This Month in the classroom…
February was a short but busy month. As usual, our classroom continues to be very Cosmic with lessons and children working on different areas of the Montessori curriculum.
This month we welcomed back Mrs. Patty Paquette, in lieu of Going Outs. She gave a group of students a lesson about how the Native Americans came to our continent, and how they adapted and settled before colonization times. It was great to see the excitement in the children to connect their knowledge of the Great Stories and the Montessori Timelines with Ms. Patty’s talk.
Many students are learning how to do research, and we started with the Early Human Beings. Older students who have previous experience working on research are writing fabulous papers about different types of animals, whales, owls, tigers, etc.
Writing is blooming in other areas, including narrative writing, poems, pen pal letters and persuasive paragraphs. A group of students even wrote a letter to our director, Sarah Critchfield, to convince her that Valentine’s Day should be a school holiday. Speaking of Valentines' Day, sharing their homemade cards was an activity enjoyed by all.
In math, there has been much progress this semester already. Many students are leaving behind materials and working abstractly. Whether they are first-year students learning addition and subtraction or a full-cycle learning long division and multiplications, children are thriving. Lessons and follow-up activities on fractions are happening at all levels, from understanding the concept and nomenclature of fractions to multiplying fractions.
There have been many lessons on Geography. We continue to study the way particles behave through different science experiments, which become class-wide lessons because they are so fun and interesting that returning students want to participate even if they had the lesson before. We are also studying the composition of the earth and different lessons on the earth in relation to the Sun, like the effect of day and night, sunrise and sunset, the solar system, etc.
The 20 min of silent reading that we added to our schedule early this month has been a success so far; the avid readers have been working during the work period and using just the 20 minutes to read. It has also inspired other students to read daily, and it calms everyone down after returning from recess.
Another change to our daily schedule introduced this month is the weekly conferences. I used to have Student-Teacher conferences on Thursdays but, with 30 students, I could not meet with everyone in one day, so I have been doing conferences daily during the afternoon work cycle. I meet 6 students daily, and everyone is assigned one day of the week.
I attended the Annual Montessori Refresher Course during the President's Day weekend. It was a wonderful experience; I learned many new things and started implementing some of them. I found a new phonograms kit to help my emergent readers increase their phonological awareness. The materials just arrived, and the children are really excited to use them.
We said goodbye to one of our students this month; everyone made a farewell card for him. We asked him to choose an activity to celebrate his time at Cedars, and he chose to make an erupting volcano; I imagine many of you heard about the red “lava” flowing down, now you can enjoy it as well in the pictures ;-)
Student Lead Tours: Come experience being a Montessori Student for 30 min. Your child will be your amazing guide. Please sign up here if you haven't already done so.
Friday, March 4th, Spring Whole School Open House, we will be opening up our entire campus to allow current and prospective families to see and experience all levels of our classrooms, from Primary to Lower and Upper Elementary! We ask that you come without your child(ren) if possible. Child care is available; please contact the Elementary office to coordinate.
Observations are open! If you haven’t been able to visit and observe our classroom, please sign up here
Ways to help our classroom
Mountain Laurel Cottage