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!  

 
 
Now that We Think About It…
Once there was a child who wanted to create a magical garden space.  This child had a family who helped select and purchase beautiful boards in many shapes and sizes.  Once there was a teacher who listen carefully to all the grand plans and knew that the plans might be too grand for such a small child and such a small space.  The teacher counseled both parents and child.  “Everyone has a right to try and succeed.  Everyone has a right to try and fail.”  The child talked to friends and in short order, a teacher joined their efforts. Measurements were taken.  Boards were cut and screwed into place.  A mountain of soil was moved into the garden box.  By the end of the day, tiny seeds and big dreams were stuffed/hidden within this magical garden space. There is quiet pride and amazement.  There is happiness because of this tiny space on our campus. 

Upper Elementary: Students work together to ground posts for the Fiesta Garden.  A trip to Sneed’s Nursery completes the task of the garden’s design and content.  Walking past the water fountain, a student notices a small black tail.  The gardener at Sneed’s points out the small ecosystem within the pond. “If you look close enough, you will see newts and tadpoles.”  A group discussion is held to confirm and agree on the performance for Continent Day. How “clever”.

Infant: A new form of communication breaks out in the classroom. An infant happily clicks their tongue and looks at a friend, the friend in kind, responds with a friendly counter click. Soon all the little ones are happily conversing with clicks, smiles and waves. Later a little hits a major milestone!  He is crawling!  Based on his expression…it seems he may be pleasantly surprised by this new development.  Life. 

Amanda’s Primary: Two third-year students work together with the moveable alphabet and the phonetics object box.  Four second-year students receive a lesson on the binomial cube.  A third-year student gives a second-year student a lesson on the bow tying frame.  Following the lesson, the student ties bows for the first time!  A first-year student practices the button frame.  After unbuttoning the whole frame a friend walks by saying, “You did it!”

Toddler:  There are three little outdoor tables and four tiny blue chairs.  Lunchboxes are perched upon these new table spaces and tiny food containers are strewn upon colorful “tablecloths” (napkins).  It is lovely at this piazza.  It seems the dinners are somehow silent, simply happy to be so comfortable and able to watch the gleeful activities of friends close by.  

Venessa’s Primary:  The students are hard at work this afternoon.  A PIII student is reading a book on rocks and minerals, then writes the rocks he identifies in a journal.  A PII student makes a book on butterflies and identifies them by name.  Two PI students work on building the tower of cubes. “Close your eyes” and “Surprise”—there’s the tower!  A PII student and a third-year student work on sewing buttons on a pillow they are working on together.

Lower Elementary:
As the morning work cycle begins a few students recall a lesson on square numbers and cubed numbers.  The recreate this mathematical concept by folding and constructing a gradient of cubes out of grid paper.  A student starts a study of the United States by placing the parts of the puzzle map onto the control map.  A first-year student reads a booklet of sight words (that they made) to a friend.  They laugh at the silly sentence they made up for one of the words, a sweet quiet sound for the spring morning. 

Middle School: It’s National Poetry Month!  Students assemble for a workshop on poetic devices.  One student rhythmically chants a line of poetry that has assonance in it.  The other students jump in to add their voices to the repeating vowel sounds.  “The snow in the rose garden groaned”.  As they say it again and again they all get big smiles on their faces, and the rhythm of the “O” sound fills the room.  Another teacher walks through the room, and a smile fills their face as well.

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

 April is Primary Conference Month

April 10 Lower el and upper el. parents sign-up for May conferences.  

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.  

April 25 Barefoot Puppets Work Shops begin-Middle School start.  Watch for additional information.

April 27 Barefoot Puppets Work Shops continue -Middle School start.  Watch for additional information.

April 28 Primary Meet & Greet:  6:30 Refreshments/time with staff/parents.
PIN: 7-8PM  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! 

 
 
Happening Soon: Our Educational Gardens event will be this Sunday from 1-3 pm. It has been many years since the students and parents have shown such a strong interest in our school gardens.  Special thanks to our Outdoor Classroom Committee for helping to build interest and keeping the "what's possible" dialogue open.  

This weekend, families will come together to help prepare the beds so that our children can plan, plant, care for and harvest plants.  We would love to see you join us.  Bring your children and help create the educational gardens that provide so much information and happiness to our children.

The middle school students have claimed mini-gardens around the campus.  We ask that the students and their families participate in this event.  V hours are awarded to middle school students.

Fiesta Garden
Community Herb Garden
Tiny flower Garden
Circle Garden
Pumpkin Garden
Middle School Mini-Gardens
Pollinator Gardens


If you come, feel free to park at the Infant and Toddler building if needed.  

Upper Elementary: 3 students use nonverbal communication while taking turns constructing volume cubes.  Cubes of 1-6 are created, with book labels of each cube.  A student folds a paper 3 times, the first page reveling the exponent, the second as a multiplication phrase and the third page revealing the value of the cube.  In preparation for their Fiesta Garden a student designs a layout using graph paper and their experience with areas and perimeters.

Infant: The fact that six, yes count them, six, infants are all sound asleep at the same time is evidence of the wet, cool, cloudy day.  Perfect weather for a nap.  Two infant guides are sitting close together surrounded by the little ones.  They are talking quietly about the day's activities and what might be happening with each child.  Observations are shared and notes are taken.  Now, one toddler is awake!  He spies his guide close at his side.  He seems to wait, make eye contact with her and then...he waves!  A tiny little wave accompanied by a tiny little I-just-woke-up smile.

Amanda’s Primary: Three third year students work together with the knobless cylinders.  Towers are carefully built with repeating patterns.  The three friends take turns creating original constructions for their friends to recreate.  This is a moment of cooperation at its best.  A lesson on the three-part cards of South American animals is given to a group of first, second and third year students.  A first-year student sees a pencil on the floor.  Without hesitation, the student picks up the pencil and confidently restores it. 

Toddler: There are four toddlers in various stages of dress and undress and toileting.  Two toddlers are sitting on floor mats and working hard to put their own underwear on.  One of these two friends is very distracted by the car design on his underwear and finds it hard to concentrate on the task at hand.  A guide suggests that he save the special underwear for later and put on the "plain" underwear.  This seems to be a great idea.  The special underwear is put away and as quick as can be, the plain underwear is on!  The little one restores his mat and is soon standing at a table with crayons in hand.  

Venessa’s Primary: A small group of students is receiving a lesson on cloth scrubbing with a washboard.  A third-year student works on “CH” sound using Spanish words like chicle” It’s chewing gum.”  Another student counts the cube chain of six and organizes the counters.  A visiting toddler is watching an older friend work with the tower of cubes.  Two students discuss the bulbs they just planted in the classroom garden. 

Lower Elementary: Don’t be square!  Learning to square numbers is such fun.  One friend knows all the squares of numbers and explains to a younger friend, “You just take the bead bar of six and put it out six times and then add them up or you can multiply them.  I’ll show you, 6, 12, 18, 24, 30, 36! See? You can even make the beads into a square. A real square of six.  So, you want to try it with the seven bars?”  

Middle School: Students are rushing out into the school’s garden spaces.  They quickly determine who will share which space.  Individual mini-gardens are designed.  Several students are researching the cost of seeds and plants.  Other students are sketching the plots and one child is design the mast plan to be presented to the Outdoor Classroom Society this Sunday.

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

April is Primary Conference Month
April 2 Outdoor Classroom Society 1-3:  Help us prepare the classroom educational gardens!  Bring donations of herbs for our Community Herb Garden at the Infant and Toddler Building!  Middle School Mini-Gardens are a focus.  Middle School families are encouraged to come and help their child establish their own gardens! 

April 3 Middle School Shalom Farm 8:30-12:30 Yes! Dress for a mess and every type of weather.  

April 6 School Portrait Make-Up Date:  9:00 a.m. If you would like, for any reason, to have your child's portrait made, just let us know!  All students must arrive by 9:00.  More info to follow.

April 6 Outdoor Classroom Garden Event: 1-3 Children are taking over the gardens! Wow!  We are asking room parents to help with this amazing educational opportunity.  Let us know if you can help a bit-weekend help is great.  

April 7 Spring Market Day:  Kindergarten and Lower El may purchase. Upper El and Middle School may sale.  Market runs from 2:00-3:30. No Jefferson Park Day today.  

April 8 Variety and Talent Show:  4-5:30 All families with children old enough to sit through a performance should come to this event.  Popcorn and lemonade.  Perfect.  

April 10 Lower el and upper el. parents sign-up for May conferences.  

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.  

April 25 Barefoot Puppets Work Shops begin-Middle School start.  Watch for additional information.

April 27 Barefoot Puppets Work Shops continue -Middle School start.  Watch for additional information.

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.

 
 
Upper Elementary: Students initiate a skit on a lesson for apostrophes and commas.  Parts are needed for independent and dependent clauses.  Daily Soup is enjoyed by Upper El and Middle School students; two children serve beans and potato tacos with a purple cabbage and mango slaw, so colorful!  Fresh cucumber water is served afterwards.  On a Go-Trip, paper products are donated to Diversity.  The group navigates a route without going on the highway: “We are travelling to the Northside of town.”  Observations are made at the Children’s Hospital currently under construction: “Maybe we can donate there when it’s finished!”

Infant: A little one has her shoe off and is trying in on her friend's foot as other infants gather around their guide to hear a tiny book read to them.  Toys are strewn around the room and peace prevails until a friend must leave to group to have a diaper changed.  Now there are big tears and protests!  A little one has put two toys in her mouth...maybe to relieve the discomfort of teething...Her guide waits watchfully until she has taken the toys out of her mouth and set them down.  The guide quickly collects the toys to be sterilized. Once dried, they are quickly returned to the shelf for others to use for enjoyment or comfort.    

Amanda’s Primary: A third-year student chooses the square chains.  A beautiful triangle of colored beads and labels is created.  A second-year student places each work form a shelf carefully on a mat in the correct sequence.  One child dusts and applies wood oil to the shelf and restores each work to its proper place.  A first-year student draws a curved figure, with deep concentration and impressive precision the child cuts exactly on the line they drew.

Toddler: The toddlers, one after another, restore their work and go to their hooks.  A guide points out that it is warmer now and they do not need their jackets.  Two friends determine that jackets are needed anyway and put their jackets on the floor.  Their tiny hands, and then arms, go into the sleeves of their jackets.  And...flip!  Their coats are on correctly!  They shuffle around and find their spots on the thin blue line and wait.  Their guide sees that they are ready to go outside.  She opens the door and out they go to find fat, glistening bubbles gliding upon the gentle breeze.    

Venessa’s Primary: The aroma of pancakes fills the room while a first-year student mixes pancake batter and places the batter on a skillet.  A third-year student is reading Spanish flashcards and making a Spanish Journal, “perro means dog!”  A first-year student was so happy that she completed the parts of a turtle, “I finished the turtle!”  A second-year student is painting their North America map, while another second-year student works on simple addition with the bead stair.

Lower Elementary: All the senses are at work in the Lower El classroom this morning.  “Look at how green the squash gets when they cook!”, comments a student who is working on preparing vegetable lettuce wraps for Daily Soup.  Two students sit together to listen to a march by Johann Strauss (the elder), “This one sounds more happy than the other piece. We listened to his son’s music yesterday”, recalls one of the students.  During music class the group whispers “T-A-N-G-O” as they practice the dance steps to music by Astor Piazolla, from Argentina.

Middle School:  Students are gathered to present their first person narrative writings based on their Young People's History of America readings. They are discussing the American Civil Rights Movement and cultural memory.  The students contemplate why the FBI had tapped Dr. King's phone.  "Why would the government pass the Civil Rights Act and then turn around a tap a civil rights leader's phone?" This is a discussion that will continue for some time... 

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

March is Infant/Toddler and Middle School Conference Month

March 27 Washington DC trip (middle school and upper el students) (watch for details)

March 30 Variety Show Auditions 3-4 pm Perfect for everyone!  Parents can join their child on stage.  There is only love and acceptance here!  Children (and parents) can "audition" for the performances.  Performances should be under 3 minutes. Poems, instrumentals, song, pet tricks, magic tricks...dramatization, comedy, instructions on how to paint a picture...all of it is good.  Watch for details.

March 31 Primary Science Fair 5:00 (details have gone out)

April 2 Outdoor Classroom Society 1-3:  Help us prepare the classroom educational gardens!  Bring donations of herbs for our Community Herb Garden at the Infant and Toddler Building!  Yes. 

April 3 Middle School Shalom Farm 8:30-12:30 Yes! Dress for a mess and every type of weather.  

April 6 School Portrait Make-Up Date:  9:00 a.m. If you would like, for any reason, to have your child's portrait made, just let us know!  All students must arrive by 9:00.  More info to follow.

April 6 Outdoor Classroom Event: 1-3 Children are taking over the gardens! Wow!  We are asking room parents to help with this amazing educational opportunity.  Let us know if you can help a bit-weekend help is great.  

April 7 Spring Market Day:  Kindergarten and Lower El may purchase. Upper El and Middle School may sale.  Market runs from 2:00-3:30.  No Jefferson Park Day today.  

 April 10 Lower el and upper el. parents sign-up for May conferences.  

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.  

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

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


 
 
Upper Elementary: In celebration of Pi, students create diagrams studying the parts of a circle. Upon receiving a pie from Proper Pie students measure the diameter to discover the circumference.  Upon finding the circumference, the children line up for a slice of pie.  A friend reveals that this is her first taste of pie.  Students join in for a group of dividing fractions by more fractions. Everyone is excited about the D.C. trip March 27TH.

Infant: There is a "wall" of infants standing silently along the edges of the weaning tables in the center of the room.  Four infants are standing, silently, facing the same direction, with their backs toward the door. (Two infants learned how to pull themselves up this very week.  Their hard work has been rewarded today as they find they are able to stand shoulder to shoulder with their friends and watch something quite amazing.) They are watching an "older" friend and her guide sitting close together. They are watching the guide pour a tiny bit of milk for a thermos into a little glass (shot glass) for the infant. The infant carefully and slowly manages to bring the glass to her lips and drink!  There is a repeating pattern.  Drink, wait, drink, wait.  Not a drop has been split.  Quite an accomplishment. The reverent-like silence of the observing infants seems appropriate for this remarkable moment. One day, they too, will participate in a similar moment of glory. 

Amanda’s Primary: A third year student helps a younger student make a South American sloth. A second-year student traces the control for the parts of an anteater and copies the labels including the two-foot-long tongue! A first-year student chooses bead stringing and shows the teacher their repeating pattern of purple, pink, purple, pink!  Students take turns choosing food colors to add to the white carnation’s vases to see what happens. Later in the day, some flowers begin to change colors. “Why is that happening?”

Toddler: The day is brilliantly clear and the toddlers in their multi-colored coats, hats and scarves, holding beautiful classroom tone bells, fill the air with a sound that suggests the very essence of spring. All twelve toddlers are in motion, ringing their bells. The brightly colored bells are shared or exchanged.  Sometimes there is frustration and a tear or two because the wait seems so very long for a turn.  But no sadness can exist for very long in the mist of this beautiful toddler made music. 

Venessa’s Primary: The students are hard at work this morning. A group of young students receive a lesson on matching different fabrics visually and by texture. Another student explores drawing to Vivaldi’s four seasons and said, “I’m drawing a big circle for the wind!” A PIII student reads, “Dot and Mit” to a younger friend. A first-year student walks carefully with a tray of wooden eggs and sets them gently on a table.  She transfers them to a bowl.

Lower Elementary:  Seed bombs! Part clay, part soil and part wild flower seeds mixed together make a seed bomb. Friends, together with our parent volunteer, are making these lovely bombs for James River Park. A few students organize and form an impromptu band of a drum and ukulele to set a soundtrack for the afternoon activities.

Middle School: The students are relaxed. It is Friday and they have completed their week of standardized testing. The room is filled with various strains of music...much of it being composed electronically right now. A ukulele duo is performing in a corner of the room to the delight of a few friends who sit close by drawing in their journals.  A student exclaims that his original composition sounds like a sound-track for the book they are currently reading for book club. There is a sculpture project in the works on one of the desks.  A chess board is in full use and students are talking about their garden designs.  A decision is made to put off the classrooms electoral primaries (for elementary and older) until the candidate, who had to leave because of illness, can return to join the debates.  

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

March is Infant/Toddler and Middle School Conference Month

March 17 Infant & Toddler Parent Meet/Greet 6:30 and PIN 7:00 (call Central for childcare-$10 per hr.)

March 20 Primary parents sign up for Conferences

March 20 Daily Soup funds drive starts. The giant carrot will be out!

March 27 Washington DC trip for middle school and upper el students (details have gone out.)

March 31 Primary Science Fair 5:00 (details have gone out)

April is Primary Conference Month

April 2 Outdoor Classroom Event 1-3 Classroom Garden beds will be prepared for the children!

April 3 Middle School Shalom Farm 8:30-12:30 Yes! Dress for a mess and every type of weather. 

April 3- Tennis with Victor Rizzi starts for Upper El and Middle School students. Students must be here by 9 am to participate.

April 7      Spring Market Day (Upper El and Middle School sell and buy and PIII may buy) 2:00-3:00

April 8    Family Variety Show 4:00 (Great for those old enough to attend an hr. long performance) Sign-ups will be posted in office.

April 10   Lower and Upper Elementary Parents Sign Up for Conferences

April 14-21 Spring Break: School is closed

April 28 Primary Meet/Greet 6:30 & PIN 7:00-8:00 (call Central for childcare-$10 per hr.)

 
 
Wow.  The whole school is abuzz!  A student creates a cube to represent the trinomial cube.  This classic Montessori material was the inspiration for our school logo.  There are “bees” upstairs and a school song being sung for the first time ever.  We have a school song!  Thanks, Vanessa.  A teacher creates gifts of tiny pipe cleaner bees for her parents and staff prepare to wear the school swag designed by our students for chili cook off earlier this year.  A parent shares her plan to posts her child’s school spirit poster and poem on our parent Facebook.  Lovely.  Tomorrow is our first ever Buzz Bee Friday.  Students are invited to wear all things Central.  Let us know if you would like to purchase an item.  Just contact the front office. 

Upper Elementary: Five students pack up the wonderful books our families donated during Friendship Week.  They explore the community they travel through on their way to Richmond Community Hospital. They leave the books with the front desk with assurances that the books will be placed in the Little Free Library there.  Inspired by all the books they have transported, they make a detour to the infant and toddler building to read to their young friends.

Infant: The teachers are singing together in the infant room.  Some old blues number.  The beauty of it, along with the sight of happy, content infants, is a wonderful thing to see.  Two friends, play peek a boo with the paisley printed fabric circle.  The friend, in control of the fabric, pulls a bit too hard.  No worries.  There is a soft carpet to fall over on.  Sure enough, the child falls over.  This sudden development does not stop the belly laughs and the game begins again.  

Amanda’s Primary: The students learn about Central’s mascot, the Bee! The students eagerly study the parts of a bee, they use ellipse and quatrefoil to make colorful bees. The room is soon “buzzing” with bees and busy students. After a lesson, a new student unpacks and repacks a suitcase. A PII student receives a lesson on the geometric solids and a PIII student is working hard on a map of Africa.

Toddler: There are a zillion(!) sparkly, pastel balls on the playground!  Just the right size.  A toddler is...toddling...around with three in her arms.  One child seems to accidentally kick a blue sparkly ball and it rolls across the ground.  Off the child goes, in hot pursuit.  He kicks again, misses and kicks again.  The ball rolls forward but is no longer chased by the child who is now busy helping a friend put her shoe on. He adds a bit of mulch to the top of the shoe.  Both children giggle and then move apart. 

Venessa’s Primary:  A beautiful moment unfolds with a visiting toddler. She asks an older friend to give her a lesson on flower arranging. A small group of PII and PIII students make a chant for Spirit Week “CMS is the BEST!”. Another lesson is given to a group of students about the timeline of Maria Montessori’s life. A student comments, “That’s like our school name Central Montessori!” A PII student works on the sound cylinders while another finishes the 50 board. Happy Spirit Week!

Lower Elementary:  A second year student shows a first-year student how to embellish their map of Australia with jewels that represent the capitals within the territories, the first-year student is excited to be introduced to this extension. Continuing the class discussion of fictional and real life heroes, third year students begin collages inspired by the artwork in the book, “Malala Yousafzai: The Warrior with Words”. Another group of students sit around a mat with square beads and cube beads. They are reviewing the functions of exponents. “What if it was 5 with 13 as the exponent? It would be huge!”

Middle School: The group discusses options and make plans for Spirit Week. A student moves throughout the room taking a poll of everyone’s ideas. One student suggests that everyone should wear school colors. The students come to a consensus that wearing school colors is a great idea. Another group of students collects the food donations in the front office and takes it to FeedMore. The donations are weighed at FeedMore. The school collected 98 pounds of food! Go Central!

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

March is Infant/Toddler and Middle School Conference Month


March 1- 3 Central Spirit Week continues

March 4th- Pancake Heaven:  Big Fundraiser for the Neighborhood Resource Center!  Lots of opportunities to participate and of course, parent prepared pancakes!  Yum.

March 9-13-Standardized Testing for 3rd year lower el (third grade) and older. 

Note:  This is a change of dates.  

March 13 Seed Bombs at Central!  Hands on Great Richmond's Vanessa Diamond helps with this project for Lower El students 3:30-5:00 V. Hours for parent help.

March 13
Parent Association of Central (PAC) Meeting 7-8

March 17 Infant & Toddler Parent Meet/Greet 6:30 and PIN 7:00 (call Central for childcare-$10 per hr.)

March 24 Washington DC trip (middle school and upper el students) (watch for details)

March 31 Primary Science Fair 5:00 (details have gone out)

April 3 Middle School Shalom Farm 8:30-12:30 Yes! Dress for a mess and every type of weather. 

 
 
What’s Happening Right Now… 2/24/17

Wow.  Our very first School Spirit Week starts Monday.  Posters are going up and everyone is a “buzz” with ideas of what we can do to honor our little school.  Teachers are creating study units:  What are the parts of a bee?  Let’s make a timeline of Dr. Montessori.  What does our logo represent?  What is our school proud of?  What can people do with honey?  Why is the bee our mascot?  Do we need a school song?  When can we wear of Swag?  (We have the Swag….). 

This is what we can we came up so far.  Students and staff can wear blue and orange or any of our beautiful school spirit shirts on sell at the office. 

Toddler: A toddler friend reenters the room after visiting the “big” school.  She has worked hard to grow strong and learn the important lessons of self-care and kindness for others in this room.  But, she is ready!  After her big adventure this morning, she seems glad to be reunited with her friends at the “little” school.  She will have two more visits and then she will leave this place of tininess, better known as the, “Land of Laps”, forever.  Her first teachers will miss her but her each of her toddler friends will look forward to seeing her again when they are old enough to join her in the primary program. 

Upper Elementary: Students are intent upon a National Geographic report on the various zones of a marine pier.  They bring in 4 logs, each one foot long, from the playground and are creating the aquatic creatures for each zone.  Beautiful shells, collected and shared with the students now house amazing, detailed mollusks of various sizes and shapes.  Vocabulary words are researched and a painted diorama is added as a background.  “Maybe one day we can go and see this at Virginia Beach!”

Infant: A parent comments that his little one seems happier these days.  It seems to be true…she is sitting now-unaided!  Her hands and eyes can coordinate.  Her body supports her weight as she leans forward to pick up a shiny pair of silver rings.  She is completely involved in this effort and seems to not be aware of all the movement and activities flowing around her. 

Amanda’s Primary: A first year student concentrates on bead stringing. Nearby another first-year student is pin punching South America.  Two second year students take turns fetching specified quantities of units, tens, hundreds and thousands from the bank for the first time.  A third-year student works carefully to create a model of a human skeleton using old pasta and glue on construction paper.

Venessa’s Primary:  A small group lesson is being given on the 3 parts cards of a Sloth.  A third-year student is tracing and labeling the pars of the Brazilian tapir.  Two students are working on extensions using the red rods, knobbed and knobless cylinders.  A first-year student is spooning into 3 different containers by color, Pink, blue and purple.  A second-year student is working on a metal inset block and practicing on “up touch, down touch”. Two first year students are cleaning the glass windows of the classroom!

Lower Elementary:  The students glide into the morning work cycle as they arrive.  Second and third year students maneuver through complex math equations using the order of operation.  Page of pencil become lively and colorful as grammar symbols are added, “Happy is an adjective!” First year students continue work on division and many have received lessons on the rocks and tubes!  As a whole class, each student has begun work on the timeline of life.

Middle School: Students eagerly discuss, in two groups the laws they would create in a world run by kids.  A walk outside to pick up trash in the neighborhood was rewarded by passers-by giving their thank you for the hard work we are doing.  Students are introduced to writing research papers and developing a thesis statement.  One student concludes that pennies are worthless, while another concludes that the 1900s are the best fashion period.

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

March is Middle School and Infant and Toddler Conference Month


March 4th- Pancake Heaven:  Big Fundraiser for the Neighborhood Resource Center!  Lots of opportunities to participate and of course, parent prepared pancakes!  Yum.

March 9-13-Standardized Testing for 3rd year lower el (third grade) and older. 

Note:  This is a change of dates.  

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




    PictureEveryone gets a tent.

    PictureWinter comes to the school