- Prepare your child. Be sure to help them understand what they can expect. Talk about how the routine will go... "We will walk to your cubby first and put your things away. Then, I will remind you where to find the bathroom and then I'll take you to the door of your classroom. Your teacher will meet us there and we will give one hug, one kiss and one high five and then I will leave."
- Don't be surprised if your child is having a difficult time even if they are returning to the same classroom, with the same teachers, and the same peers.
- Stick to your routine! A change in routine can make separation anxiety even more intense for a child. If you say you are going to give one hug, one kiss and one high five, DO IT! Drawing out the goodbye not only makes it hard but also hinders your child's ability to develop confidence that you are both really expected to do what you say.
- Refrain from entering the classroom. We try to give our students the first 6 weeks to make the environment "theirs" and develop a routine before inviting parents inside. If you have questions about how or what your child is doing be sure to ask their teacher at the end of the day. Or, feel free to call our office and we will check in on your child. But, trust your child that they can develop the skills to make it through their school day.
- Stay calm and let your child know you trust them. Although you might be concerned that your child is going to have a hard transition, be sure to express your confidence in them. If you aren't comfortable leaving campus until you know they are doing okay, you are welcome to hang out in our lobby and our staff will check on your child. Or, give us a call on the phone and we will be happy to check.
- Keep it short. Avoid lingering...this can cause further distress. Rest assured that if your child is unable to settle or remains distraught, we will call you. It is important to us that your child feels this is a safe and peaceful place. If they need a shorter day here in order to build that confidence, we will support them.
- Give it time. It can take up to 6 weeks for children to "normalize." If you have concerns that it is taking your child too long to adjust, be sure to speak with the teachers. They might have some good ideas to help you both.
- Return on time. It can be difficult for children to build trust if their parent and/or teacher tell them that mommy or daddy will "be here soon" and you are not. If you are going to be late, give us a call so we can prepare your child. Unexpected events occur and we are happy to support you and your child so call our office if you are running late.
- Show your child that you trust the teachers. If they feel that you lack confidence in the teachers or the school, they will also lack confidence. Again, if you have concerns about your child's care, please speak with the teachers or administration.
- Ask your child about their day. Let them express frustrations but also ask specific questions that might lead them to remember the good parts of their day. "Did you play in the sandbox today?" "Did your teacher read any stories today? What was the story about?"
- Most importantly - be consistent!
A happy welcome to the new families entering Montessori Community School. Parents, you will soon discover that being a part of a Montessori community is encompassing and the efforts you make towards supporting the Montessori approach will determine the success your child has in this environment. Below is an article by Edward Fidellow which will give you several tips to embracing your new role as a "Montessori Parent."
And so begins your journey......
Becoming a Montessori Parent by Edward Fidellow...
This week, MCS has been celebrating our teachers through Teacher Appreciation Week. Truly, we can not express enough gratitude and thanks for our teachers here at MCS. Their dedication, love, support, and passion toward each child is awe-inspiring. We feel so blessed and grateful for their devotion to each student and Montessori Community School. How our teachers can keep the energy up, continue to plan such wonderful, educational activities, and coordinate so many beautiful ceremonies is a wonder.
To our fabulous teachers, we say, Thank you, thank you, thank you.
"It is also necessary for his physical development to place the soul of the child in contact with creation, in order that he may lay up for himself treasure from the directly educating forces of living nature."
With the weather improving, what could be better than moving some daily learning into the outdoors? Maria Montessori was a real advocate for the learning experiences that take place outdoors. She emphasized the outdoor environment being an extension of the classroom. Our teachers are so fabulous at encouraging and helping our students to enjoy explore, learn, and love the outdoors.
The Children of Ethiopia Education Fund, or COEEF, is a Utah-based organization that provides crucial access to materials, uniforms and an absolutely vital private education to many children in Ethiopia. Fiercely dedicated to the protection and instruction of young girls, COEEF provides a new kind of life in an otherwise perilous, sexist, underprivileged and poverty-driven region of the world. We share the mission of this organization as we mark our 6th year of support to such a pivotal duty of the world’s edification. COEEF takes its place in the school within our Service Learning Program, a program designed to give our students a channel to ignite character, build trust and connect with others through acts of true service.
COEEF was created by a local SLC couple: Norm and Ruthann Perdue, when they traveled to the country with a humanitarian mission. During their service, they learned of the great educational disparity in the upbringing of an Ethiopian child: with classrooms crowded, unfinished and ill-prepared. At the time, less than half of all Ethiopian citizens were able to read, and only half of all Ethiopian children had the opportunity to attend school. The two saw an immediate need for assistance, and they began working on a plan to improve these conditions.
While in Ethiopia, they learned of a child, 12 year old Kidest, whose father had died and whose mother had abandoned her shortly after, unable to manage under the strain of raising her alone. Kidest had been adopted by her grandmother, who managed to send her to a private school, the “Ethiopian Adventist College” with the mere wage that was paid to a hard-labor employee of the school. When Ruthann and Norm became aware of this situation, they connected with Kidest's grandmother and found her bereft in her struggle to finance her granddaughter's education. In her old age, she suffered physical fatigue, and she expressed that she did not know how much longer she could go on working to support Kidest in her pursuit of higher education....