March 2016 Newsletter

MARCH 2016                                                                                           NEWSLETTER

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A BIG CHANGE HAS OCCURRED:  Isis has had to resign her teaching position with us.  Her husband has been offered a job which he cannot refuse and which necessitates Isis staying home with their children. We are deeply saddened not to have Isis in the classroom with her kindness, patience, genuine fondness for the children, unique spatial intelligence, as well as the ability to help with the infrastructure of the classroom ( just to mention a few of her gifts).  We are, nonetheless, happy for her husband to have this opportunity to work in his chosen field.

 

AN ALUMNI PARENT HAS AGREED to work with us for the remainder of the school year. I asked her to write a bit about herself and what she would like to do at Rainbow Montessori:

“Greetings!  My name is Lori Crum and I am always thrilled to say that I am a Rainbow Mom! My grown children both attended Rainbow for a full four years (including their kindergarten year).  They are glorious human beings who attribute their years at Rainbow to giving them the right start as global citizens.  Our family has remained connected with Kit and the school.

 

“I have worked as a public school special educator (learning disabilities to academic giftedness) for many years and I was excited when Kit asked me to fill an unexpected staff opening. I am delighted for this opportunity to guide your precious children in a classroom that I have loved and believed in for 23 years. Kit’s process of creating an environment conducive to self-discovery and growth in every child is unparalleled.  It is a privilege for me to be a part of it and I look forward to meeting all of you and your children!”

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SPRING BREAK:  School will be closed the week of March 28th – April 1st.

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VERTEBRATES have been our most recent big study.  We are illustrating, reading about, classifying, and discussing the progression and differences of vertebrate development from fish to amphibians to reptiles to birds to mammals. There is a small replica of the human skeleton in the classroom which is a wonderful “real life” example of the skeletal structure, along with the back bone and vertebrae. Bonnie Muck will be coming in for a presentation on human bones.

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GRAVITY was recently brought to life by Bonnie.  She talked about the invisible forces of wind and magnetism which are nonetheless present and felt and then demonstrated the invisible force called gravity that causes objects to attract each other and makes objects fall to earth.  The children stood on our stool and dropped various objects – two at a time – to illustrate the force of gravity and that heavy and light things drop at the same rate.  Gravity Centers were set up in the gym whereby the children slid down the slide, jumped up and down, poured water, threw bean bags up into the air.  Finally, the children engaged in a great art project, Gravity Drip Painting, wherein they spooned different colored paint from the top of a cardboard frame.  Beautiful!

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OUR FUND RAISER MEETING was enthusiastic and inspiring.  Fliers have been handed out to all the parents and we hope you have each taken the time to read it and are making plans to help with your time and donations. Donations for the yard sale may be brought in next week into the gym. Donations for the silent auction can take the form of items/gift certificates from businesses or items of value that you may have, make, or obtain. A spread sheet of businesses that have donated in the past will be on the table across from the classroom.  You can sign up for any of these businesses. PLEASE GET ON BOARD AND HELP US WITH THIS DRIVE!

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“BUG EMAILS” were recently sent out to all our parents with regard to the stomach bug that has plagued our school for almost three weeks.  Apparently this particular bug has been a problem throughout the region and the state, along with the influenza virus which, thankfully, we have not had.  We are hopeful that our up-coming spring break will give everyone a chance to get healthy. Liz Burns shared a relevant diet that is appropriate for intestinal problems which has the acronym of BRAT:  bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast. Very good advice!

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SAINT PATRICK’S DAY was a celebratory time in the classroom.  We talked about Ireland and St. Patrick, cut out or colored shamrocks, and read books about leprechauns.  The highlight of the celebration was a guest visit of Hazel’s dad, John Mark Power.  He played and sang Irish music on the guitar, the laud, the whistle, and the flute and demonstrated the differences between these musical instruments.  We also got a bit of Irish/English history specific to the development of Irish dancing which Julianne Kahler demonstrated for us. Irish soda bread was a real treat too.

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EASTER will be celebrated next week with art projects, books, and an Easter basket hunt on Thursday.  We will discuss the beginning of our new season of spring and introduce the art of Georgia O’Keefe and her flowers.

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THE THREE TO SIX-YEAR OLD is in a period of unconscious learning, absorbing information about his or her time and place from every aspect of the immediate environment.  The child is unaware of learning and chooses to place his or her attention on activities that are repeated frequently. The child watches, listens, copies others and learns.  This style of learning creates the following distinct needs for the young child:

  • A need for an environment rich in language and experiences as vocabulary and story-telling capabilities are developed.
  • A need to use his or her hands to connect the body and the brain to the realities of life.
  • A need to create an emotional foundation built on the love, trust and respect of surrounding adults.
  • A need to repeat activities in order to develop self-mastery and independence.
  • A need for direct guidance on how to interact with people.
  • A need for opportunities to refine the five senses of hearing, seeing, tasting, smelling and touching and to connect precise language to those experiences.
  • A need for truthful and accurate information as the young child doesn’t have a wealth of experiences to discern between fact and fiction, fantasy and reality.
  • A need for movement as the brain requires the body’s motions for optimum neural development.
  • A need for opportunities to exercise his or her will by having freedom within limits that enlarge as skills grow.

During this period of building foundational skills, the child is laying the groundwork for the adult he or she will become. –  Kid’s Talk, The Metamorphosis of the Child, by Maren Schmidt.

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BRAIN STUDIES today show that working together actually causes the brains of individuals to fire together, as if there is one brain among them.  The brain is an open system that functions in communication with the environment.  It both is affected by the environment and affects the environment.  A shared environment can give rise to a shared brain, so that becoming “one in heart and mind” is a reality.  – From Making All Things New by Ilia Delio.

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