let me know if you are able to help. Primary B is off to a wonderful start and will carry our splendid beginning with us throughout the year!
Elementary Class by Ms. Melanie
Welcome back! We have enjoyed catching up with one another and getting to know Tate Andrews who has joined the elementary community this year. To spotlight a few works out of the many lessons, researches and works already in progress; I’ll begin with how astonished we were to be greeted by an overflowing, abundant and productive Pollinator garden the children planted last Spring! The children have been able to observe caterpillars on the host plants as well as butterflies visiting the nectar producing plants! Milkweed seeds are being harvested as they explode from their pods!
Three species of butterflies have been identified by the children as well as
two different caterpillars.
The start of the school year fell in sync with the start of the 2016 Summer Olympics which began our study of the antiquity of the Olympic games! The children explored the similarities and differences of the Olympic games from their beginnings in Ancient Greece to modern day. The children liked the change made to the modern Olympic games that allows girls to participate in and watch the Olympic games.
The Great Lesson, “The Coming of the Universe” has been given to the children which aids to bring about an awareness of the immensity of the universe in which Earth resides and aids the children at the second plane to become aware of the reality outside of themselves. The idea of order. Every particle has its own nature and set of laws to follow which are universal. The children see these same laws at work today with science demonstrations highlighting each of the three states of matter which accompany the story.