November 2017 LOWER AND UPPER ELEMENTARY CONFERENCE MONTH*
13        Last day to secure Winter Package for Winter Break (contact office to secure)
15         Sign up for middle school and infant/toddler conferences
17        Autumn Market Day (Upper El/Middle School sell/buy and PIII may buy) 2-3:30**
18        Outdoor Classroom Event 1-3
20-22   GrandDays! (RSVP required)
              Primary 9-10 or 10-11
              Elementary 2-3 or 3-4
              Infant and toddler and middle school 4:00-4:30 or 4:30-5:00
23-24   Autumn Break:  School is closed

December 2017 MIDDLE SCHOOL AND INFANT/TODDLER CONFERENCE MONTH*
6      Primary parents sign up for January conferences

Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2017-2018 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

*Special Note/Conferences:  Central does not close school to hold parent/teacher conferences.  Different levels rotate out every three months.  It can be very hard to reschedule!  Please watch for specific information/times and places.  Please watch for a google document notification.  We ask that both parents attend.  

____________________________________________________________________________

Venessa’s Primary
Two third-year students work on the Continent Bingo game.  One calls, “Do you have South America?”  Two friends answer yes and put their markers carefully on their cards. A second year student works on the parts of the face in Spanish. “Ojos - eyes, orejas - ears”.  A younger student serves carrots to her classmates after she and a friend had chopped them up.  “Quieras zanahoria?”.  A student classifies land, air, and water animals while another is practicing “flip” with their coat!  

Toddler

While taking off layers of outerwear after morning playtime.  A toddler notices a sticker on a guide's shirt (I voted!).  The child moves closer, touches the sticker and then their eyes grow wide with excitement.  They've just remembered there's a sticker work on the shelf!   The tray is carried over to a table and the child gets straight to business, carefully removing each colored sticker and placing it precisely where they want it on the paper.

Pre-Primary
The students bundle up before going outside to play.  They are learning how to put on their outerwear- flip a jackets, snuggle into gloves, and plop a hat right on top of your head!  An older student works on the hanging bead work, carefully counting and recounting each bead to hang them up in the correct order.  And older friend from lower el. comes in to work with students on a math work. They have a younger friend  read a number and “fetch” that number of buttons!  

Middle School
In continuing a theme of Immigration, the middle school students are  involved in lively discussions about the Italian-American experience.  They are critically analysing causes and effects of various historical events.  What does this mean to us today?  Several students  are developing their persuasive speeches to be given on Friday.  There is excitement about the return of the history timeline.  A  student  chooses a World History topic and is outlining  the “who, what, when, where, and how” before entering the event into the classroom’s virtual timeline.

Amanda’s Primary
“One of our animal puzzle controls is missing!”  Oh no! One of the students decides he will make a new control for the dinosaur puzzle.  Carefully taking each of the pieces out of the puzzle and tracing it onto a sheet of paper, a stegosaurus slowly starts to emerge from the blank page.  After carefully tracing the words for different parts of the stegosaurus, the new control is complete! Students are gathered around  a table and deeply immersed in a variety of materials--fields of paint, swatches of fabric, sewable buttons--to make a variety of puppets, sculptures, and collages!

Lower-El
Students are creating 3 dimensional cards for their much anticipated GrandOnes (and a pet…).   “I’m making a pop-up card for my cat!”, “I designed my card like the example except mine says ‘Kind is cool.’ “.  Several students finish their study on triangles as their music lessons begin.  Two students finish giving a lesson on the parts of a skeleton to a third year primary student.  There is a discussion about the songs several students want to practice for GrandDays.  What a fun and diverse group of lessons and activities on this drab and rainy day.

Infant
It's time for the 11:00 a.m. board meeting over lunch.   A group of (very) young professionals gather at their table and open their briefcases (lunchboxes) which are full of very important work (delicious food).  The first item on today's agenda: Should naps be required?  One "board member" decides the meeting has gone on for too long, signs "all done", closes their "briefcase" and moves away.  Meeting adjourned!

Upper-El
Students take a survey on their favorite story from the book, Native American Stories by Joseph Bruchac.  After they have decide on the story of choice, they assign difference roles to friends to perform the story as a play!  Groups of students meet together to discuss business plans and company logos for the upcoming Market Day.  “This year, I will sell 25 pieces of my homemade apple pie!”, a friend says excitedly.
____________________________________________________________________________

**Market Day:  Upper and Middle School students may bring handmade items, gently used items, or store bought items they would like to sell.  They may bring baked goods and sometimes foods.  This is a Practical Life/Math study for these students.  They can form partnerships and must pay taxes.  They pay back any short term loans they make and keep their profit.  PIII (Kindergarten) and older students may purchase items.  Not all parents want their child to participate in this event.  We assume that if the child does not arrive at school with money, that their parents do not want them to participate.  We assure the children they will have plenty of opportunities to shop with their parents! 

 
 
 Please see personal note below.

October  2017   PRE-PRIMARY AND PRIMARY CONFERENCE MONTH*
29        NRC Run to the River! Fundraiser for Neighborhood Resource Center

November 2017 MIDDLE SCHOOL AND INFANT/TODDLER CONFERENCE MONTH*
6          Middle school & infant and toddler parents sign up for December conferences
13        Last day to secure Winter Package for Winter Break (contact office to secure)
15          Sign up for middle school and infant/toddler conferences
17        Autumn Market Day (Upper El/Middle School sell/buy and PIII may buy) 2-3:30
18        Outdoor Classroom Event 1-3
20-22   GrandDays! (RSVP required)
·              Primary 9-10 or 10-11
·              Elementary 2-3 or 3-4
·             Infant and toddler and middle school 4:00-4:30 or 4:30-5:00
23-24   Autumn Break:  School is closed

Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2017-2018 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

*Special Note/Conferences:  Central does not close school to hold parent/teacher conferences.  Different levels rotate out every three months.  It can be very hard to reschedule!  Please watch for specific information/times and places.  Please watch for a google document notification.  We ask that both parents attend.  

____________________________________________________________________________
Venessa’s Primary
A young student helps replant a thriving aloe plant into a new pot.  Three students weigh three different pumpkins: a small pumpkin, a medium pumpkin, and a large pumpkin--which pumpkin is heaviest?  Students make predictions.  Let’s weigh them and see!  A first year student is building the tower of cubes, while another is polishing a glass shaped pumpkin.  Two younger students watch in amazement while an older friend finishes the 45 layout.   “I did it!”     

Toddler
A toddler rushes across the playground, clearly on a very important mission.   "BUS!" the child shouts and points over the fence.  Sure enough, within a few seconds, a bus can be heard approaching the stoplight on the other side of the fence.   The child runs closer and waits there for the next few moments, identifying every sound they hear.  A friend peeks through a peep-hole in the fence and decides to join the game, identifying all the vehicles by sight.

Pre-Primary
Older friends work to put back together a tree puzzle, naming each piece as they return it to the frame--”trunk, branch, roots…”   Two students work together to find equal weights to balance out two sides of a scale, while other students use a screwdriver to tighten and loosen nails.  Falling leaves outside and happiness inside...

Middle School
The students went to see Marshall, the new film about the United States’ first African American Supreme Court justice.  Prior to this, they had spent the day journaling and discussing Thurgood Marshall’s era, and the important cases read when he sat on the Supreme Court.  In the afternoon, all of the students visited CodeVA and received a lesson on weaving.  They also visited several interactive websites designed by web artist Rafael Rozendaal.  A busy and fulfilling day all around!

Amanda’s Primary
A first year student works on the knobbed cylinders with a blindfold on- what a challenge!  A second year student is excited to have mastered the zipper work.  “Now I can help my friends with their outerwear!” he exclaims.  An older friend completes color box three.  All the colors are organized in gradients.  Other friends gather to see how beautiful it is.  “Like a rainbow!”

Lower-El
Students use watercolor paints to make large, poster-like representations of land and water forms.  “This is a canyon, but I’d like to write my title in Spanish, cañyón,” states a student as they begin their sketch.  A group of students play a describing game using cards of land and water forms.  Nearby, two students make a large scale map of their own “imaginary island,” called, “Moutainasia.”

Infant
Photos of an apple, a leaf, and an orange square have been placed at infant-eye-level on the fridge. The children are expanding their ASL vocabulary with some autumnal words.   An infant toddles over and chooses the orange square.  A tiny hand is balled into a fist and then squeezed twice.  "Orange," a guide smiles and confirms.   The child practices saying "orange" and then points to the floor cushion, realizing for the first time that it's also orange!  

Upper-El
Two students are researching endangered animals and the various reasons as to why they have become endangered.  “Environmental damage might be the reason.” Another group admires the finished product of a two-day project: homemade paper!  “It’s funny because the paper itself is very soft but the texture it creates is rough.”  Students select a “paper fact” and write one fact on each of the homemade paper pages.  A few friends create their own planets; inspired by last week’s visit to the planetarium.  They use colorful adjectives and scientific vocabulary to describe their celestial environments.

On a Personal Note:  Our PAC members and volunteer parents spent close to 100 hours considering every detail of this year’s Chili Cook Off. The thoughtfulness and effort showed in the happiness seen in the faces of our children and parents.  Music by Josh Small, musical pumpkins, cake walk, lanterns, hay bales, and 18 pots of chili!  Abby’s winning T-Shirt design...  Thank you for supporting this valuable event.  Watch for additional information from PAC.  

What wasn’t so lovely, is the shuffle I develop when I am a bit tired or after lifting anything with any weight at all. It looks disturbing but is a very small and not unusual side effect of a very effective, life-saving chemotherapy treatment I completed several years ago. I gladly deal with a (Not-In-Texas Two Step) shuffle, from time to time, in exchange for the joy of participating in many more chili cook-offs to come. I thank you for your inquiries and the concern you showed during this event.  I should have put out this bit of information much sooner than I did.  

 
 
October  2017   PRE-PRIMARY AND PRIMARY CONFERENCE MONTH*
29       NRC Run to the River! Fundraiser for Neighborhood Resource Center

November 2017

6          Middle school & infant and toddler parents sign up for December conferences
13        Last day to secure Winter Package for Winter Break (contact office to secure)
17        Autumn Market Day (Upper El/Middle School sell/buy and PIII may buy) 2-3:30

18        Outdoor Classroom Event 1-3
20-22  GrandDays! (RSVP required)
·            Primary 9-10 or 10-11
·            Elementary 2-3 or 3-4
·            Infant and toddler and middle school 4:00-4:30 or 4:30-5:00

23-24  Autumn Break:  School is closed

Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2017-2018 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

*Special Note/Conferences:
 Central does not close school to hold parent/teacher conferences.  Different levels rotate out every three months.  It can be very hard to reschedule!  Please watch for specific information/times and places.  Please sign up in the front office or email front desk to inquire about an available time.  We ask that both parents attend. 

Venessa’s Primary
A soft ‘hum’ of activity can be heard throughout the classroom as the students sit, focusing on their work. One student is so excited to have finished tracing their Africa map and is ready to paint. A first year friend is experimenting with how to trace a model of a spider web, while a third-year student traces a model of a skeleton, labeling it in English and Spanish. A younger friend is busy punching a “calavera” in preparation for a cultural study. Laying each out one at a time, a third year student displays the 1-100 cards in order on a numeral line.    

Toddler
A toddler crouches low, their face about two inches from the Bug Rescue Cup. Inside the cup is a beautiful spider that made its way inside on a plant. The child squeals with delight as the spider moves around. "What's that?" the child asks, but is too busy laughing to hear the response. The child asks again, "what's that?" and repeats the answer "spider". Another toddler comes over to see the cause of all the commotion. Soon the two children are sitting on the floor, trying to contain their excitement as a teacher brings the spider closer for them to inspect.

Pre-Primary
The class has spent the week scrubbing, carrying and reading about pumpkins. One crisp fall afternoon we all went outside to discover what was inside our pumpkin. A guide cut open the top and each student took a turn reaching their hands inside and pulling out a hand full of seeds and pumpkin guts. The guide collected some of the seeds to take home and bake. The students will enjoy a delicious crunchy snack next week.

Middle School
The overnight camping trip to James River Ecology School was a success! The students had the chance to explore the river marshlands on canoes and reflect upon their surroundings in sit-spots during the day. After studying fish caught in a net and released during the sunset boat cruise, everyone gathered together to eat a chili dinner, stargaze, and enjoy s’mores around the campfire. After returning to school, the classes attention turns to chili recipe research for the school cook off. The students decide on the recipe they hope will be carry them to the winner’s circle this Friday!

Amanda’s Primary
A third year student is working diligently with the thousand cubes work when a younger friend accidentally bumps into him, causing him to mess up his work. An apology is made and the older friend calmly accepts it. Seeing that the younger friend is interested in the cubes, he asks if they could restore the work together. The older student adapts what could have been a frustrating interaction into a lesson on forgiveness for a newer friend.  

Lower-El
In preparation for the Chili Cook Off, a student sets up a washing work outside to scrub the stone walkway while another friend sweeps the sidewalks. Wandering eyes are drawn to the “pumpkin patch” which has manifested in the circle garden on the playground. One student exclaims, “These sprouts are also pumpkins!” One pumpkin actually grew in the garden over the summer before rotting, leaving behind seeds that have now begun to sprout. “You can tell because the seed casings are still attached to the leaves” a friend explains.

Infant
A young infant is on the floor, having some much-loved tummy time.  In front of the child is a guide holding a black and white picture book. The child looks at each picture intently, kicking their legs behind them. Another infant sees the book and toddler over to join. The child sits and then leans all the way down until they're on their tummy also. The page is flipped and both children gaze at the black butterfly on the white background. Tummy time is always more fun with a friend and a good book!

Upper-El
After a rewarding overnight excursion to the James River Ecology School, students filed into the van once more to visit The Science Museum theater. Sharing the cinematic experience with a class from West End Montessori, students traveled virtually through space, observing Venus align with the Sun and the sixty-nine moons of Jupiter. After discovering dwarf planets in distant solar systems in the morning, students switched gears in the afternoon, designing posters for the various Chili Cook Off activities.

 
 
October  2017   PRE-PRIMARY AND PRIMARY CONFERENCE MONTH*
6          Infant & toddler Meet/Greet 6:30 and PIN 7- 8 (Childcare $10 per hr.)
7          RAISE THE FENCE DAY! For upper el and middle school.  V hours
10-11   School Picture Days (Children must arrive before 9:00 to prepare for photos)
            October 10:
Preprimary/primary. October 11: Infant/Toddler, Elementary and Middle School. 
13        Upper and Middle School Science Fair:  Share all of that good STEM stuff you have
            going on at home!  All students are asked to participate. Start now and have a blast!
14        Outdoor Classroom Event 9:30-12:00 Help us beautify our educational gardens.
16        Upper el and middle school parents sign up for November parent/teacher conferences.
17-18   Upper el and middle school to James River Eco Camp-Out!  Volunteers/chaperones    needed.  
19        School Picture Make Up Day (Children must arrive before 9:00 to prepare for photos)
20        Chili Cook Off! Hot! 5 pm (no Montessori Hour offered this day)
29        NRC Run to the River! Fundraiser for Neighborhood Resource Center

Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2016-2017 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

*Special Note/Conferences:  Central does not close school to hold parent/teacher conferences.  Different levels rotate out every three months.  It can be very hard to reschedule!  Please watch for specific information/times and places.  Please sign up in the front office or email front desk to inquire about an available time.  We ask that both parents attend.  
____________________________________________________________________________
Want to sign up to make chili or cakes for this year’s Chili Cook Off? Here’s how to do it!
#1. Login and sign-up on Track It Forward (let us know if you need help)
#2. Write your name and your chili or cake on boards in office
#3. Whip up something delicious!

SPECIAL V HOUR REQUEST:  We would like to have help from those who are strong and happy to do the back breaking work that leads to a sense of happiness and fulfillment!  (ok...we just need a bit of help putting a fence in for our new upper el and middle school outdoor space at 2001 E. Broad.) Stephan will get the big diggy machine thing and the fencing.  If you have an hour to give, we would greatly appreciate it.  Meet us at 2001 E. Broad St. on Saturday, Oct. 7th anytime between 9:00 and 3:00. Yes!  RAISE THE FENCE DAY!

Venessa’s Primary
The class is listening to a yoga CD and calmly following instructions.  The children follow photos available for reference.  As their bodies stretch and bend, they tell each other what animals each pose reminds them of, “You look like a lion!” “Look! I’m a snake!”  One guide searches with a couple students to find the perfect space on the wall to hang their completed maps of North America, continuing the year-long study.  One of the students hanging their map notices a friend who has been sitting calmly and quietly for a long time.  “What are you working on?” The sitting friend proudly displays their sewing work, exclaiming, “A button!”

Toddler
As the first student of the day arrives, they walk into their classroom and, amidst enthusiastic greetings from their friends, restore their tote and lunchbox.  Directly to the sink they go, whispering to themselves, “Wash hands, make bubbles.”  After the ever-important routine of washing hands, the child decides to water the nearby plant.  Uh-oh! A small amount of water has sloshed out of the carefully filled watering can!  The young friend gently places the watering can beside the plant, walks over to a shelf, and retrieves a washcloth.  “Wipe up the water, wipe up the water,” chants the student, reminding themselves of the task at hand.  Once the towel is in the dirty-laundry hamper, the child beams proudly, knowing that they completed their first morning work!

Pre-Primary
A few friends gather outside to explore a new water work.  The students carefully practice transferring water from one bucket to the next.  While the other students patiently wait their turn for the exciting new work, they continue to work hard.  An older student helps a younger friend work on their numbers by having them use their fingers to trace the numbers, and repeating the numbers aloud.  A student sits at a table and works hard to create a beautiful piece of art, using an okra pod as their paintbrush!

Middle School
The students have logged onto their Google Classroom to find an assignment to be completed: rating the various causes and effects of the Greenhouse Effect.  With influences and consequences in mind, the remainder of the school day is dedicated to brainstorming and organizing science experiments for our upcoming Science Fair.

Amanda’s Primary
Small bands of bright orange appear above the soil line of one of Central’s gardens.  Above the orange--long, fluffy tufts of bright green make excellent handles for small hands.  Each of the students has a chance to come out to the garden and have a small lesson about pulling up carrots!  “It looks just like the big one we painted in the office!” exclaims one eager friend.  “Except much smaller,” notices another.  After all the gathered carrots have been washed and chopped by the class, they join other fresh, colorful veggies for a beautiful Daily Soup salad.

Lower-El
Students kick off their week making continents maps. In groups, they shuffle through the map boards, deciding which one they want to construct. By mid-week, nearly every student begins their work cycle with a map: North America, Europe, Asia, Australia!  A third year student helps a younger friend paper clip their tracing paper, as they set up an atlas for their own labels.  “I’m going to draw in the States’ birds!”  The collective consciousness of the Elementary classroom is full and rich with interest in maps.

Infant
Fall is in the air! Our littlest friends are making beautiful artwork with their tiny handprints.  After their careful guides help them dip their hands in red paint, they press them onto autumn-colored paper.  Add a torn piece of green paper and voila! A delicious red apple!  On another piece of paper, a leafless tree awaits its colorful accessories; scores of red, yellow, and orange fingerprints make crispy fall leaves, both on the branches and littering the “ground.”  Art is truly imitating life!

Upper-El
Students sit across from each other, quizzing their peers on state capitals.  “Providence is the capital of…?”  “Rhode Island! The capital of Montana is…?”  “Helena!”  While these friends continue to test their skills, others use new materials to make their maps of the North America.  Dark, opaque ink make up the outlines, while whimsically pale, translucent watercolors fill in the negative spaces.  A beautiful contrast!  Other students help their Lower El friends chop up dozens of tomatoes for Friday’s Spaghetti Day.  Today, the sauce.  Tomorrow, the eggplant, squash, and zucchini noodles!

 
 
September 2017
25        Fall Farm Share Daily Soup payment drive:  Keep an eye out for a large orange “carrot”!
29         Lower el parent Meet/Greet 6:30 and PIN 7-8 (childcare-$10 per hr.)

October  2017   PRE-PRIMARY AND PRIMARY CONFERENCE MONTH*
6           Infant & toddler Meet/Greet 6:30 and PIN 7- 8 (Childcare $10 per hr.)
10-11   School Picture Day (Children must arrive before 9:00 to prepare for photos)
13        Upper and Middle School Science Fair:  Share all of that good STEM stuff you have going on at home!              All students are asked to participate.  Start now and have a blast!
14        Outdoor Classroom Event 9:30-12:00 Help us beautify our educational gardens.
16        Upper el and middle school parents sign up for November parent/teacher conferences.
17-18  Upper el and middle school to James River Eco Camp-Out!  Volunteers/chaperones  needed.  

Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2016-2017 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

*Special Note/Conferences:  Central does not close school to hold parent/teacher conferences.  Different levels rotate out every three months.  It can be very hard to reschedule!  Please watch for specific information/times and places.  Please sign up in the front office or email front desk to inquire about an available time.  We ask that both parents attend.  

Venessa’s Primary
The first student of the day decides to begin their work cycle with a North American map for Continent Day.  They are excited to complete Canada because it is so large!  As more friends trickle in, a second year student walks carefully around their friend’s work-rug towards the math shelf for banking.  A first year student, who has never worked on a puzzle before, completes it with ease.  Two students prepare for the International Day of Peace by singing the Peace Song to each other.

Toddler
Three toddlers on the playground spy our older elementary and middle school friends "Running in Circles" at Jefferson Park in the cool morning air.   Deciding that this looks like a nice way to start the day, one child begins to run laps around the playground.   In short order, the other two friends join in and the whole gang is jogging and laughing together.   When their jog is over, the children enjoy a nice cool down by sitting to drink a cup of water.

Pre-Primary
Feats of strength!  Two students take turns carrying a large pumpkin across the room and carefully place it in a square on the ground, how precise!  Meanwhile, a student chooses a cutting work from the art shelf.  She carefully uses the scissors to cut strips of vibrantly colored paper.  Another student focuses on sorting like-colored objects into different piles.  The student then correctly identifies the red, blue, and yellow objects to a teacher.

Middle School
One brave student volunteers to be our first news anchor for Current Events, delivering updates about the recent global natural disasters to the rest of the class.  Then, each student drafts a letter to a recent guest lecturer from American University, thanking the professor for the generous lesson on fractals from last week.  Later in the day, the students expand their understanding of syntax by diagramming sentences with combined effort.

Amanda’s Primary
There are leftover potatoes in the daily soup basket.  A teacher cuts one in half, and from the two halves she carves a peace sign and a heart.  With red and blue paints, the potatoes become stamps to create the universal symbols for peace and love.  As the students make beautiful peace-themed art work, some of the paints blend togeher and a first year student exclaims, “red and blue can make purple!”  With color and tranquility filling the room, the students are ready and excited for this Sunday’s Three Park Walk for Peace!

Lower-El
Lower El students join their peers around a candle to sing “Light a Candle for Peace” to celebrate the International Day of Peace. Some students smile, a few hold hands, and one wraps their arms around their younger sibling.  As the other classes disperse, the Lower El class returns to their morning work cycle as well.  Everyday needs a pause for peace.

Infant
Ice cream in the morning?  At Central?!  Okay, not really.   An infant sits on the playground with a small, blue ice cream scoop, serving up bowls of "mulch cream" to friends.   The child puts one scoop in a bowl, then another, then one more.   Once the bowl is full, the child looks around, smiling, to offer this "tasty treat" to a nearby friend.  The friend dumps their bowl on the playground and hands the empty bowl back to the "mulch cream" scooper.

Upper-El
Students slice and chop fresh vegetables into small pieces, while other friends measure the amounts and keep track of what has been added.  Roasted corn, tomatoes, green peppers, onion, and fresh herbs comes together to make a deliciously aromatic pico de gallo salsa for Daily Soup.  Upper El joins Middle School on an excursion to Patrick Henry Park.  Bouncy balls are dispersed and partners line up in a peaceful and cooperative exercise of bouncing the ball back and forth.  Can your partner catch the ball after just one bounce?

 
 
 There is so much going on right now that I thought it best to send out a tiny little Montessori Moment to keep everyone informed.

Liz
First things first. Liz stopped by and is in good spirits and misses everyone.  I shared your kind wishes for a quick recovery.  She is still in the process of evaluation.  We will be certain to keep you informed.  (Thanks, Alicia!)

Parent Information Nights (PIN) 6:30-8:00
These are wonderful parent get-togethers.  Teachers and parents spend a bit of time in a pre-meeting mixer and tour classrooms (good refreshments too!)  We then spend a bit of time discussing Central programming, Montessori philosophy, child development and/or parent/home considerations.  Parents support other parents and teachers share what they know.  Attending parents receive V hour credit as well.  Central offers childcare ($10.00 an hour).  Contact us if you would like childcare.  
  1. Pre-Primary/Primary:  Sept. 8th Focus:  Developmental Stages-Benefits of each and how to be support your child during each stage.  Wow!
  2. Upper El and Middle School:  Sept. 15th Meet at 2001 E. Broad Street.   Focus:  STEM
  3. Lower El:  Sept. 29th  Focus:  What’s up with all the Kissing?  (Sounds...interesting….)
  4. Infant and Toddler: Oct. 6th Focus:  What are the 3 gifts?
Special Note:  If your child is possibly eligible to transition from one level to another during the Winter Break, (turning 6, 9 or 11 years old between September 30th and the end of December), please attend the PIN events for the next level PIN if possible.  Much information and great time to meet/reunite with parents and teachers...

Coffee and Kids
The coffee isn’t for the kids!  It’s for our new parents!  If you are new to our Central Montessori School Community, then stop by for a bit.  Bridgette Huff, I-Nubia Reid and Theresa Ronquillo are hosting this casual Jefferson Park event for our newest families. Did we mention there might be coffee?   

Special Staff Happenings
Studio 5 is currently exhibiting Oura’s art work!  It is lovely and whimsical. Your children will love it!

Alicia Strum has work on display at Art 180.  If you have time, be inspired by the work Alicia did with Richmond City students and their book designs.  Lovely.

Trey Pollard is featured in this week’s Style magazine and his work with Richmond City Orchestra.  It seems that is is all “music’ to the ears.  Read about one of his many wonderful contributions.  

Read below the wonderful invitation from Heidi Ruggs (one of our newest parents).  I hope to see you and your children there!  

 
 
Montessori Moments 6-9-17

Middle School
A “man with enormous wings”, who is actually a student in costume, emits a howl of pain. People surround him. “ He’s no angel!” The middle schoolers are practicing for their end of the year performance. The students are working on memorizing lines and learning stage directions. Some students start to notices things in the script that they want to change and last minute edits are made. Period costumes are being perfected...

Upper Elementary
Students review dividing fractions with whole numbers and offer to give a lesson to a special visitor. Nurseries are researched for locating a tree to plant in the playground. What size hole needs to be dug for a 15 gallon container? How tall is the tree? Is it self fruiting? Does a Chinese Fringe Tree have ovate leaves? Is it native and organic?  Children and teacher are off to Sneed's Nursery to learn more and price trees.  A list is created as the year is reminisced with many contributions from families.

Venessa’s Primary
The students are buzzing with the excitement of their wonderful performance the day before. Two third year students work on the cube chain of 8. “I found 104!” A second year student is busy making a book of rhyming words. Two first year students label our picnic basket work in Spanish: lemonade:limonada! A first year student is working on “living and nonliving.” A second year student reads words built with the moveable alphabet like,”pin, tin, hat, mat, sun, and fun.”  They rhyme!  That makes it even easier to read.  


Lower Elementary
The gigantic rain-forest that was built for the end of year performance has been reduced to a pile of paper link vines. Two students have tallied 787 links. They find that that number divided by the students in the class would give each student a chain 26 links long. What a great souvenir for such an awesome performance! Many students fill their morning work cycle with animal studies. One large group is intent on researching different dog breeds. Their detailed pictures really highlight the differences between each type.

Infant
The entire class watches with anticipation as one of our infant friends takes her first steps. This is our second friend in two weeks to accomplish this daring feat. Another infant chooses a puzzle work and stares, wondering how it works. An older student who has been shown how to use it comes to his aid, modeling the process. The weather has been lovely for spending time outside and learning singalongs. ‘Down By the Bay’ and ‘The Smile Song’ are big hits that light up the childrens’ faces.

Toddler
A walking infant is visiting the toddler class and stretches tall, attempting to restore her lunch box. A toddler friend approaches and asks, “You want help?” The infant drops the lunch box and nods emphatically, “Yes!” and watches as the friend carefully hangs the lunch box on the hook.

Amanda’s Primary
Maps have taken over the classroom this morning. Everyone is concentrating on creating their own large paper maps. Students can be seen working with  maps of countries all over the world: South America, Africa and even Asia. Topic of discussion for today’s groups is conflict resolution. Students give different ideas on how they can resolve a conflict. The most common solution was talking to the friend and the most liked idea was just ignore an slight and keep right on working! Good solutions.  Yes?


Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2016-2017 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

Families may order yearbooks now at www.squareup.com/store/cms-rva

June is Middle School and Upper El Conference Month

June 9 RSVP with food order for End of the Year Celebration

June 9  Upper el. End of the Year Play 6:00 Pizza dinner is being provided! Thanks, Montsi!

June 10  Outdoor Classroom Event 9:30-12:00

June 15 Middle School End of the Year Play  7:00

June 16 End of the Year Celebration and Honey Pot Awards 5:00

June 19 Yearbook Signing Day:   Students are given their yearbooks.  They invite their friends and teachers to sign them!  Signing Day is a big event full of happiness and laughter.  Watch for yearbook order forms.

June 26  Last Day of School before Summer Break

June 27-30 Facility Work Week:  School is closed

July 3  Facility Work Week:  School is closed

July 4   Fourth of July Holiday:  School is closed

July 5  Summer Programming Begins!  Information will be available next week!


 
 
Venessa’s Primary:
The students are still discussing how wonderful our Continent Day Celebration was.  A P3 student works quietly on the positive snake game and combination of 10.  A P1 student masters color box 1 and said, “I did it, I found all the matches.” Two P2 students work on the red rods while another student builds the word sets for tub and pot with the movable alphabet.  A P1 student works on the screwdriver board while another spoons marbles.  

Lower Elementary:
It’s a jungle in here!  Students are hard at work making props and pieces for our end-of-year performance.  The Amazon Rainforest is coming alive right here in the classroom!  An older student helps a first year friend add some extra lines to their script.  A student works with a group on projecting their voice before they step up on the stage to run their lines and work their entrance.  What a busy classroom!  What a grand production.  

Toddler:

All but one toddler is now using underwear instead of diapers!  A toddler is invited to take her turn using the toilet.  She needs little assistance but a reminder to use soap to wash her hands.  Another toddler has urinated right before he reaches the toilet.  He is encouraged to sit on the toilet for a moment to make certain everything is OK.  He then moves to the red and blue mat and works hard to put one foot in one hole of his clean, dry underwear.  It seems simple but it is a learned skill that requires multiple attempts.  Finally!  The shorts slip on without a struggle.  Shoes are on and the child heads over to stand on the blue line, indicated he is ready to head outside to play!

Infant:

Two young infants crawl aver to witness the fun that is being had at the weaning tables.  Three friends are sitting at the tables.  Their guide has strategically fills three Ziploc bags with red and blue paints and taped one to each table.  The infants excitedly press against the cool bags and watch as the colors change from rand and blue to a swirl of purples.  Sensory experiences abound.  

Amanda’s Primary:

The students are working hard this morning.  A second year student is working on the 100 board for the first time.  Two third year students work on the cube chain of 10.  One first year student is concentrating on tracing the horse puzzle.  At group time students are given a lesson on how carry a table or a chair in the classroom, so they can sit at their desired place in the classroom.

Upper Elementary:
Students gather in a circle to read parts for the end of the year performance.  The calendar Is marked for June 9th.  3 weeks to create props, costumes and a stage.  While tilling the Fiesta Garden, students add mulch to retain moisture and review the layers of soil.  

Middle School:
It’s almost time for our end of the year performance!  A  parent is here helping flesh out ideas for what we’re going to do this year.  We’re seeing shades of our conversation we had about A Young Peoples History of the United Sates.  It’s tough to tell which debate is more spirited.  Which time period our performance should take place in or whether or not the world economy could function without wars.  We really do cover it all here!

Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2016-2017 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

Families may order yearbooks now at www.squareup.com/store/cms-rva

May is Lower and Upper El Conference Month

May 19:  Order your child’s yearbooks!  Perfect gifts for those who love your child as well!

May 19:  THIS IS A CHANGE: Sex and a Pizza-Parent/Child Event 4:00-5:00.  If your child is in 5th grade or older, plan to be here with us for this amazing event.  Enhance your family's communication skills and share your values. RSVP:  Watch for additional information.  V hours for participation.

May 29:  Memorial Day Holiday:  School is closed.

June 2:  Lower El End of the Year Play 6:00.  Students remain at school and have a quick pizza dinner here.  Parents arrive at 6 sharp!  Please let Monique know if your child cannot participate.  Watch for additional information.

June 5:
 Amanda’s Primary Four Minute Play 3:30.  Come and join Amanda’s students for a short (but sweet) classroom performance!  See you then.

June 7:  Venessa’s Primary Four Minute Play 3:30.  Come and join Venessa’s students for a short (but sweet) classroom performance!  See you then!

June 9: RSVP with food order for End of the Year Celebration

June 9:  Upper el. End of the Year Play 6:00 (What for additional information)

June 10:  Outdoor Classroom Event 9:30-12:00

June 15:  Middle School End of the Year Play  7:00

June 16: End of the Year Celebration and Honey Pot Awards 5:00

June 19: Yearbook Signing Day:   Students are given their yearbooks.  They invite their friends and teachers to sign them!  Signing Day is a big event full of happiness and laughter.  Watch for yearbook order forms.

June 26:  Last Day of School before Summer Break

June 27-
July 3: Facility Work Week:  School is closed

July 4:  Fourth of July Holiday:  School is closed

July 5:  
Summer Programming Begins!  
 
 
Infant: Two young infants crawl over to witness the fun that is being had at the weaning tables, occupied by three other friends. Their guide has carefully and strategically filled three clear bags with red and blue paint and taped them each to separate tables. The infants excitedly press against the cool bags and watch as the colors change from red and blue to an entrancing swirl of purple. Sensory experiences abound!

Amanda’s Primary: A first year student  chooses the red knobless cylinders. The thinnest cylinder is so tricky. It falls off the top of the tower several times. The child does not lose hope. On the fifth try, success! A second year student high fives their teacher after reading their first Bob Book! Several kindergarteners practice reciting their facts about Chile in anticipation of Continent day.

Upper Elementary: A student traces each country of South America and cuts it out carefully. The paper is  marbled and when dry, a new South America puzzle map is created. Friends are invited to piece it together.

Daily Soup is received as black beans are spiced with smoked paprika and fresh garlic. Three students also cut potatoes and radishes to fry up and garnish with onion. Ingredients are identified in Spanish.

Venessa’s Primary: Two third year students discuss the rivers of South America one student says, “I thinks the Amazon river is the longest in South America.” A second year student works on the cube chain of four, while another second year student traces sandpaper numerals and writes them on a chalkboard. A third year student makes a pattern out of the green, red, and yellow cylinders. A first year student receives a handwashing lesson for the very first time.

Toddler: Splash! After several days of fun in the sun the rain is back, but that certainly doesn’t dampen our young friends’ spirits! Everybody is busy on the playground today--one friend stands beneath the sunshade, patiently waiting for their small bowl to fill from the stream of water flowing from the fabric. Another friend carefully asks each of her peers to join her on the outdoor rug for an impromptu group session, led by none other than herself!  We clearly have an ambitious young Montessori Guide on our hands.  She specifically invites our newest Toddler friend to sit beside her in order to help him through the songs Central’s Guides have so lovingly taught her. A beautiful cycle to witness...

Lower Elementary: Preparations for continent day have saturated the work cycle. A table of students work on maps of South America’s biomes. One student adds in the major rivers, “Wow there are so many and they all connect!” Another student makes a book of animals while their friend works on a book of musical instruments, “That one looks cool, I think it’s a rattle made of goat hooves.” Many students help make a large mixed media flag of Brazil. Viva!

Middle School: Everyone works diligently on preparation for Continent Day. Some students research traditional Colombian designs, while others work on maps of the country and its continent. The Middle School students have made many maps over the years, and some of them are doing something different. One student makes a pixelated rendition of South America. Another student scours through old National Geographic magazines to find materials for a collage map. The student traces and cuts out each country. A teacher from a different room is passing by and becomes inspired. Collage maps begin appearing in the Upper El and Lower El rooms. Look for them on Continent Day!

Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2016-2017 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

May is Lower and Upper El Conference Month

May 10-14:   PAC fundraiser and really good food.  Nota Bene was voted Richmond’s best restaurant and it is GOOD.  15% of sales is returned to our parent association.  Pizza.  Pasta. That’s-A-Montessori! Watch for information in your child’s bag or contact the front office for “postcards” that are to be shown before your purchase.

May 12:  Continent Day!  5:00-6:00.  Families bring and home prepared potluck foods representing countries from South America.  Presentations and activities.  Watch for more info.  V hours for setup and cleanup.

May 19:  THIS IS A CHANGE: Sex and a Pizza-Parent/Child Event 4:00-5:00.  If your child is in 5th grade or older, plan to be here with us for this amazing event.  Enhance your family's communication skills and share your values. RSVP:  Watch for additional information.  V hours for participation.

May 29:  Memorial Day Holiday:  School is closed.


June 2:  Lower El End of the Year Play 6:00.  Students remain at school and have a quick pizza dinner here.  Parents arrive at 6 sharp!  Please let Monique know if your child cannot participate.  Watch for additional information.


June 5:  Amanda’s Primary Four Minute Play 3:30.  Come and join Amanda’s students for a short (but sweet) classroom performance!  See you then.


June 7:  Venessa’s Primary Four Minute Play 3:30.  Come and join Venessa’s students for a short (but sweet) classroom performance!  See you then!


 
 
Upper Elementary: Children are creating plurals. “They wish that they can always have egg sandwiches. Their parents have to pay taxes.” Other students pick their favorite poems and begin to memorize them in preparation for classroom recitations. Music from Gustavo Dudamel is playing in the background.  “This is the music we will play for our Venezuelan performance!” Several children are looking over their planting calendar and determine that if they planted seed on April 5th, they may be able harvest on June 19th!

Infant: Six infants transition from their classroom to their playground.  This is not a rapid process. Guides hold the two doors open wide as two little ones simply toddle outside.  Two by two,  four infants crawl across their soft classroom carpet.  They cross their classroom threshold, cross the polished hallway tiles and move through the exterior door.  They then crawl over the highly-textured entry mat and onto the smoothly sanded and finished wooden deck.  They have now felt multiple surfaces and textures with tiny hands, knees and toes.  Because no one carried them, they had an opportunity to feel all of these amazing textures.

Amanda’s Primary: Each child carefully inserts a pumpkin seed into the newly turned earth.  Watering cans are filled and brought over to the garden.  The big orange pumpkins should be ready to harvest around Chili-Cook Off time!  That seems a long way away…Two students have moved into the classroom and are busy creating a story with the moveable alphabet. The story goes like this.  The bunnies went to the forest to get food and then they came back.  (It’s a short story…).  A student happily shares his longer story and illustrations about a farm house and how the tracker needed to go and get some gas while the wind was blowing all around…words are everywhere right now!

Toddler:   A toddler has settled contently into a “Billy bowl”.  She is startled and begins to cry after one and then another soft pastel colored ball drops directly onto her head! She lets out a loud cry of surprise and alarm and seems completely baffled as to what just happened.  A guide points to the two balls and tells her that she has selected to sit directly beneath the pathway of the balls as they roll off the yard sails and fall to the ground.  The toddler sits for a moment and then gets up and moves her seating to another area of the playground.  From this vantage point, she watches with amazement as a  friend throws a ball high into the air.  The ball is caught by the sail and rolls across the sail and then falls quietly to the ground.

Venessa’s Primary:  A PII student collects the watering can so they can go out and water the “prism” garden. Two students discuss what flowers were planted in the tiny classroom garden.  “Pansies.” says one of the students. A PIII student masters working on the trinomial cube. Another student writes the word, “cate” on the chalkboard for the first time and the children cheer! A first-year student is receiving a lesson on the correct way to clean their nose. Fold the tissue in half.  One half goes on one nostril, the other half goes on the other nostril.  Now, blow and then pinch and pull the tissue down. Two students work on counting the square chain of 10 on our patio.

Lower Elementary: “I see one…Look!” The first sprouts are emerging from the soil. Two friends are watering the dry soil and notice we need a lot of water for this garden. Inside friends are preparing for the first part of the Amazon forest. One friend needs some research information about an electric eel. “It can be as long as 6-8 feet! That means it is even taller than my grandfather who is 6 foot 3” or 6 foot 2!”

Middle School: Students are writing about their favorite poems in their journals. There is a lively discussion during Book Club as students consider and analysis their favorite poems. A poetry matrix with six iconic images of water, yellow, comedy/tragedy masks, heart and black palm print are tucked into the front of each student’s poetry journal.  Where  might they find inspiration for their own poems during spring break?  The icons might help!  Student elections are taking place and people are lining up at booths so they can get their selections in.  Lamar and Asani each win their party’s primaries!  Congratulations!

Calendar Updates: (Please check Central’s website for a downloadable 2015-2016 calendar) http://centralmontessori.com/calendar/

April is Primary Conference Month

April 14-21 Spring Break:  School is Closed.  

April 24 Middle School Shalom Farm 8:30-12:30 Yes! Dress for a mess and every type of weather.  Parent volunteers are welcome to join us!

April 25 Barefoot Puppets Workshops begin.  Upper el/middle school students participate in Puppetry 101 session in the morning.  Middle school students will participate in a puppet-making workshop in the p.m.

April 27 Barefoot Puppets Workshops continue -Middle school students continue puppet making sessions in the a.m. and p.m.

April 28 Primary Meet & Greet:  6:30 Refreshments/time with staff/parents.

April 28 PIN:  7-8 Discuss topics concerning this age child.  Perfect for toddler parents with a transitioning toddler.  

May is Lower and Upper El Conference Month

May 2 Teacher Appreciation Day-Watch for additional information.

May 6 Outdoor Classroom Event 9:30-12:30!

May 8 Parent Association of Central (PAC) Meeting 7-8

May 12 Continent Day Celebration 5:00!  

 
    PictureCamp In, Fire pit, We take turns seating around the fire.




    PictureWinter comes to the school