First we would like to send a special thanks to all the families at Stepping Stone Montessori School for their beautiful holiday gifts. We sincerely appreciate your thoughtfulness. During this season of the year, there is focus on joy, tradition, family, love and hope for the New Year. It’s the most wonderful time of the year!
We have all heard the quotes, “if the world gives you lemons, then make lemonade,” and “You can’t adjust the wind but you can adjust the sails.” In that very spirit, we at Stepping Stone Montessori School have strived to enjoy the season with our students through the media of education. It’s been an exciting journey filled with the fun of learning and growing, and most of all, a great satisfaction that we are able to bring an updated blog about the progress of our students. The beginning of the second semester is a good time to reflect on what we have learned and where we will go from here. I think you will agree with the teachers that the children have matured a lot since the beginning of the school year and are learning so much.
As you know, children need to be spoken to and listened to often. They need a broad exposure to language with correct articulation, enunciation and punctuation. They need to experience different modes of language and hear and tell stories. Most importantly, they need to feel free to and be encouraged to communicate with others.
The special language materials that we use play a vital role in aiding the child to develop the powers of communication, expression, organization and classification, and especially the development of thought. Being a Montessori school, we support them in their learning, give them guidance to classify what they have learned, help them to build their self-confidence, and engage them with meaningful activities. A good example is their working with sand paper letters. The tactile sensations of these letters guide their hands with movements that become fixed in the muscular memory. Such an activity, develop the tactile sensation, the visual sensation and the muscular sensation, helping them to understand that each sound has a symbol.
With the Moveable Alphabet, the children are able to generate a sentence by putting their thought into symbols by “writing” a single word. This will be followed by building phrases. It also serves as an exercise of intelligence free from the mechanism of writing. This way, their intellectual energy can be devoted to sound and word building without having fully developed hand control for writing with an instrument. In our Phonological awareness activities, we have been working on blends and word families. The children also enjoy working with opposites, compound and rhyming words.
Our students are exploring the metal insets. This helps them to learn to hold pencils correctly. This also helps the child to practice different strokes, learn about pencil pressure and ultimately enabling the hand to be ready for handwriting. The practice of metal inset work supports your child in his or her approach to writing. The children have begun the beginning strokes of cursive writing through chalk board work, sand tray work and using the dry erase board. One of our goals at Stepping Stone Montessori School is to teach our students to become independent and self-sufficient in their language and communications skills.
In closing, the memories we create by taking the time to enjoy each other’s company at Stepping Stone Montessori School are blessings that continue long after the trees and wrapping paper have been discarded. Wishing you all a Very Happy New Year!