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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2017 - 2018 MCS Parent School Alliance

2017 - 2018 MCS Parent School Alliance

Montessori Community School Parent School Alliance (PSA) L-R: Gaea Rindflesh, Teresa Nelson, Jordan Stein, Jeannette Shaffer, Dave Quisenberry, Jaymison Peterson and (below) Jen Zivkovic The MCS Administration is delighted to introduce you to our 2017 - 2018 Parent Student Alliance (PSA). We are pleased to have a larger number of PSA representatives than ever before. We appreciate Jeannette, Dave, Jaymison and Jen for joining us again this year as our veteran PSA and we thank Gaea, Teresa, and Jordan for joining the team!The PSA is already looking forward to and has a jumpstart on planning many PSA sponsored activities this year. We anticiapte seeing many of you at the upcoming Welcome Picnics where you can meet members of the PSA and will be introduced to the Community Builders from your child(ren)s class.  We are also looking forward to our first Coffee Thursday, this coming week September 7th, from 8:30am-9:30am in the lobby. Don't forget...
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Welcome to 2017-2018 from MCS Admin

Welcome to 2017-2018 from MCS Admin

Dear Montessori Community  School Families, Each year as we welcome back our returning students and families and welcome our new students and their families to our school community we feel such a sense of anticipation for all the experiences we will enjoy together during the academic year.  By the time that the children  arrive the teachers have worked tirelessly for 7 days to prepare their  beautiful environments for the arrival of their students. There is such a buzz of anticipation that is infectious. Everyone is so excited about all the possibilities of the new school year. And finally the children are here and the year begins. It is always such a special time for all of us. As we move forward this year we want you all to know that we are grateful to all families who have entrusted their beautiful children into our care. We are dedicated to "following each child" to  best...
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Becoming Familiar with MCS Safety Policies and Procedures

Becoming Familiar with MCS Safety Policies and Procedures

In an effort to help you get started on the right foot we would like to remind you about some of our safety procedures here at MCS. We ask that you remain mindful of them as they play a very important role in keeping our students safe and accounted for at all times.  These policies and more can be found in our Toddler/Early Childhood Parent Handbook and our Elementary Parent Handbook. Sign-In and Pick-UpFor safety measures, all students need to be signed in and out each day. Sign-in/out sheets are located outside of each classroom. We ask that you park, enter the school, sign in/out your child and check your child’s bulletin board for special announcements. Only parents or persons with written authorization (either listed in the child’s Emergency Medical Release form or through the Alternate Pickup form) may pick up a child. The sign-in and out sheets not only tell us who dropped off and picked up on...
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2017 Uinta Adventure

2017 Uinta Adventure






Last week our Upper Elementary students, the Uinta class, set adrift for an amazing Adventure to Split Mountain, Vernal. They enjoyed three days of fun, learning, and life experiences. Despite the inclement weather they adventured to the max and had a blast. They are made of stern stuff!   Students, teachers and parent chaperones did a service learning project at Josie's Cabin, rafted the Green River (in the snow!), enjoyed a beautiful hike in the area and visited the Dinosaur Quarry. Students spent the year earning funds for their adventure through the Montessori Market and preparing for their rafting trip with their in-depth GO studies of the water shed. This adventure was a culmination of many important Upper Elementary lessons; from planning and executing a trip to in-depth follow up to their outdoor studies and many things in between. Thank you to everyone who shopped the Market and supported their other business ventures for making this...
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How can failure be a gift?

How can failure be a gift?



When I started teaching 20 years ago, childhood was altogether a different experience.  Raising children looked different than it does now and, since I'm now in the midst of raising my own three children, I believe this more than ever before.  The single most important thing I think we may be missing with this generation of parenting is the realization that growth comes from failure!  Scary concept, right?  But honestly, when everything goes according to plan, there are no hiccups in the way, or any process is simple, precise and easy we learn very different lessons than when we have to struggle and stretch.  I think it would be fair to say that your own failures (or struggles, at the very least) provided clear opportunities for learning and growth. I recently watched a really wonderful TedTalk called "The power of believing that you can improve" by Carol Dweck in which she uses the word...
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Join the MCS PSA!

Join the MCS PSA!


MCS-Parent School Alliance T.E.A.M.Together Everyone Achieves More!  Before I became involved in the PSA, I noticed for years that most of the burden fell on one or two people, and I thought that was just too much; especially when you are juggling kids, work and life. So when I was asked by the MCS Administration to get involved, I suggested a restructuring of the PSA to become a “Team” representing all the age groups but with an emphasis on the Toddler and Early Childhood groups since they are our meat and potatoes.  This PSA Team concept is now completing its second year with, I believe, great success on many levels.  First, the obvious, the 6 reps share the roles, no one person is working alone; second, we have more of a presence on campus as a team; and third, we actually enjoy each other and collectively want to generate excitement and...
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All School Assembly - Utah Okinawa Kenjinkai Cultural Experience

All School Assembly - Utah Okinawa Kenjinkai Cultural Experience


Our Second Annual All-school Assembly took place Wednesday morning at MCS! All of our staff and students, from toddlers to elementary, gathered for an incredible presentation. The Utah Okinawa Kenjinkai group shared a beautiful performance about their cultural Japanese heritage. They introduced us to Okinawan traditional music, dances, folk craft, and martial arts while briefly discussing the Japanese history associated in a fun and enlightening way. A lot of our young toddler friends enjoyed singing and dancing throughout the assembly while our older friends were impressed by the costumes and instruments. In the traditional Okinawan dance, the Eisa, there is a closing song to end the performance. We were invited to join the dancers and dance together waving our hands to the beat of the music and drums. It was a great experience for all of our students to enjoy this cultural opportunity as a whole community.Check our last year's experience...
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