Children’s House February 2011

“We especially need imagination in science. It is not all mathematics, nor all logic, but is somewhat beauty and poetry”. 

Maria Montessori 

In the Earth-science unit the children learned about:

  • How rocks change over a long period of time and can be grouped in three main categories based and how and where they are formed.
  • The earth’s crust is broken in large plates that move slowly, and along the connection lines earthquakes and volcanoes can appear.
  • Deep under the earth’s crust it is so hot that the rocks melt and this melted material is called magma.
  • When magma finds cracks in the crust and moves up it is called lava, and can form volcanic mountains.
  • Dinosaurs lived long before humans appeared, and we know about them from their fossilized remains.
  • The practical use of various rocks and minerals
  • Landforms

The rock collection was mostly a training corner for visual and tactile senses, although we have also seen children smelling or enjoying the sounds of knocked rocks. Through manipulatives such as cardboard plates with buildings of wooden blocks on top we imitated earthquakes; with play-dough we took shell prints and covered them with cement to imitate the preservation of fossils. Sorting and matching pebbles, matching dinosaurs with their footprints, watching a soda/vinegar “volcano” erupt were a few of the addition to our classroom activities.

The book of the month was “Millo and the Magical Stone” by Marcus Pfister, a story about taking and giving, a metaphor for the effects of excessive use of our earth’s resources. 

In Europe we looked at Germany, Austria, Switzerland, Greece, and Italy with songs, words, games, stories and pictures.

Song of the month: “Old Saint Helen” – about the volcanic eruption from1980.

The theme for March will be Weather and Weathering, and we will do experiments with air and water. In geography we will have a few more stops in Europe and then will move to Asia. Sea Life: Invertebrates. 

Kindergarten    

            The advanced readers have taken upon themselves to read to each other, and some days it seams they cannot get enough. We overheard them saying; “reading is fun”

Riddles and word games are also new favorite activities, as the language skills get refined and the abilities to understand jokes emerge.

We talked about symmetry and looked for lines of symmetry in hearts, crystals, geometric shapes, words, letters and numbers. We put different objects in front of two mirrors, mobile at variable angles, to see and think about symmetry and reflections.

On Presidents day we discussed about what is a president, what qualities are important for a good lieder. Here are some of the answers we heard from the children, word by word! To be a good president one has to: “work hard”, “know a lot of things”, “think hard”, “know how to talk”, “say the truth”, “respect the law” and “a president needs help”.

Reminders 

  •  Parents Night on March 16, 6:00-8:00 p. m. – this session is focused on math through Montessori materials and how science is presented to the young children
  • Parents-Teacher conferences run throughout the month of March, before and after school hours. A sign up paper will be available at drop off and dismissal time
  • Re-enrollment forms are due and important in planning for the next school year.

Dorina Nimigean