Diary of a First Year Montessori Kindergarten Teacher - Week 5

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Hello Montessori Kindergarten Families,

This week the students began to really take ownership of the school supplies your families provided for the classroom. They are now responsible for getting their own handwriting sheets, going to their individual compartment bin and choosing from 1 of their 3 pencils,completing the work, date stamping it and putting their items back in the bins. I am noticing already the increased sense of pride and ownership of the things they are responsible for and the work they are accomplishing.

This week, though it was a shortened week due to Labor Day, was still packed with opportunities to learn, explore and build on the work we began as early as the first few days of school. We are delving into the science of weather and have incorporated some art from the lovely Ms. Georgia O’Keefe that is displayed in the hallways of the school along with our Rain Clouds in a Jar Experiment.

We have successfully completed our goals outlined for August so we will continue to review these concepts and move into the goals set forth for September. We are going into our final weeks of “30 Days of Kindness” and will soon begin to talk about over 25 different types of emotions we are capable of having as humans and the ways in which we can be kind while recognizing that there are times when we just don’t ‘feel like it.’ I smile when I type this because I will never forget noticing a prior student in the midst of a situation where she was not displaying ‘her best self’ and she said to me, “I like being rude!” 🙂
I hope everyone is having a lovely Grandparents Day. If your kiddos forgot the name of the flowers they painted for the Grandparents, they are Forget Me Nots.

Kindness focus — pick up trash OR help to set the table
This week’s letters: D,d,E,e,F,f
EVERY MONTH the practical life area changes in the classroom — new lessons are given on those works at group time all week
Finish book “I Am Peace: A Book of Mindfulness” by Susan Verde, Illustrations by Peter Reynolds
Practice counting backwards from 20
Handwriting: Write city, state that you live in

Nouns Game #1
Hearing/Vision Tests Today
Extreme Weather conversations/vocabulary: fog, hurricane, drought, precipitation
Review of colors/0–10
Kindness: tell your dad one thing you love about him OR say ‘good job’ to someone
Review of types of clouds
Grace and Courtesy Lesson: Bodies and Boundaries -is it okay to hug a friend without asking? What do you do if someone if trying to hug you or touch you and you don’t want him/her to?

Lesson: How to use a ruler/ measurement/ inches and centimeters/horizon line/ above and below
More discussion on drought, precipitation, hurricane, fog
Kindness: Smile at someone
Nouns Game #2
Lesson: what is an antonym?
skip counting by 2’s to 20

Grandparents Day project: painting forget me nots/working with a ruler/measurement/vertical lines/parallel lines
Beginning sounds: 3 letter phonetic blending
Noun Game #3
Noun sorts: person/place/animal/thing
Grace and Courtesy Lesson: Appropriate vs. Inappropriate Conversation — What words can we use to describe a friend or to give a friend a compliment?

Extending the learning:
I remember when Josey was in kindergarten and one day she came home to tell me she got married. Uh really? At the time I was not a teacher. We were stationed in Colorado and I ran an at home business. So the thoughts I had then are way different now that I am a teacher in a classroom. I asked, “tell me about your wedding.” She and her friends and had planned it because she liked a boy and a boy liked her and she said they kissed. Yep this really happened. I said to her, “Josey, you are only 5 years old, you are not old enough to get married and kiss a boy.” Her response? “What? Nobody told me that!!!”
Perhaps many of you are way ahead of the game and are already talking about this with your kiddos and to you I say BRAVO! But maybe you are like me (and I am talking 7 years ago!) and you think this is not a conversation that your child needs to have yet. I trust your judgement in these situations.

This week we has a situation when a student told another student that the student was ‘hot’ and then later told the student that the student ‘had to always be next to her/him because he/she ‘thought she/he was hot.” I try my best to make sure that we are mindful of conversations going on in the classroom. And I am thankful that I did hear this conversation so that I could address it at group time. But the reality is, I do not hear every conversation. And I am not outside all the time on duty to witness conversations with other students in other classrooms. I just want to keep it on your radar that our children our hearing things ALL THE TIME that may not be what we consider ‘age appropriate’ and I take it seriously that I have the privilege to partner with you to raise healthy and not only physically but emotionally strong and competent people.
Thanks for all you do to raise the future generation who each have light to shine in the world.

Warm regards,
Mrs. Norgren