During the months of January and February, the Elementary II students learned about and honored a variety of civil rights events and activists. They expressed their own thoughts and feelings about this pivotal time in our nation’s history and had the opportunity to visit with Mr. Sonny Hereford (one of the first children to integrate in the Huntsville City School System). Below are some of the thoughts and quotes from the children and their journal entries:
“I would help Martin Luther King, Jr. I would walk and not ride the bus. I would join the bus boycott. They were a huge help for Martin Luther King, Jr. and the civil rights movement.” H.P., 3rd grade
“I would be in the marches during the civil rights movement. In the marches you walk to the city holding signs. There might be some signs that say ‘freedom’ or ‘This is not fair.’ That is why I want to be in the marches.” E.M., 3rd grade
“Prior to 1954, segregation in schools was acceptable in the United States. In 1954, Brown v. the Board of Education ruled out segregation. It was illegal to segregate schools.
On November 14, 1960, Ruby Bridges went to William Frantz Elementary. She did not know how the day would be. An angry mob met her. They shouted cruel and horrid things to Ruby as she arrived…” N.R., 5th grade
Our studies in class sparked individual interest in several of the children. They have been checking out books about Rosa Parks, The March on Washington, and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. The children’s inquisitiveness has sparked many great classroom discussions. Educating future generations about peace, positivity, and proactiveness is the best way to extinguish adversity in the future.
“Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Have cannot drive out hate; only love can do that.” Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.
Everyday we share love and care for each other in our classroom. But this is the month of Valentine’s Day. We are celebrating Valentine’s Day throughout this week in a special way. We are having fun cooking classes, making hearts, and working on our Valentine mail bags.
We are celebrating Montessori education week at the end of this month (23-27 February). We are doing some special projects.
Love is important for life. “Love, like that which we feel for the child, must exist potentially between man and man, because human unity does exist and there is no unity without love.” – Maria Montessori.
With lots of love from Toddler-II teachers.
Happy Valentine’s Day.
We know the options some of you are weighing this time of year. You hear the Siren’s call of public school or you want an option that’s more convenient and requires less driving time. And the hardest for us to hear is that you want to stay, but you are worried about transition. If you have to go eventually, you think you might as well go now. While all of these reasons have their logic, we hope you will consider why you chose MSH in the first place.
Montessori education fosters a love of learning. Our students are presented with a myriad of lesson options everyday, and they can experience new concepts through all of their senses. Teachers guide students through learning instead of marching them through a curriculum at a pre-determined pace that may be too fast or too slow for a student’s specific needs. Lessons here are individualized, and your child is able to realize his/her full potential.
Our program educates your whole child. While math and reading are at the heart of our learning, our students also are learning how to resolve conflicts, tend a garden, care for a pet, console a friend, understanding where his or her food comes from, managing a grocery budget and so many other lessons that prepare your child for life, not just a multitude of mandated standardized test.
We hope you choose to stay with Montessori because when you look at current trends in education, the latest research really is not all new. Brain-based learning, the maker movement, inquiry-based learning, project-based learning, motivation theory, the importance of movement, green education, and the list goes on, is inherent in Dr. Maria Montessori’s work. The common core curriculum does not strike fear in the heart of Montessori teachers because they have been teaching children to look at problems from different perspectives for more than one hundred years.
However, the main reason we think you should stay with MSH just a little bit longer is because we work everyday to ensure that your child becomes a capable, confident, compassionate and creative thinker. All the teachers and staff are here because they believe so deeply in the need to nurture future leaders of the world. It is no longer enough to learn for the sake of knowledge. We are here to teach children to create, reason, problem-solve and most of all, lead. We hope you will decide in the weeks to come that you would like to stay on the journey with us…just a little bit longer.
Hello Primary II Families!
January is typically a turning point in the Montessori classroom, a time where you can really see and feel that the children have “normalized.” This is a term Maria Montessori used to describe the goal a teacher works so hard to achieve, when she is able to say, “the children are now working as if I did not exist.” We are now seeing normalization in the Primary II classroom, and at times during our morning work period, Monica and I will smile at each other in acknowledgment that if we were to quietly slip out the door the children would keep working and not even notice.
In addition to our work in Practical Life, Sensorial, Math and Language, January was dedicated to all things space in our classroom! We studied the characteristics of each planet and were amazed at how this topic seized their attention and wonder. The children can recall the order of the planets; and can compare their sizes as well as their composition. Make sure you ask your child a probing question about space; you will be delighted with their knowledge and excitement! We also devoted the month of January to learn about the life of Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. and his peaceful movement towards equality. We had moving discussions during circle time, and were touched by the children’s understanding of what is unjust. On Friday, the Kindergarteners will have the opportunity to hear Mr. Sonny Hereford speak about being the first African American child in the state of Alabama to attend a non-segregated school. We look forward to his presentation each year, it is truly an honor.
February has gotten off to a great start with parent observations. We have a visitor coming every day this month and we love the opportunity to share with you what your children do all day. As a reminder, please make every effort to allow your child a successful start to their day by making sure drop-off is swift and your child is allowed to be independent. This can be as small a detail as ensuring they are walking into the building rather than being carried. This might seem minor, but it is incredibly important. Let your child carry their own belongings into the classroom, and please make sure you are sending them with their MSH school bag. Upon entering the classroom, it is the child’s responsibility to put their lunch and bag in their cubby and to hang their jacket on a hanger before continuing on to hand washing. Every child has had a lesson and can do these tasks beautifully! These simple things set the tone for the rest of the day. If you are struggling with ways to help your child be independent, please come talk to Monica or me, we love to discuss this subject with parents!
As always, thank you for the gift of your children each day and supporting them in their Montessori journey.
Ms. Sarah and Ms. Monica