Summer Recap: Our class had a lot of fun activities this summer. One of the activities that our children enjoyed was splash day. Our friends built stronger bonds through play as they joined in the water festivities. We also had some fun in-house field trips. The reptile show filled the children with excitement as they learned about slithery and scaly creatures. We had the opportunity to get up close and touch exotic reptiles while learning new textures. The magic show was very exciting. Our children were left amazed and filled with wonder from the amazing tricks they witnessed from the witty magician. Parents and families had the opportunity to come in and join us for family picnic. It was fun to see how many families came out to participate building a sense of community among Belltower Montessori’s school population. We had some fun alternate activities instead of outside time due to weather restrictions and air quality this summer. We played social games working together with friends to strategize while developing cognitive thinking. For the last part of our summer program we will have a carnival and a bubble show. We look forward to those upcoming events.
September Recap: The first month of our school year has now passed. It has been great getting to know new friends and creating stronger friendships with our friends that were with us during our summer program. Back-to-School Night was great opportunity to get to know the families of the children our room as well as getting to know what we do here in room 6 on a regular basis. It is important to build a sense of community as we grow and learn together. For the month of September, we focused on our family tree. The children talked about their families, who are in their families, and who lives with them. The children learned that some of their classmate’s family dynamics are different than their own because people come from different cultures and upbringings. We are all unique individuals and it is important to get to know the world around us. We have also been working on being self-sufficient in the classroom. Cleaning up after ourselves teaches us to be responsible and clean. It is important to put our tools away in the proper place so that things do not get lost and they are presentable for the next friend to use. We also focused on learning about the continents and the names of the oceans. We used globes to show children these concepts for better understanding and deeper learning.
October Recap: October has been a fun and exciting month. The children have enjoyed creating stronger bonds and friendships with their peers. We talk daily about our calendar, the days of the week, the date, and the year. For the month of October, we focused on the solar system, outer space, planets, astronauts, and spaceships. We did a project that focused on land vs. water. We made an island and we made a lake out of clay. When the clay dried, we poured the water in the correct places. The activity gave the children a hand on visual to understanding the difference between lakes and oceans. We also focused on the Earth. We have also been reading about different landforms. For art, the children worked on their landforms by doing push pin work creating their landforms on paper. October was all about the five senses. We also did many things in relation to the fall season, we learned the life cycle of a pumpkin, the parts of the pumpkin using nomenclature cards. The children loved our pumpkin craft. Each Child brought in and decorated their own pumpkin. We displayed them in our own pumpkin patch in the classroom. We studied about North America and the flags, also the animals, people and vegetation involved with this continent. We also have improved our outside garden and we cannot wait to see what will grow in the following months.
November Recap: In November we focused on new and exciting learning adventures. We learned about the United States, California, and the culture of America. We also discussed how we can be helpful individuals at school, at home, and in our communities. We talked about the importance of being honest, having integrity, and working together. Our class had fun creating our turkey projects. We also had a great time during our Thanksgiving feasts. The Montessori lessons that we focused on were washing hands, blowing our noses properly, sitting at the table, and cleaning the table after meals and snacks. These lessons help children become responsible and respectful of things and people around them and are part of the Grace & Curtesy curriculum. Another activity that our children enjoyed was sharing with their classmates what they are thankful for.
December Recap: December was a fun month filled with crafty adventures here in room 6. We learned all about Celebrations from around the world. We learned about Kwanzaa, Hanukah, as well as the tradition of Christmas. The children had a great time with the surprise visit from Santa. I hope you enjoyed the pictures from the Santa excitement. Children in our classroom worked hard creating a special holiday gift that you can keep for years to come. We hope you all had a wonderful winter break. A lot of our Montessori lessons were incorporated in the holiday fun. Thanks to all of you that came to our Holiday performances and celebration. It was a fun time for the children.
January Recap: January was a fun and exciting month. I hope you all enjoyed the holiday breaks with friends and family. Our theme for month of January was winter, snow and Ice. We discussed winter clothing in the circle time and what is appropriate attire for the weather. The children did some activities about Antarctica and animals that live there. During circle time we read some books about animals in the winter, and snowmen. For our Montessori lessons children did art work about snowman, snowflakes, polar bears.
February Recap: During circle time in February, our class talked about cultural awareness and friendships. We talked to our children about the different cultures in our rooms and what they like to do with their families. We asked questions like, “Where does your family live?”, “What do you eat?” and “Do you have a special song?”.
For Montessori lessons we discussed the seven continents and the children studied about the continent Asia. We read a book about Chinese New Year and the children brought traditional Chinese items from home to share with the class. The children also explored our class cultural box and learned about India and the Taj-Mahal. The children had a great time listening to Indian and Japanese music during enrichment. During circle time we talked about who our friends were and what are some nice things we do for them.
Our book of the month was Little Blue Little Yellow, which taught the children the value of friendship and introduced them to the concept of primary and secondary colors. We did a group art project where the children mixed Blue and Yellow paint to see what color they could create. We want to thank all our amazing parents for bringing items in for our Valentine’s Day party. The children had a blast making your Valentine’s Day cards, so we really hope you enjoyed them!
March Recap: In March, our children learned about the African Savanna, and the animals that call it their home. During circle time we read books that illustrated some of the habitats and discussed the food chain. The children participated by telling what animals they believed were carnivores and which were herbivores and as class we talked about which category each animal was a part of. For art the children colored coloring pages of their favorite African Savanna animal and described the main body parts. In honor of Dr. Seuss’s Birthday, the children brought in their favorite Dr. Seuss book and shared it during circle time. It was great to see the children create their Dr. Seuss hats which also incorporated pattern skills.
During our Montessori work cycle the children created their very own clouds using shaving cream and glue. They enjoyed seeing the shaving cream expand and create 3D clouds. The class really enjoyed going out to the garden and planting tomatoes, basil, bell peppers and cucumbers. For our Enrichment activities the children explored the unique sounds of Africa! The children worked on rhythm, singing and how to move your body using the space around you. Our St. Patrick’s Day Gold Hunt was a blast! That morning we joined our friends from room 7 and celebrated out in the playground. The children were so excited to see that a naughty leprechaun had turned their classroom upside down and left a special surprise once they came back in.
April Recap: In April we focused on the formation of islands and volcanoes. During circle time children were shown pictures of the different types of volcanoes and then were given the opportunity to make their own islands and volcanoes using clay. In honor of Earth Day, we talked about the importance of taking care of our planet by knowing how to dispose of our waste properly. They then process or breaking down waste and what can be reused and recycled. They learned the difference between trash that is biodegradable and trash that is not. We modeled this by doing a group lesson where each child was given an object and had to decide in which bin it belonged to and why. They sorted waste made of plastic, compost, aluminum and paper.
Our Montessori lessons for the month of April focused on the importance of taking care of ourselves and the environment around us. The children continued to work on putting their jackets on and folding and washing their clothes. The children had fun doing a few springtime art projects like coloring and labeling parts of a tree and using their creativity to decorate an egg. Our Easter party was so fun, and the children had a blast! We want to thank all the parents that contributed, we couldn’t have done it without you. Open House had a great turn out and children had a wonderful time showcasing their work.
May Recap: In May we discussed whales, their migrations and habitats. During circle time we went in depth about their diets, how they take care of their calves and during what seasons they migrate and where to. They learned many fun facts about Blue Whales like; they are the biggest animal in the ocean, and in the world! They have huge, broad long heads that have a unique U-shape arch and can reach up to a quarter of their body length in size. Blue whales eat krill, which are tiny, shrimp – like crustaceans that live throughout Earth’s ocean. Blue whales can eat up to four tons of krill every day.
We explored the continent of South America and the theme has been integrated into every area of the classroom. Our children worked with the puzzle map of South America, reproducing the flags of Brazil and Chile, and labeled the layers of a rainforest. Also, they learned that South America is home to many interesting and unique species of animals, including the llama, anaconda, anteater, agouti, armadillo and chinchilla. They learned the longest river in South America is the amazon river and watched an informational video on the animals and plants that live in the river and around it!
During our Montessori work cycle the children learned about the anatomy of a whale, butterfly, bird and frog and their functions. We went over the life cycle of a butterfly and watched our caterpillar’s chrysalis and transform into a beautiful butterfly and released them onto the playground. Our Mother’s Day celebrations were full of love and joy! The children had so much fun during their Mother’s Day Tea Party and mothers enjoyed their special craft and card.
June Recap: Community Helpers was our topic for the month of June. We talked to our children about different community helpers and discussed what they do to help our society. For share day we discussed who were their favorite community helpers and if they knew anyone who is a helper to our community.
Our Montessori lessons revolved around California. The children explored the class cultural box and colored the California Republic Flag. We were also able to explore the United States puzzle map and pointed out where California was located. The book of the month was The Little Red Hen, it is a tale written for children to help teach the values of hard work and self-reliance. In the story, the little red hen finds a seed of wheat, which she then decides to plant in order to make bread.
Our Father’s Day celebration was full of love and joy! The children had so much fun during Father’s Day, and our fathers enjoyed their special craft and card. We are so happy that so many dads were able to come join us on that day. This year came and went so quickly, and we are excited to start a new year. We will miss our friends who are leaving us, and we are excited to continue the fun with all our friends who will be returning to us next year. We hope you all have a great summer.
Summer News: July is here and our summer program includes indoor and outdoor activities, plus opportunities for fun, friendship, and exploration. The daily routine is relaxed and allows ample social opportunities, outdoor play, water and enrichment activities. Each month is thoughtfully planned and full of fun learning opportunities. The children will explore underwater life, outer space, life on a farm, fitness, and spirit week. Our annual carnival will end our summer and we look forward to seeing you all there.