A Welcome Letter from School Director, Britney Peterson

A Welcome Letter from School Director, Britney Peterson

Dear MCS Parents,With open arms and hearts, we welcome you to the 2018 - 2019 Academic year. I always love the energy of the new year and this one is no different. Our hallways are filled with excited students, parents and teachers greeting old friends or meeting new ones. Each material, even down to each individual pencil, has been intentionally placed with care. The floors, walls, materials, etc. are clean and ready to begin a collection of new memories of the year; filled with new adventures, friendships and accomplishments. For most of us, a new school year signifies creating and refreshing goals. We appreciate the support from our parent community as our administration has undergone some changes. We are hopeful the structure of our revised administrative team will bring about opportunity for growth as a school while we still each strive to protect Robyn and Bob's (MCS Founders and Owners) vision...
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The Society by Cohesion: Why Did We Have To Have All These Kids, Anyway?

The Society by Cohesion: Why Did We Have To Have All These Kids, Anyway?

Below you will find a beautifully written article, written by Montessori advocate and author Catherine McTamaney, about how a Montessori classroom functions.  She so concisely sums up some of the most basic and important tenants of a Montessori classroom (including why there are so many kids in a classroom) to describe their place in our environment and, most importantly, their outcome! Enjoy!Glance through some school brochures. You'll notice quite a bit of language in common: whole child, child-centered, low student-teacher ratios, individualized attention. If so many school settings agree that fewer children per teacher is something to brag about, why are Montessori classrooms so large? Remember the basic design principles of a Montessori classroom: multiage classrooms, specialized materials and extended time to explore them, professionally-prepared teachers and individualized curricula to match each child. The curriculum not only complements the first three factors size: it relies on it. Because Montessori classrooms are multi-aged,...
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Illness Policy - When to Send a Sick Child to School

Illness Policy - When to Send a Sick Child to School

The beginning of a new school year can bring many wonderful new things; new friends, new classroom works and new routines are just a few of our favorites.  Unfortunately, new illnesses tend to make an exuberant appearance as well.  While we understand that illness at home can impact schedules and routines (for both parents and children) we want to urge each of you to read up on and abide by our illness policy here at MCS. We will do our part here at school to try to minimize the spread of illness by encouraging lots of hand washing and nose blowing (and then more hand washing) and by sending children and staff home when they are ill.  We ask that you each support us by following the illness policy set forth in our parent handbooks and as listed below so that we might minimize the spread of illness to our students and...
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Letter from Head of School

Letter from Head of School

Dear 2017-2018 MCS Students,Once again, we have reached a crossroads. Some of you will return to our school next year and continue your experience as a part of our community while some of you will move on to new adventures and experiences. Regardless of where the next year finds you, we are honored to have spent this valuable time with you. We congratulate you for your hard work and for being engaged in our community. Montessori Community School's mission is to provide a rich, individualized educational experience, which guides and nurtures the natural unfolding of the whole individual and inspires a lifetime love of learning and peace. Education is a great gift and we feel honored with the opportunity to make peace such an important part of the experience we offer here at MCS. By honoring each individual student and supporting children in becoming their most authentic, passionate, courageous and determined...
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Uinta Adventure 2018 - Fremont Indian State Park

Uinta Adventure 2018 - Fremont Indian State Park













Last week the Uinta class (Upper Elementary, 9-12 year olds) embarked on a great adventure to Fremont Indian State Park. There they enjoyed three days of outdoor fun, experiential learning, and life experiences.  This annual overnight camping adventure was the synthesis of their year’s studies.  As part of their cultural curriculum the students had studied the Fremont Indians while on GO. They explored relationships within and with nature so at Fremont Indian State Park they were able to see and experience first hand much of what they had read and learned about.                                           Students, teachers and parent chaperones worked together to create a comfortable camp space and prepare delicious meals to be shared. While there they participated in a facilitated ropes course. Team challenges such as “The Wall of Integrity” and “Escape...
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Spring Camp 2018

Spring Camp 2018





This year's Spring Camp brought students on an exciting adventure through the rainforest! Campers participated in a number of crafts and sensory learning activities that immersed them in the magical world of South America. On Monday, our students worked to answer the question, "What is the rainforest?" They studied the many layers and characteristics of the rainforest and created their own paper trees. Tuesday, we learned about the animals and insects that call the rainforest home. Early childhood and elementary students were able to create snakes galore with various fun materials, while the Toddlers finger painted their very own sloths and sang "Five Little Monkeys".Wednesday brought the exploration of the rainforest's native plants and birds. Campers created vibrant parrots out of paper plates and colored beautiful pictures of Toucans.Thursday was very special, as friends learned about food and products from the rainforest - and were able to participate in a tasting...
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Technology in the Home

Technology in the Home

We recently had the privilege of hosting a Parent Education Event where a panel of experts prepared and presented information related to the use of screens in the home.  Below you can find some important take aways from that event.  Should you want further information from the event, you can find copies of the handouts on the Scholastic News table in the school lobby.  Current research indicates the use of screens and an investment in social media my be impacting children's ability to regulate emotion and the things kids are missing out on are worth taking a second look at as we establish the patterns around media in the home.  Dopamine, oxytocin and seratonin levels are impacted by screen use and in turn, other areas of the child and family are being impacted.  The argument that we live in a time that its impossible (or even difficult) to escape the use of...
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2018 Early Childhood Performing Arts Showcases

2018 Early Childhood Performing Arts Showcases




In the month of February our Early Childhood students had the opportunity to perform on stage for their parents and teachers! It was a lovely experience for all.  The purpose of the showcases is to give parents a glimpse of what their students are working on in class.  Showcases also allow children the chance to learn what it is like to be on stage. Although this is the first time many of our students have been on stage, their enthusiasm for performing for loved ones was contagious! During each showcase the students smiled & waved at the sight of family and friends. As a Montessori program, we take pride in our Specialty classes as an opportunity to offer students experience in a variety of classes and skills.  Their experience in each of these classes is somewhat limited but the opportunity to learn more about their interests, along with skills taught about how to find...
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2018 All School Assembly

2018 All School Assembly





Each year we attempt to come together as an entire school at least twice per year.  We begin each year with a gathering for International Day of Peace, where we meet on the green space to sing together before walking the campus to see the prayer flags made by each student at MCS.  Typically, our second gathering is in the gym and consists of some kind of science or cultural presentation. This year was especially enjoyable! This morning we had the pleasure of hosting Ballet Folklorico Quetzalcoatl, a local Mexican Folk Dance group, for our 2018 All School Assembly.  The group presented a variety of dances, music and costumes, all of which were delightful!The first number was called Son Jarocho, is from Veracruz and is the main manifestation of the veracruzana party, whose origin is a mixture of Spanish airs influenced by African rhythms, executed with jarana, requinto and harp among...
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A Sustainable Living Tip - Composting…Indoors!

A Sustainable Living Tip - Composting…Indoors!

  Indoor composting can be a fun way to incorporate science into your family routines, particularly during the winter months. This article  from Cornell Composting shares some great tips for indoor composting with children!Happy Composting!Source: Jen Fong and Paula Hewitt http://compost.css.cornell.edu/worms/steps.html
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A Sustainable Living Tip - Celebrating Trees

A Sustainable Living Tip - Celebrating Trees


Last Wednesday, January 31 marked the ending of the Jewish holiday of Tu B’Shevat—the Jewish New Year for trees. Tu B’Shevat is a celebration of trees and all the resources trees provide. The celebration of this holiday serves as reinvigoration of appreciation for these amazing lifeforms.    Trees provide a wonderful way to connect kids to their natural world. There are many ways to promote mindfulness about our environment by helping kids consider all the ways trees enrich our lives. Trees are important symbols of life and systems.    One fun idea for appreciating and understanding the changes and lifecycles of trees is to “adopt a tree”. To do this, locate a beloved tree in area that is visited often. Draw the tree, measure the tree, name the tree, recognize all the wonderful things about that tree. Keep a tree journal where reflections, drawings and data about that tree are collected...
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Keeping Up to Date With Environmental Legislation - A Sustainable Living Tip

Keeping Up to Date With Environmental Legislation - A Sustainable Living Tip

The 2018 Utah Legislative Session is underway! Need help following and better understanding some of the proposed legislation regarding environmental stewardship in Utah? Below are some links to helpful online bill trackers. Sierra Club Priority Bills *Provides an option to sign up for weekly 2018 Utah Legislative Updates HEAL Utah Bill Tracker *Provides an option to sign up for weekly 2018 Utah Legislative Updates Action Utah Bill Tracker *See the section on Environmental Stewardship
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Sustainable Living Tip: Buying In Bulk

Sustainable Living Tip: Buying In Bulk

Dear MCS Families and Friends,Happy New Year! The Sustainability Committee is excited to announce that each week we will be writing about a tip for sustainable living. This week's tip will focus on buying foods from the bulk bin section at the grocery store. While shopping from the bulk bin section can take a bit more time, it does reduce packaging waste, save money, and provide many non-processed/minimally processed food options. Most major grocery stores have a bulk bin section. One way to make buying from the bulk bin section nearly waste free is to bring reusable sacks. Below is a list of links for retailers that sell bags especially made for bulk food shopping. These bags are virtually weightless, so won't they won't add to the cost of your purchase. I personally recommend the Kootsac bags sold on Etsy. The Kootsac bags are durable for heaving items like beans and...
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Local Screenagers Screening

Local Screenagers Screening

AN AWARD-WINNING FILM THAT PROBES INTO THE VULNERABLE CORNERS OF FAMILY LIFE AND DEPICTS MESSY STRUGGLES OVER SOCIAL MEDIA, VIDEO GAMES AND ACADEMICS. THE FILM OFFERS SOLUTIONS ON HOW WE CAN HELP OUR KIDS NAVIGATE THE DIGITAL WORLD. https://www.screenagersmovie.com/
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Why Podcasts are Good for Kids

Why Podcasts are Good for Kids

Do you have a long car ride ahead for Thanksgiving or just looking for activities to do with your kids off screens? How about a podcast? I love podcasts and listen to them with my kids often because, as I’ve written about before, we have a rule in our family about not using cellphones in the car. Every time we hear a new one we learn something, and it sparks conversation and debate. Furthermore, as Stephanie Hayes writes in the Atlantic: “The absence of images in podcasts seems to be a source of their creative potential. Without visuals, listeners are required to fill the gaps—and when these listeners are children, the results can be powerful. Numerous studies have found that children between the ages of seven and 13 respond more creatively to radio stories than to stories shown on television. Audio stories prompt kids to draw more novel pictures, think up...
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Building the Adult Community

Building the Adult Community

Oftentimes when parents visit our school for a tour, they ask about our staff. How long have the staff been here? How often is there turnover of employees?  Are the people who work here happy?  While these are difficult questions to answer without the input of the teachers themselves, we often find ourselves describing the vision for community and how that applies to our staff.  The human factor is strong in a community such as this where we have over 200 children, at least twice that many active parents, grandparents and guardians, and a total of 62 employees.  With so many people under our roof, we have discovered that building community is essential to providing successful outcomes.  We strive to build community in a number of ways; including in and among classrooms, with parents, and as a staff.  Below is an article written by one of our Lower Elementary teachers, Brandi Allen, who...
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A Note from the MCS Green Committee

A Note from the MCS Green Committee

In our last note, the MCS Green Committee discussed the importance of minimizing packaging in the lunches/snacks we send with our students to school. There are many alternative lunch packaging options that help reduce waste and provide a cost effective way to give kiddos an awesome meal. Many of you already use reusable lunch packaging. However, listed below are some websites for possible eco-friendly lunch packaging/meal service products. We are certainly not pushing these items, but offering ideas (they might also be great holiday gifts). Let us know your thoughts on any of these products, or if you have other great ideas. Likewise, a bulk order discount option might be possible if there is enough interest. Any parents interested in the bulk order, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.,MCS Green Committee https://bentgo.com/ https://www.yumboxlunch.com/ https://www.planetbox.com/ https://www.bamboozlehome.com/tinyfootprint-products https://avanchy.com https://www.shopbamboostudio.com https://www.bambuhome.com
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Social Development in the Montessori Classroom

Social Development in the Montessori Classroom

Through the years I have often been asked about Montessori students and their development of social skills. Some parents, when considering a Montessori education, become concerned that because of the size of the facility, the mixed age groupings, or the limited number of classrooms that their child will somehow be "missing out" on some aspects of social development. The short answer is that although there might not be as many children on our campus, the opportunities to develop socially are unlimited in the organization of the classrooms and curriculum.  "Social life does not consist of a group of individuals remaining close together, side by side, nor in their advancing en masse under the command of a captain like a regiment on the march, nor like an ordinary class of school children. The social life of man is founded upon work, harmoniously organised and upon social virtues - and these are the attitudes...
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Effective Parent Teacher Conferences

Effective Parent Teacher Conferences


Parent Teacher Conferences will be held on Friday, November 17th. There will be no school that day. Sign-up sheets for the conferences are on a table in the lobby, arranged by class, from Toddlers to Upper Elementary (please check the top of each page for the name of the class). As we do every year, we ask that you observe the following requests:· Please sign up for one meeting time per child.· Please be on time for your conference.· Please help the teachers to stay on time.· Please arrange for childcare during Parent/Teacher conferences.We have had parents make requests for child care during the conferences. Unfortunately, as our staff is busy meeting with parents and all of our classrooms, along with some other spaces in the school, are being used we have not been able to accommodate this request. Please note that our playgrounds and our Outdoor Classroom are closed during conferences...
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PSA Raises Funds for an AED for MCS!

Montessori Community School has recently been approved for a grant that will pay the majority of the cost for MCS to receive an AED. Our PSA have since been diligently working to raise the remainder of the funds necessary for the school to acquire the AED.  To date, we have raised just over $300
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