December Sandpiper Newsletter
As the end of the year comes quickly, we have a few special events coming up. The children have been working hard on their crafts for the Puerto Rico service project. All the things they have been making: clay animals and necklaces, beaded bracelets, book marks and jump ropes, will be for sale next Friday. We hope you will also contribute something to our bake sale. The room parents will be sending out more details about that.
The same day is our Presentation Day! The children will be practicing giving their lessons this week and ready to teach you all some amazing Montessori work on Friday morning from 8:15-9:00. We’ll ask you to make sure to have your child at school by 8 so they can set up.
Speaking of being at school by 8, we’re having a small schedule change. To be able to use the stage consistently for Drama practice, we are changing our Drama time to 8:00-9:00 on Thursday mornings. This allows us to keep as much uninterrupted work time as possible afterwards.
I have noticed a trend where a lot of our children are arriving between 8 and 8:15, or even later, so if there’s any way your family can shift that to arriving before 8, it would really help us out. The children love to have a few minutes to socialize when they come in the door. There is always a haircut or a new coat to admire, some piece of news to share, or just the natural, excited hellos of 6-9 year olds. As different children arrive later and later in the morning, that does push back further the moment where everyone is settled into their work. Thank you!
Our class is finally finished with the Minli series of books that we have been reading aloud. I hope you have been able to hear a bit about the story along with your child. We have started a new book, The Birchbark House by Louise Erdrich. It is a great story about a young Ojibwa girl and it complements the class-wide study of Native American cultures that we are just beginning. As part of our studies, some of the children have helped draw a large map of North America on one wall of our classroom. As the children learn new things about the different tribes and cultures, they’ll be able to add drawings and facts to the appropriate parts of the map. They do love class-wide collaborative projects like this, and I hope they will be sharing what they’ve learned with you, or even finding opportunities to learn more at home.
I like to give a warning to parents that learning about the Native Americans naturally brings up many issues of injustice in history and I do my best to present things in an honest but child-friendly way. Dr. Montessori specifically observed that children this age are interested in moral questions as they begin trying to figure out the world. Depending on your child’s age and understanding, you may find opportunities to have conversations about unfairness in the world and your family’s values.
Just a reminder that the last day of Montessori work before the Holiday Break/ Enrichment starts is December 15th, and we’ll come back to our regular work on January 2nd.