February-March 2017 Newsletter

FEBRUARY – MARCH 2017  NEWSLETTER

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FUND RAISER:  We recently had a productive and inspiring meeting regarding our silent auction.  We are still working on the when and where aspect of the fund raiser and will have a more comprehensive memo for all the parents soon. It will be held in May and there are two venue possibilities.  For now, please review these “power points”:

  • STRIVE FOR FIVE.  We would love for each parent to procure or donate five items to the silent auction.  These items need to be a bit more valuable, either from your home, from a business, or a creative idea, i.e., tea party for four.  A business request letter will be available as will “talking points” should you need assistance in requesting donations.
  • BUY AND SELL TICKETS.  The tickets will be $25 each part of which will cover appetizers.
  • PARTICIPATION IS KEY.  We need you to donate for and attend the actual function.
  • YARD SALE ITEMS may still be donated and given to Zion for their Farmers’ Market.

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OUR ASIAN STUDY went out with lots of beauty.  We displayed prints of Japanese screen paintings on our bulletin board, learned about the Japanese poems called haiku, and created “floating ink” art called Suminagashi.  The art process, which is over 2,000 years old from China, involved special ink dropped onto still water which was delicately swirled and which created marbled patterns. This ink design was picked up by laying paper atop the water.

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EUROPE is our current special study topic. We have photographs from the continent of Europe displayed on a bulletin board, a landscape poster by Cezanne on another board, a large jigsaw puzzle of the European countries, as well as flags for the Western European countries.

A collection of international dolls has been enjoyed, we are listening to specific classical music by Bach, Beethoven, Chopin, Strauss, Mozart, and have been reading fairy or folk tales from European countries.  We have also started reading some Greek myths.  Annie will be making flan with the children next week and we plan on making dishes from other countries also.

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LETTERS WITH BONNIE have included:

  • O for occupation.  The children had lots of dress-up clothes from which to choose to pretend they were a firefighter, horse rider, hair stylist, etc.
  • P for pizza.  Pete’s a Pizza, by William Steig, was acted out and then the children made their own special “paper” pizzas.
  • Q for quilt.  We saw a large handmade quilt, went on a scavenger hunt in the classroom to find quilted ornaments, and then each child made a quilt piece by choosing two pieces of felt, decorating the top piece, putting batting in the middle, and then getting help with tying up loose pieces around the square.

GROWTH, FEELINGS, AND HUMAN DEVELOPMENT will be highlighted.  We have discussed feelings and what makes us feel happy, mad, or sad.  We plan to enlarge upon this with continued reflection by the children in the form of an interview.  We would also love to have photos of each child as a toddler to display, along with a more recent photo of the child.  Please send in a photograph of your child as an older infant or a young toddler.

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BREAKFAST BARS were made from scratch under Annie’s direction.  All the ingredients were measured, mixed, baked, and eaten!  We made extra bars for the people in the homeless shelter and included hand warmers for them as well.  These were delivered to Community Ministries for distribution. There was a classroom discussion about people who don’t have a place to live and how we might be able to help them.

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OTHER CLASS INTERESTS:  Our amaryllis bulb grew and grew so tall, produced buds, and just recently blossomed into fabulous floral display.  – Printing with the use of cookie cutters in different paint colors to depict snowflakes, stars, and the moon. – Tissue paper collage on hearts with glitter highlights. – Woodworking with apple wood, hammering nails and tying colored yarn in various patterns around the nails. – Freeze and mash bananas into smoothies.

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WE NEED COLORFUL SILK for an Easter egg project.  Please send any scarves, shirts, or neckties that you are willing to donate and that is 100% silk.  (SPRING BREAK:  April 17 – 20.)

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BRINGING MONTESSORI HOME:  Develop Concentration.  A focused child is a happy child.  Do not interrupt a child when he is engaged and focused on something.  Encourage focus by paying attention to what sparks enthusiasm and interest in your child and provide opportunities and materials to help this happen.  Limit the amount of TV and videos your child watches.  TV entertains by constantly changing images.  This is occupation, not concentration.

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TIP FOR A HEALTHIER BRAIN:  We must repeat information to learn it.  The richer the sensory experience, the more likely we are to remember it.  We need to try to repeat and use all our senses to help us remember.  – Maren Schmidt