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October in the Primary

                                                           

October is upon us here in the Primary Classroom and the students of Garden City Montessori are settling in beautifully. The changing of the seasons has brought about a big change in our students, and we see them become more and more accustomed to the culture of the Montessori classroom each day. In the past few weeks there has been a noticeable shift in how the students are able to come in and choose their work independently, and work for sustained and happy amounts of time. There is so much good work happening in the classroom including potato scrubbing, leaf rubbing, geometric cabinet shape books, metal inset monsters, addition booklets, and extensive work with the sandpaper letters and vowel boxes. It is so lovely to see the children find their way comfortably around the abundance of works and engagements. They really seem as though they are at home, and happy to explore the classroom each and everyday.

This month we have begun to delve into the topic of space! Montessori emphasizes a cosmic approach to education, and the children are enthralled while learning about their place in the universe. Their awe and zeal is invigorating, and each day we have had a new lesson on space, beginning with the Milky Way galaxy. This is truly a time to inspire wonder! Ask your child to share the “Family of the Sun” song with you. You will not be disappointed.

Outside the classroom, autumn has been an incredibly active time. We are so thankful for Ms Kailey and the time she spends in the garden with the children, digging, harvesting, and exploring. The falling leaves have been a huge draw for the children, and we spent time earlier this month talking about the changing of the seasons and frolicking in the mounds of leaves at our nearby Boyd Park. We have also had the opportunity to swim at the YMCA through our weekly swim lessons . The children have been so brave and courageous in their swimming pursuits. Overall, the class loves these swim lessons and are truly impressive how they work so hard to get dressed independently! Thank you for preparing your children each week for swim lessons and encouraging their participation. We could not do it without the numerous volunteers who assist with the walk and the changing process. Your help is deeply appreciated.

Upcoming this month is our Halloween Family Celebration on Tuesday October 31st. We will be singing songs and dancing with the ever musical Mr. Matthew.  See the newsletter for details!

Thank you again for all the work you do with your children. They are a delightful group, and it has been wonderful to witness their grow in community and exploration.

Sincerely,

Miss Yolie

By | October 28th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

September Happenings

Wow, have we had a great start to the year!  Our class is enthusiastic about learning and driven to accomplish meaningful work–and they know how to have fun, too.

                   

We kicked off our school year through team-building with Parks and Recreation.  The children had a blast using their communication skills and working together to solve many obstacles.Studying the Universe has been our focus so far this fall.  We performed the Big Bang presentation, shared various creation stories from all over the world, and partnered together to conduct research.  We invite you take a moment to view our bulletin board as you enter school. There you’ll see the students’ hard work; they are excited to share their research and findings with you!  We also just returned from a spectacular viewing at the Planetarium.  Please ask your children about it.

           


By | October 8th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Back to School: September with the Primary Students

Friends of the primary classroom, thank you for a wonderful beginning to the school year. It has been lovely to experience an incoming group accustomed to entering school with such ease and comfort from the very beginning. The start of any school year, especially in a Primary classroom, is full of lessons on the norms of the school day and the expectations of the classroom. Many of your children may be coming home talking about how they did “works” in the classroom, singing the rug rolling song, talking about their daily cleaning job, or performing some of the many songs which accompany our gathering circles and group meeting times. Some of the most sought after works have been cutting and gluing, table setting, the Pink Tower, bead stair addition, and the sound boxes.

The beginning of the year is such a precious time. We teachers are carefully observing each child’s interests and needs, as well as watching them make sense of their new environment and the classroom community. Thank you for supporting them in their joy and independence each day, as well as preparing them for all manners of upcoming fall weather. It seems like we moved right from smoke to rain! As a class, we really value our outside play time, so we strive to dress for the weather in order to be playful as much as possible.

In the upcoming weeks we will begin our small group afternoon gardening curriculum, Wednesday morning music time, and our Thursday afternoon reading groups and art lessons. More information will be coming out shortly. We thank you for your involvement and support. Please do not hesitate to communicate via the parent binder, e mail, or by touching base with me after school each day.

Thanks!

-Miss Yolie

     

By | September 24th, 2017|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Blog 2

Greetings upper elementary families!

We have had a very productive month.

Our classical music listening curriculum continues to soothe our ears and enrich our brains with knowledge of classical music composers and compositions. This month we have studied: Prelude No. 2 for guitar by Heitor Villa-Lobos, a Brazilian composer; two pieces by Antonio Vivaldi (Concerto in C Major for Two Flutes and The Four Seasons “Autumn”), and last but not least In the Hall of the Mountain King, a spooky favorite composed by Edvard Grieg for the play Peer Gynt.

I introduced two new language materials this month. One is a reading comprehension and writing response material and the other is a punctuation skills material. This work is done independently or in small groups and is leveled to meet the needs of each student.

In math, in addition to independent work with materials, we also continue to work on understanding place value and how to use “magic zeros” to simplify addition and multiplication problems. We have also done a review of telling time and counting money.

Our Halloween party is on Monday, October 31st and it should be spooky and fun. The students have worked hard to learn the songs.

Sign up sheets for parent teacher conferences will be posted soon.

We are taking a field trip to Atlas and Quin’s Grandparent’s farm on Tuesday morning, November 1st. If you are interested in driving, let us know. We will leave school promptly at 9:40 am and return for swimming lessons at 1:00 pm.

Lastly, we are still looking for ways to afford a computer for our classroom, so if you have any creative fundraising ideas, let Ms. Bev know!

Take care everyone! Thank you for sharing your lovely children with me!

Ms. Manda

 

By | October 27th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

upper elementary, blog 1

 

Greetings from the Upper Elementary!

It’s hard to believe it’s already October.

We have had a wonderful start to our year. Morning exercises have helped us start our day with fresh air and focus.
Our classical music listening curriculum is amazing. It was developed by David Brummitt and Karen E. Taylor. Every week we listen to a single piece of classical music each day. Before listening each day I read a different  paragraph of information about the composer and the composition. On Friday, we complete a written reflection about the piece.
The guiding principles of this curriculum are:
1. Believe in the power of the music of fine composers.
2. Trust in the value of repeated listening to the same composition.
3. Recognize the composer as a vital being, a creative person possessing skill and imagination.
Pieces for this program were selected based on their ability to speak directly to elementary-aged children. Ask your student about this fantastic music appreciation program!
An important part of our Upper Elementary experience is service learning. We have been fortunate to partner with the Montana Conservation Corps this year. Generally, our service learning outings will occur on Thursday mornings/afternoons. During swimming lessons, our service learning will be limited to the morning. So far this year we have gleaned apples and pears from neighborhoods in the Rattlesnake, pressed cider at the River Road Community Garden, participated in an ongoing City of Missoula revegetation project at Silver Park, and hiked to the “L” and learned about trail maintenance and invasive weed removal. I have been quite impressed with the curiosity, physical stamina, and polite behavior while on our excursions.
Inside the classroom, we have been working on math facts and advanced math operations, grammar, spelling, reading comprehension, mechanics of writing, and the big ideas in science (known as the 5 Great Lessons in Montessori education).
This Thursday, October 6th, we will be heading back to Silver Park to take a look at the native shrubs and tress we planted and make sure the plants are thriving.
Thank you for all your support! A special thanks to Christy Bradley and Betsy Milyard for helping make classroom materials! We are excited to have a computer in our classroom. Upper Elementary Montessori classrooms typically have computers to be used for general research, current events, keyboarding exercises and publishing projects. Our garage sale was not a huge success, however I am confident that if we put our heads together, we can brainstorm ways to raise money in order to purchase this important classroom tool. Please let me know if you have a brilliant fundraising idea!
Sincerely,
Manda Davis
Upper Elementary Teacher
Garden City Montessori
By | October 13th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

 

Greetings from the Upper Elementary!

It’s hard to believe it’s already October.

We have had a wonderful start to our year. Morning exercises have helped us start our day with fresh air and focus.
Our classical music listening curriculum is amazing. It was developed by David Brummitt and Karen E. Taylor. Every week we listen to a single piece of classical music each day. Before listening each day I read a different  paragraph of information about the composer and the composition. On Friday, we complete a written reflection about the piece.
The guiding principles of this curriculum are:
1. Believe in the power of the music of fine composers.
2. Trust in the value of repeated listening to the same composition.
3. Recognize the composer as a vital being, a creative person possessing skill and imagination.
Pieces for this program were selected based on their ability to speak directly to elementary-aged children. Ask your student about this fantastic music appreciation program!
An important part of our Upper Elementary experience is service learning. We have been fortunate to partner with the Montana Conservation Corps this year. Generally, our service learning outings will occur on Thursday mornings/afternoons. During swimming lessons, our service learning will be limited to the morning. So far this year we have gleaned apples and pears from neighborhoods in the Rattlesnake, pressed cider at the River Road Community Garden, participated in an ongoing City of Missoula revegetation project at Silver Park, and hiked to the “L” and learned about trail maintenance and invasive weed removal. I have been quite impressed with the curiosity, physical stamina, and polite behavior while on our excursions.
Inside the classroom, we have been working on math facts and advanced math operations, grammar, spelling, reading comprehension, mechanics of writing, and the big ideas in science (known as the 5 Great Lessons in Montessori education).
This Thursday, October 6th, we will be heading back to Silver Park to take a look at the native shrubs and tress we planted and make sure the plants are thriving.
Thank you for all your support! A special thanks to Christy Bradley and Betsy Milyard for helping make classroom materials! We are excited to have a computer in our classroom. Upper Elementary Montessori classrooms typically have computers to be used for general research, current events, keyboarding exercises and publishing projects. Our garage sale was not a huge success, however I am confident that if we put our heads together, we can brainstorm ways to raise money in order to purchase this important classroom tool. Please let me know if you have a brilliant fundraising idea!
Sincerely,
Manda Davis
Upper Elementary Teacher
Garden City Montessori
By | October 6th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Expanding into Upper Elementary

It’s official:  Garden City is expanding through grade 5 this fall. Manda Davis will lead our Upper Elementary and she is so well prepared for this position! She is a Montessori student herself, and has training and experience at both the Primary and Elementary 1 levels. In addition to her work in Montessori, Manda has a masters in Curriculum and Teaching from the University of Montana, and as begun work on a doctorate from Columbia University. Over the course of next year she will complete requirements for American Montessori Society Elementary 2 Certification.
In the coming months we’ll prepare a beautiful classroom space for 10 students. With 8 spots spoken for already, we are able to enroll just 2 additional students. This is an incredible opportunity for your child to become fully prepared for middle school via an outstanding Montessori education. The Montessori Elementary 2 curriculum is specifically designed to meet the developmental needs of children ages 9-12. While the work in Elementary 1, ages 6-9, is extensively supported by the Montessori manipulative materials, students in the upper elementary transition to more abstract thinking, utilizing books and other resources to conduct independent research projects which naturally incorporate language, math, and scientific reasoning. 
Children at this stage of development have enormous potential for intellectual, social, and emotional growth. The Elementary 2 program offers a comprehensive approach to meeting the academic needs of this age group while providing an abundance of opportunities to explore and understand the community through field trips and various outreach activities. Confidence and a strong self-esteem are defining marks of Montessori education this level. We look forward to learning alongside our upper elementary students as we launch this exciting new program. IMG_1619 P1130108 P1170960 P1170961 P1170976 P1170987
By | March 8th, 2016|Uncategorized|0 Comments