September’s weather events have certainly taken center stage this month! After learning of the devastation Hurricane Harvey caused to Houston’s community, the children began discussing the terrible conditions people were facing and how they would feel if they did not have clean water, clothes, shelter or food and loss of belongings. A collective decision was made to reach out to the entire MSOC community to participate in a fundraiser to benefit Hurricane Harvey victims. A list of reputable and recommended charities was presented and The Salvation Army was chosen due to the help and support they give to the first responders who work long, hard hours and face dangerous challenges coming to the aid of Harvey’s victims. The children felt a sense of gratitude to the MSOC community for its monetary donations and what a wonderful group of children, who care enough about others that they don’t even know, to orchestrate an aid event for their benefit.
We didn’t realize we would soon experience our own crisis with Hurricane Irma! Opportunities for many lessons relating to The Winds, Seasons, Oceanic Currents, Categories and Names of Hurricanes were explored. These opportunities as well as the first two Great Lessons have given the children many topics of interest to explore and several collaborative and independent research, experiments and projects are in the works.
In closing, it was nice to socialize with all of you who could attend the potluck picnic and those who couldn’t were missed. Good food + Good people= Good Time!!!
From Primary B
For many of us it seems that summer ended on the first day of school. How is it that autumn is just now rolling in with all her colors and cooler breezes? The month of September has flown by, and the children are adjusting well to their school days, and have formed many new friendships. We have spent the month teaching the children the social tools they need to be good friends, and take care of each other’s feelings in the larger group setting of the classroom. This is something that we will talk about daily throughout the year, and hope that the children take to heart the importance of the golden rule, and make it a part of their lives forever.
Beginning of a new semester always brings new challenges for students and teachers. Along with the new friendships that are taking shape, they are learning new letters, words, numbers, theories...which can be somewhat stressful for the little big minds that grace our school every day. Some children need a bit more time to adjust to the experience of the changing environment and that is perfectly normal. We take extra time with these students to ensure that they feel safe and capable while they navigate the new terrain. The children have settled in nicely and have begun to find harmony in the classroom and accepting each other.
We have also been working on and mastering Preliminary exercises. Children spend a great deal of time, at the beginning of the year, on mastering these activities. Preliminary exercises are the basic movements in all activities and are designed to be purposeful work that lead the child to an understanding of their environment. The activities help children develop their hand eye coordination and fine and gross motor skills and guide the child to function independently in the classroom. In Preliminary exercises, children learn how to sit and stand from a chair, eat with manners, carry a tray and a pitcher, roll and unroll a rug, opening a lid on a jar, folding clothes and so on. Once they master preliminary exercises, children can focus more on the care of their environment and self, control of movement, and grace and courtesy.
“If teaching is to be effective with young children, it must assist them to advance on the way to independence. It must initiate them into those kinds of activities, which they can perform themselves. We must help them to learn how to walk without assistance, to run, to go up and down the stairs, to pick up fallen objects, to dress and undress, to wash themselves, to express their needs, and to attempt to satisfy their desires through their own efforts. All this is part of an education for independence.”-Maria Montessori, The Discovery of the Child
Observations begin this month. A signup sheet will be provided for you to claim a time when you would like to observe the classroom. We offer observations so that parents can see their child at work and in order to familiarize you with some of their tasks. Please come and observe us and see how your children are doing in the classroom. Please share your thoughts with us and give us feedback.
Thank you for the book donations. The books will help fill the new bookshelf that we recently bought with early donations from parents. Children will enjoy many hours of reading and learning from the books. Thank you again for all the support.
October brings crisper weather so please be sure to send your child with a jacket every day, one that it is clearly marked with his/her name and be sure to replenish your child’s clothes with long pants and long sleeves. Happy Autumn everyone!
From Primary A
Children find weather fascinating. Big storms, snow days and wind enough to fly kite all hold their attention. Hurricanes, one of the nature's most destructive forces, are particularly interesting and lend themselves to independent exploration.
Since September 2017 was the most energetic month for hurricanes in the Atlantic Ocean ever recorded, the children's curiosity of knowing more about them could only be satisfied by learning more about them.
With that in mind, the children of Primary A learned that Hurricanes are giant tropical storms that produce heavy rainfall and super-strong winds. That hurricanes are also called cyclones or typhoons depending on where they occur.
Atlantic Ocean- Hurricane
Pacific Ocean- typhoons
Indian Ocean- Cyclone
That they rotate around a circular center called the 'eye' , where it is calm with no clouds . Surrounding is the eye-wall; the most dangerous part of hurricane with strongest winds, thickest clouds and heaviest rain!
The children also learned that the Hurricanes are given names by the World Meteorological Organization (WMO) so that they can be distinguished. Each year storms are given names in alphabetical order according to the list produced by WMO and the name stays with the storm if it develops into a hurricane.
The most fascinating fact for the children was to learn about the 'Hurricane Hunters'- special planes that fly directly into the storms and drop sensors to measure the wind speed, temperature and air pressure providing cues to the hurricane's direction.
The workers had a lot of fun drawing the North American continent on paper with the surrounding Atlantic and Pacific oceans and choosing to decide where they would like to have the hurricane/ typhoon form in the respective oceans.
It was touching to have some children relate to the struggles that the victims of the hurricanes might be going through. That led to the discussion of how everyone around us can and are helping those in need. The elementary' s fundraiser for the victims of hurricane was a very good example of how even children can take the initiative towards such situations and make a difference!
In conclusion, I would like to welcome Om and Jacob to our class and hope that all of you are as excited as we are to have you observe our class next month.
Most children have settled in the classroom. Children are enjoying greeting each other in the morning. Welcome Colton and his family to our community. We have been singing songs about jellyfish (five blind jellyfish) and Butterflys. We see so many different butterflies outside our classroom.
“Learning to use the toilet is a natural process that begins when your child’s desire to be grown up and his neurological development have reached the point where he can control his bladder and bowels. We don’t train children to use the toilet; we support them when they are ready.”
How to Raise an Amazing Child
Once the child is showing interest in using the toilet, the bathroom can be set up to give the child as much independence as possible.