September Recap: This month has been a great start to are school year. We are pleased to announce that Ms. Janelle is our new lead teacher in room 4. Ms. Blanca is her assistant teacher. They are a great addition to our team here at Belltower Montessori. This month we learned all about ourselves. The theme was a great introduction for our friends in this room as we are all reaching milestones learning and exploring our feelings, body parts, and emotions. We have been talking about personal space and how to properly communicate our wants and needs. We also discussed our family, fingerprints, and our own characteristics. We discussed what friends are and what it means to be a friend. In our classroom we focused on learning self-help skills and learning to put things away after using work. Our Montessori lessons entailed spooning, opening and closing containers, carrying a chair, as well as watering plants. For sensorial we worked with knobbed cylinders, red rods, and coloring. For language we worked with puzzles, objects to pictures, and I spy. For math we worked with sandpaper numbers, cards, and counters. Our special project this month was snack host. We had a few friends that brought special snacks to share with our class. These students got to tell us why they chose the snack they brought and why it was important to them. This snack activity gave the students an opportunity to share with the class something that they enjoy while the class got a chance to experience it as well. We also had back to school night. It was nice meeting all of you that came out to see what is happening in your child’s classroom here at Belltower Montessori. Friday, like every exciting Friday, is share day. Your child gets to bring something from home to share with the class and describe it to them. This activity helps communication skills and it is a fun way for our friends to get to know each other.
October Recap: October has been a fun month for our friends in room 4. We had some amazing visitors during our health and safety week. We had some local fire fighters come and show us their fire engine and even let us use their hose. We also had a visitor from the tooth fairy and a local dentist. Our Fall Carnival and book fair were also this month. Our book fair is a fun way to encourage a love for reading. We focused on learning the routines of the classroom and respecting our materials. We will continue to focus on respecting materials and to pick up after ourselves as we move on to the next activity. We encourage children to be independent and develop the skills needed during these early stages of development. Our class learned about fall leaves and colors. We also focused on planets and the solar system. We sang songs and read books on these subjects.
November Recap: November was a fun and challenging month for our friends in room 4. Our class has grown, and we have been working on teaching our new friends the routines of the classroom. We focused on virtues and values this month. Focusing on these subjects included being kind and helpful. Our class created friendship trees and vegetable prints. We also worked on recognizing letters “I” through “K” in the alphabet and learning the letter sounds. For sensorial we differentiated between red rods, used baric tablets, used rough and smooth boards, a fabric boxes to learn matching and textures. For math we focused on number puzzles, number matching, and number review. We talked about Thanksgiving and decorated turkeys. We had a blast at the holiday feast.
December Recap: December was filled with fun activities learning about celebrations around the world. We made dreidels for Hanukah, candelabras for Kwanza, and a nutcracker for Christmas. We also created art to decorate the class so that it was festive. Thanks to all of you that signed up to bring things and/or came to our Holiday Celebration. The children had a great time singing for family and friends. We read and talked about The Giving Tree. As a class, we discussed nice things that we can give to others. Some letters that we focused on worked on letters “L, M, and N.” Counting and sorting were also parts of our Montessori focus for December.
January Recap: Hi families! January was a great month. We started out talking about our vacations and then went straight into the current season. We read a book called snowy bear that talked about a cute cuddly bear look for place to stay warm. We talked about winter and how it’s cold “brrrrrr”. We made a sensory snow bag where we can make the snow swoosh back and forth. We used water colors to paint a page with winter animals. Our class talked about the letter a o through r. We decorated our own mittens and talked about what animals do to stay warm in the winter. We looked at the world and learned how to differentiate between water and land. We have been practicing counting to 10 using our words and our fingers. At the end of the month we reviewed our letters and what winter is all about.
February Recap: The month of February was full of culture awareness and friendship. We practiced spooning and our pincher grasp skills in practical life. In sensorial we concentrated on the distinction from big, medium, and small with our pink tower. The children were able to manipulate objects around the classroom and put them in order of smallest to largest.
In our Geography lesson this month we learned about Asia and the Lunar new year. For art, the children painted the continent Asia and made Valentine themed art. We focused on the letters s, t, u and v. we worked on the sounds the letters make and things that start with those letters as well. We expanded our lesson to show, and talk about, the children names and helped them find and identify the first letter of their name. Our Friendship/Valentine’s party was a hit! The children had such a wonderful time sharing all the treats with their friends. We want to give a BIG thank you to all the parents who participated.
March Recap: Africa was our focus for March. During circle time the children were shown Africa’s location on both our globe and the map. They were able to paint their own Africa’s using bright and vibrant colors and posted them on our art bulletin board. We talked about the animals that called the African Savanna their home and the children had the opportunity to make their own impressions of what they believed that animal sounded like. We took our Dr. Seuss Spirit week and kept it running all month long! Every week we read a different Dr. Seuss book, the children loved to hear the silly rhymes and illustrations during reading time, their absolute favorite was, “1 Fish, 2 Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish”. We used our ABC Dr. Seuss book to reference our monthly letters W,X,Y and Z. For movement the children used “binocular” hands to “go on a bear hunt” and search for animals around the class.
We reintroduced pouring liquids in the class and all the children had the opportunity to model it for their peers. One of our main focuses this month was the concept of sharing and respecting each other’s feelings and personal things. By discussing these topics and demonstrating to our friends, we’re encouraging a positive social environment and developing fine and gross motor skills. In celebration of St. Patrick’s Day, we painted Shamrocks and went on a GREEN Scavenger Hunt, where the children collected all the items that they could find that were green. We modeled many gross motor skills outside in the playground by having the children “follow what Mrs. Janelle does” to help with coordination and balance. March was a month full of Green Fun!
April Recap: Volcanoes and Islands was our focus in April, we learned about the different layers to a volcano and what lava is. To enhance our curiosity on Australian animals like the Koala bear and Kangaroo, the children were given the choice of which animal they would like to talk about and watercolor. The children were shown the location of Australia on our globe and given an outline of the continent so that they could color it in any way they chose to. Our book of the month was, Chicka Chicka Boom Boom, which our children absolutely adored! They were so excited to follow along with the book and sing the alphabet song. We focused on letters a, b and c as we were reading along. To guide the children in learning the recognition of these letters we used sandpaper letters to help guide the children in learning the shape of each letter.
For our Montessori lessons in Practical Life, the children have been enhancing their skills in spooning, carrying a chair and opening and closing different containers. Enrichment and after school care have been focused on mainly strengthening our children’s gross motor skills, such as hopping on one leg, jumping for bubbles and coordinating our bodies while we follow our teachers through an obstacle course.
Everyone came back from Spring Break ready to explore! I truly appreciate the children’s enthusiasm for learning and enjoy watching their bright eyes ready to tackle the next activity!
May Recap: The month of May was filled with so many exciting things. We started by reading The Very Hungry Caterpillar and discussing the Life Cycle of a Butterfly. We also were given the opportunity to care for five caterpillars and watch them grow and change into butterflies. By the end of the month, everyone could retell the story and our butterflies emerged from their chrysalis right on time! We created activities that involved the letters d, e, f and g. The children enjoyed learning about objects that began with each letter. As a class we practiced tracing and used sandpaper letters to aide recognition. Our focus in May was South America, we found its location on our globe and became acquainted with some animals from that part of the world. The kids absolutely loved the music and took part in dancing to the music.
We began using pre- writing materials in class to help with fine motor movement in the wrist and fingers. We continued our Montessori lessons by practicing pouring dry and wet materials, which will help develop better hand-eye coordination. The Pink tower is an absolute favorite, the children are learning how to handle the materials all while beginning to distinguish the size of each block using sense of touch and sight. Our special project this month was Paper-Mache maracas in light of our geographical theme, we then were able listen to maracas through music. Enrichment focused on free expression through play dough and coloring, then were allotted time to create something and share it with the class. May was full of love starting with our Mother’s Day Tea Party and all the beautiful goodies we received for Teacher Appreciation Week, Thank you from the bottoms of our hearts!
June Recap: The month of June was been filled with so much growth. We talked about community helpers and all the great things they do for us. Our class created lady bugs, poppies and beautiful Father’s Day gifts. We refined our practical life skills and discussed the importance of staying hydrated as the hotter weather approaches. We read, “The Little Red Hen” which touches on the value of being great helpers. our friends caught on quickly. Our letters for the month were h, I, j and k. The Children enjoyed learning about objects that began with those letters and the excitement of looking around the class for them. As we close out the year, I would like to express that it has been an absolute pleasure to work with each and every one of the children and I look forward to seeing them grow even more as we splash through the Summer and begin the next academic year. Thank you for all you have done and continue to do.
Summer News: July is here and we are starting of our Summer program with a “Party in the USA” school wide theme to commemorate 4th of July! We are including daily crafts and under water activities. For our under-water adventures we are going to make scuba gear and would like to ask if you could provide two empty liter bottles to help with our craft? Please bring empty paper towel roles so we can build rockets for space exploration. We are excited to dive into what makes each friend so special and create piglets for our, On the Farm theme. Can’t wait to see you here!