Lead Teacher :: Romana Fareed :: rfareed@mdpsc.org

Assistant :: Tomasa Ramirez

September 16,2016

CURRICULUM NOTES:

  • Language:
  • Students are introduced to Metal Insets which help them develop necessary muscular control for mechanism of writing, and also for art work.
  •  To make children aware  of the sounds in words, they are introduced to Sound Games,  which are also intellectual preparation for reading and writing.
  • Every day, in the afternoon, children  are given an opportunity to share news. This helps them to learn to express spontaneously and confidently; also sharing news helps them later on in reading and writing skills.
  • Children are learning Vowels and Consonants.
  •  Many younger students have been introduced to Sandpaper Letters and Chalk boards to assist in letter formation/writing.
  • Zoophonics is a program being used to help students learn phonics with animal characters, songs and actions.
  • Many younger students have been introduced to sandpaper letters and chalkboards to assist in letter formation/writing.
  • Maths:
  • Students have been introduced to Quadrilateral Shapes from the geometry cabinet.

  • The students are introduced to Geometric Solid Shapes.

  • The students are receiving specific lessons on categories of shapes in the Geometric Cabinet, starting with the shapes that have curved lines.

    Every day children are counting numbers forward and backwards with the help of the Hundred Days of School chart.

  • Children are introduced to the time clock.
  • Students are getting individual lessons on a variety of concrete math materials that will help them learn quantities as a whole and also help them understand previous concepts.
  • Culture:
  • The continents were identified by their names and location, and students are working on their own maps and doing Puzzle Map and globe work.

  • Children have been given a lesson on Land, Water, and Air. They enjoyed completing the project that followed.
  • Students have been given a lesson on Living and Non-Living.
  • Children have given a lesson on Plant or Animal.
  • Practical life:
  • We have been implementing grace and courtesy lessons, which help the children refine movement and develop social skills and awareness.
  • Practical life lessons are helping the children to be responsible for themselves, others, and classroom materials.
  • Everything we are doing helps the children in developing coordination, independence, concentration, and order.

Virtues of the week

The virtue of the week was accountability. Accountability is the willingness to take responsibility for our choices. In class we talked about how when we make a mistake we do not hide it or avoid it, but instead have the courage to face it and the lessons it brings. With accountability people can also rely on us because we are responsible for our actions.

Composer of the Week

This week’s feature composer is Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. The feature composition is the second movement from the Horn Concerto No. 1.

 

Calendar

Tuesday, September 20th – Parent Partners Education night – 6pm

Wednesday, September 21st – Early Release at 11:30am *Extended Care available

Friday, October 7th – NO SCHOOL (District In-Service Day) *NO Extended Care

Wednesday, October 12th – Early Release at 11:30am *Extended Care available

Thursday & Friday, October 20th & 21st – Early Release at 11:30am *Extended Care available (Parent/Teacher Conferences)

September 6th, 2015

The Montessori classroom for ages 2 1/2 through 6 years old is a “living room” for children. Children choose their work from among the self-correcting materials displayed on open shelves, and they work in specific work areas. Over a period of time, the children develop into a “normalized community,” working with high concentration and few interruptions. Normalization is the process whereby a child moves from being undisciplined to self-disciplined, from disordered to ordered, from distracted to focused, through work in the environment. The process occurs though repeated work with materials that captivate the child’s attention. For some children this inner change may take place quite suddenly, leading to deep concentration. In the Montessori preschool, academic competency is a means to an end, and the manipulatives are viewed as “materials for development.”

 

In the Montessori classroom environment, five distinct areas constitute the prepared environment:

 

Practical Life enhances the development of task organization and cognitive order through care of self, care of the environment, exercises of grace and courtesy, and coordination of physical movement.

 The Sensorial area enables the child to order, classify, and describe sensory impressions in relation to length, width, temperature, mass, color, pitch, etc.

Mathematics makes use of manipulative materials to enable the child to internalize concepts of number, symbol, sequence, operations, and memorization of basic facts.

 Language Arts includes oral language development, written expression, reading, the study of grammar, creative dramatics, and children’s literature. Basic skills in writing and reading are developed through the use of sandpaper letters, alphabet cut-outs, and various presentations allowing children to link sounds and letter symbols effortlessly and to express their thoughts through writing.

 Cultural Activities expose the child to basics in geography, history, and life sciences. Music, art, and movement education are part of the integrated cultural curriculum.

 

Benefits of Montessori:

Montessori education offers our children opportunities to develop their potential as they step out into the world as engaged, competent, responsible, and respectful citizens with an understanding and appreciation that learning is for life.

 

  • Each child is valued as a unique individual. Montessori education recognizes that children learn in different ways, and accommodates all learning styles. Students are also free to learn at their own pace, each advancing through the curriculum as he is ready, guided by the teacher and an individualized learning plan.
  • Beginning at an early age, Montessori students develop order, coordination, concentration, and independence. Classroom design, materials, and daily routines support the individual’s emerging “self-regulation” (ability to educate one’s self, and to think about what one is learning), toddlers through adolescents.
  • Students are part of a close, caring community. The multi-age classroom—typically spanning 3 years—re-creates a family structure. Older students enjoy stature as mentors and role models; younger children feel supported and gain confidence about the challenges ahead. Teachers model respect, loving kindness, and a belief in peaceful conflict resolution.
  • Montessori students enjoy freedom within limits. Working within parameters set by their teachers, students are active participants in deciding what their focus of learning will be. Montessorians understand that internal satisfaction drives the child’s curiosity and interest and results in joyous learning that is sustainable over a lifetime.
  • Students are supported in becoming active seekers of knowledge. Teachers provide environments where students have the freedom and the tools to pursue answers to their own questions.
  • Self-correction and self-assessment are an integral part of the Montessori classroom approach. As they mature, students learn to look critically at their work, and become adept at recognizing, correcting, and learning from their errors.

Given the freedom and support to question, to probe deeply, and to make connections, Montessori students become confident, enthusiastic, self-directed learners. They are able to think critically, work collaboratively, and act boldly—a skill set for the 21st century.

Calendar

Tuesday, September 20th – Parent Partners Education night – 6pm

Wednesday, September 21st – Early Release at 11:30am *Extended Care available

Friday, October 7th – NO SCHOOL (District In-Service Day) *NO Extended Care

Wednesday, October 12th – Early Release at 11:30am *Extended Care available

 

 

 

Week of Aug. 15th 2016

Our first week of school was awesome! Since the first day, the children are hungry to work and learn and have already started working diligently with the materials. We are very pleased with how quickly your children are engaging in the Montessori classroom environment.

We have been spending the first few days of school helping students get to know one another and become comfortable with various classroom routines.

In the first few weeks we will be emphasizing Practical Life Exercises.

The Montessori classroom is a meticulously prepared environment designed specifically to meet the needs of the child both physically and emotionally. One aspect of the prepared environment includes the Practical Life activities. Many Practical Life activities are tasks the child sees routinely performed in the home. They each serve a meaningful purpose as the child masters each piece of work such as tying shoes, pouring water, sweeping, or sewing, mopping, dusting, polishing, and many more. Through Practical Life activities, a child will also develop and refine social skills. These skills developed through Practical Life build self-esteem, concentration, determination and independence.

The student learns to take care of himself and the surrounding environment. Maria Montessori explains, in The Discovery of the Child, “Through practical life exercises of this sort the children develop a true ‘social feeling,’ for they are working in the environment of the community in which they live” (5, pg. 97). Additionally, fine motor skills are improved through use of the Practical Life materials. Through repeated tasks which enable a child to refine concentration, coordination, independence, and order, a child’s sense of self-worth grows. The Practical Life skills are an essential component in the Montessori classroom. Not only do they provide a link between home and school for the new Montessori student, but they provide a foundation for life-long love of learning.

While appearing quite simple and repetitive, Practical Life activities are highly purposeful. A child engaged in such activities demonstrates high levels of concentration, sense of order, and refinement of fine motor skills. Also, they show a sense of independence through caring for oneself and the environment. Furthermore, they show respect for classmates and teachers and develop a sense of pride. Not only are these skills and qualities necessary to progress in the Montessori classroom, but they are also needed as an individual develops into adulthood.

Practical Life activities can be divided into six main categories. First, are Preliminary Exercises which assist in creating routine and order in the environment and are prerequisites for other activities. How to a roll a mat, carry a chair, or how to open and close a door are examples of Preliminary Exercises. Practical life exercises also include Fundamental Skills such as pouring, spooning, or tonging. As with all lessons in the Montessori classroom, these activities follow a sequential order and ideally, each lesson builds upon the last. Another category is Care of Self. Activities such as washing hands, buttoning, or tying shoelaces assist the child to become physically independent. Care of Environment is another category involving activities such as sweeping, watering, cleaning, etc. Control of Movement is an area of Practical Life which encompasses lessons such as Walking the Line and the Silence Game. Additionally, social Grace and Courtesy lessons are introduced to the child.   These may include lessons on how to say please and thank you, interrupting someone, or introducing friends and acquaintances. Montessori stressed the relationship of these exercises to the general happiness and well being of the child. “A child who becomes a master of his acts through long and repeated exercises [of practical life], and who has been encouraged by the pleasant and interesting activities in which he has been engaged, is a child filled with health and joy and remarkable for his calmness and discipline” (The Discovery the Child, 5, pg. 93).

Varying types of presentations are used by the teacher to introduce Practical Life activities. First is a collective introduction given the children at once. This could include proper table manners, how to interrupt someone, how to speak with an inside voice, or how to turn the page of a book. Another method is a group presentation given to a small gathering of children. The last method of introduction is individual, given only to one child at a time.

Montessori believed the prepared environment is directly correlated to the child’s development. The classroom is a specifically designed area arranged solely for the children. There should be a variety of movement and activity and all work operates together through the disciplines. Montessori also believed in the importance of aesthetically pleasing classrooms. Children respond well to beauty, order, and quality in their environment.

Through the Practical Life activities in the Montessori classroom, a child not only learns concentration, coordination, independence and order, but also how to interact with others and gain an understanding and appreciation of the environment. The child begins to build himself from within while learning to treat himself and others with respect and dignity. These understandings ultimately prepare the child for entry into society and a lifetime of self-respect and self-worthiness. Practical Life activities in the Montessori classroom ultimately provide the foundation for success in all areas of life.

 

 

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