We have enjoyed the last few weeks of Spring! The children have been very interested in observing new animals outside. One afternoon, they located two frogs, worms, snails, and lots of insects.
We have had a variety of birds visiting our bird feeders. In class, I will hear one child asking the other children to practice the Silence Game because he/she would like to observe a bird at the feeder.
The children have been busy preparing the garden with Nora. Thanks to Nora for volunteering to oversee the Community Garden on behalf of the children. It was very exciting to dig in the soil, remove weeds, and find some garden grubs! We have planted some fruits and vegetables, and will continue with the garden over the next few weeks. We are looking forward to planting some sunflowers.
The children continued work with the Montessori materials in all areas of the classroom. We continued our study on South America. The interesting animals of South America were very popular with the children. As well, the children enjoyed a visit to the library.
“Education is a natural process carried out by the human individual, and is acquired not by listening to words, but by experiences in the environment.” Maria Montessori
This week the children all enjoyed new lessons with the Montessori materials. It has been fascinating to watch them grow in concentration, independence and confidence. The new art tray in the Practical Life area is always very popular. However, the standard Montessori materials such as the pink tower, broad stairs, and knobless cylinders are also explored by the children, with more in-depth interactions each time (this comes with repetition). It is in the repetition of the activity that the child will gain mastery and learn the concept.
The children were very excited to meet Mr. Mike at the Huntsville Fire Department! Thanks for the amazing tour of the firehall, trucks, and equipment. There were many highlights, but the children were most excited to spray the fire hose.
A big thank you to Martina Schroer for donating pansies to the children. They were so proud of the Children’s Flower Garden at the front of Sabrina Park. It was an exciting way to learn about weeding, gardening, flowers, and invertebrates (we found a few bugs and worms in the soil).
Happy Mother’s Day,
The children enjoyed the beautiful weather outside and discovered some new signs of Spring this week. Montessori placed a great emphasis on learning from nature. The Casa-aged children thrive from learning outside, and are able to use all of their senses while exploring new ideas. “There must be provision for the child to have contact with nature; to understand and appreciate the order, the harmony and the beauty in nature.” Maria Montessori
An interesting book, Last Child in the Woods: Saving Our Children From Nature-Deficit Disorder, Richard Louv wrote about nature-deficit disorder where children are becoming increasingly disconnected from the natural world, resulting in attention difficulties and other problems.
Children can learn so much from nature, and Montessori felt that outdoor education can be an excellent extension of the classroom. This week, the children decided to create a sink/float experiment using some items from nature and watching them in the stream (we have a beautiful wooded area and stream behind Sabrina Park).
The children decided to experiment with leaves, some sticks, rocks and some fungus. One child exclaimed, “Look! Rocks sink and sticks float!” with great enthusiasm after his own discovery.