Dear Fox Tail families,
It's fall! In Fox Tail Cottage, we are acknowledging the change of seasons by introducing the calendar to our daily circle, and beginning talks and lessons about the lifecycle of plants, trees, and butterflies. Several children noticed that our fig tree has lost most of its leaves. Some were concerned that it might be dying, but Hayden reassured us all, "That's its lifecycle." We talked about how trees and plants have a dormant time to restore their energy for beginning to produce leaves, flowers, fruit and seeds in another season. Gianna told us that's spring!We thought of ourselves in this same way, and observed that we sleep at night so we can be "productive" during the day. We've been observing all the beautiful butterflies about campus, and discussing their migration. We're doing an art project which lets the children see, hands on, how they actually have 2 sets of 2 wings! How many wings do butterflies have? 2 + 2 = 4 wings!
We also explored the concept of an equinox through a demonstration with the scale. We used yellow beads to represent day and black beads to represent night. In the summer, there are more yellow beads (day time) so the scale would be heavier on the 'day side' of the scale. As we added more black beads (more night time) and took out some yellow beads, day and night became closer and closer to equal until they were perfectly balanced. That's when the equinox occurs and summer shifts to fall! Wow!! We'll do this experiment again to see what happens at the winter solstice...
“These words reveal the child’s inner needs; ‘Help me to do it alone’.” -Maria Montessori
As the days creep toward cooler months, and with jacket weather on its way, a new opportunity for independence presents itself! Here's a link to a video that demonstrates the "coat flip." With some help in learning how to be sure sleeves are out-side-out, and using this method, the children can effectively get themselves ready to leave the house or classroom in chilly weather. Excellent!
Here, too, is a link to an informative article which discusses the progression of independence as children grow and develop. It highlights some of the factors present in the Montessori classroom, which are vital in guiding children to become genuinely independent. These include order, the structured environment, language, and the importance of restraint and observation on the part of adults. Fostering autonomy is one of the most fundamental goals of Montessori education. This article does a good job of describing how the foundation for it is laid during the child's earliest years in Montessori.
Silent Journey is coming up next week. Silent Journey is a beautiful evening which gives parents, and even grandparents, a great opportunity to get inside the child's day, and experience what they experience in their Montessori environment. You'll also be able to visit elementary classrooms and spend time interacting with work across the levels. It's a lovely time - a truly informative, inspiring experience - and I highly recommend that you come!
The children so enjoyed playing in the rain! Thank you for sending in rain jackets and boots. Keeping them at school ensures that everyone is prepared, even if the weather shifts unexpectedly on days when those articles weren't worn to school in the morning. Totally worth it!!
Thank you so much, also, for all the snacks you've provided and the laundry you've done. The children love to share and contribute. Having the opportunity to bring in some snacks they've helped to choose, and being in charge of the laundry for the whole class, makes them feel important and valued. Thank you, too, because it helps us all out so much!