Montessori Buzz – Dec. 14, 2021
A message from Tina
Dear MA Families,
Three days left – we can do it! I know it feels like things are changing rapidly in the city and many are feeling unsettled. Below are some new pieces of information and developments I can share with you.
Winter Break Rapid Antigen Testing Program
- The school was approved and the test kits were picked up today (pictured!).
- The program is for school age students – Casa through Year 8.
- These will be sent home Friday with instructions on how to use them and the recommended days to test your child.
- This is voluntary, so please let your child’s teacher know if you do not want to participate and they will not send a kit home in your child’s blue bag (or backpack for the older students).
- I believe this measure the government has put in place is a strong indicator that schools will open on time after the Winter Break. Early detection of cases and identifying them before students return to class will be key in supporting an expected return to school on January 3.
- The hope is that the MLHU continues to manage schools after the break in the same way they have before the break – on a situational basis.
Vaccine Timelines for 5- to 11-year-olds
- We have heard that children in this age bracket are being vaccinated after a 3 week timeframe instead of 8 weeks, at both mass vaccine clinics as well as certain pharmacies. The National Advisory Committee on Immunization recommends that the second dose should be given at least 8 weeks after the first dose, as the 8 week timeframe can provide longer lasting protection. However, children can get it earlier if they need to, with informed consent. If you wish to explore this option for your child, you can call the Vaccine Hotline at the MLHU 226-289-3560 to learn more and adjust your second dose appointment if you choose to go this route.
New Guidelines from the MLHU
- Due to the high transmissibility of the Omicron variant, effective yesterday (December 13, 2021), all cases of COVID-19 are being managed as if they are the Omicron variant.
- Effective Immediately – All close contacts, regardless of vaccination status, are required to self isolate for 10 days and get tested. If you are aware that someone you were in close contact with has tested positive, do not wait for the health unit to call you. Start isolating right away.
- Go for testing immediately and again on or after Day 7 from the last date of exposure. A negative COVID-19 test result after Day 7 of your exposure is required to come out of self-isolation. The 10-day self-isolation period must be completed regardless of receiving a negative test result.
- Limit indoor social gatherings in private dwellings to 10 people or less. All attendees 12+ should be vaccinated.
- Unvaccinated individuals 12+ should avoid non-essential indoor contact with individuals outside of their household.
- As of Jan.4, 2022, anyone over 18 years of age can book their booster vaccine.
I know this is not where we expected to be coming into the holidays and it can bring a whole mixed bag of emotions – sometimes different ones within the same hour! For various reasons, many are feeling exhausted and overwhelmed, and are tired of the pandemic life. We get it, because we are too, but here’s the thing – it’s ok to be feeling all over the map, however if you can, try to see the good. I know how hard this can be, but if you have been on any Zoom call with me, you will know these words sit behind me on the wall, so I literally see them every day. It’s a reminder that you can find it and sometimes it is in the smallest places that just gives you that injection of joy you need (for me it is our Instagram feed!). What is it in your day that brings you joy no matter what? Is that first cup of coffee in the morning? Then actually savour that moment. Is it the warmth of the sun on a cold winter day? Then stop, close your eyes and take a deep breath. Is it waking up a bit early so the house is quiet just for you? Then set that alarm and do it. Find that little ounce of joy and insert it into every day during the holiday break.
Trust us that if there is any important news to share, we will email and also alert you via text message to check your email, so you don’t miss out on any details. But really, my holiday wish for all of you, is that you don’t hear from me!
May slow mornings in pjs, love, laughter, good food and shared memories fill your homes over the Winter Break. Happy Holidays!
Tina Sartori, Executive Director
Screening & recording starting Jan. 3 – Elementary and JH included
For the first 2 weeks after we return, we will require ALL families to screen and record results as we did in September. Links can be found below or on the MA Parent Portal under Resources: COVID: September 2021 Return to school information: https://montessori.myschoolapp.com/app/parent#resourceboarddetail/25260
Please bookmark these links to use starting Monday, January 3, 2022. We will also restart daily text reminders for that two-week period.
Toddler & Casa Google Forms for at-home screening
Waterloo Toddler 1 Screening Google Form
Waterloo Toddler 2 Screening Google Form
Westmount Toddler Screening Google Form
Casa Screening Links
Casa 1 Screening Google Form
Casa 2 Screening Google Form
Casa 3 Screening Google Form
Casa 4 Screening Google Form
Westmount Casa 5 Screening Google Form
Waterloo Casa 6 Screening Google Form
Elementary & Junior High Google Forms for at-home screening
Lower El 1 Screening Google Form – Andressa and Julie
Lower El 2 Screening Google Form – Shawna and Cindy
Lower El 3 Screening Google Form – Lindsey and Sarah
Junior High Screening Google Form
Reminder: Elementary Hot Lunch forms and payments due Friday
Elementary hot lunch forms and payments are due this Friday, December 17. Please place your orders online: https://mahotlunch.campbrainregistration.com/. Payments can be made by cash, cheque, Visa, MasterCard, Amex or Apple Pay.
Extended Hours Registration for January
If you need your child/ren in Early/Extended Hours for the month of January, please register them online by visiting: https://montessoriacademy.campbrainregistration.com/.
Sibling Applications due January 14
Applications to MA for siblings of current students are due by Friday, January 14 for the 2022-2023 School Year. We continue to receive a high volume of applications for our Toddler and Casa programs, and would like to provide priority to our current MA families before new admissions are offered in March.
If you would like to submit an application for a child in your family, please complete the Online Application by the deadline. Offers of Admission for siblings of current students will be provided shortly after re-enrolment closes in February. Please contact Victoria with any questions: firstname.lastname@example.org or 519-433-9121 ext. 211.
Applications for Financial Support due January 4
Applications for Financial Support are due on Tuesday, January 4, 2022, following the winter break. Full details on how to apply, along with a Financial Support FAQ can be found through the MA Parent Portal under the “Resources” section. Or through our website: https://montessori.on.ca/admissions/financial-support/
What’s for Dinner? Pick-up is tonight
Please see your email from Tonya that you should have received earlier this week for your pick-up time and COVID precautions.
Donations for 2021 Tax Year
If you wish to make a donation for the 2021 tax year, cash or cheques must be received at the school by this Thursday, December 16. Online donations can be made up until December 31 to qualify for a 2021 tax receipt. Donate today through this link: https://montessori.on.ca/get-involved/ways-to-give/
The Fundraising Campaign lasts all school year! The letter is sent out in November for those who wish to maximize their donations for the 2021 tax year. We are fundraising and collecting donations for the Elementary Library until the end of the school year – June 2022.
We love our bookworms!
Upper El students Solana and Sebastian have made generous donations of their own money in support of our Library fundraising! This morning, they dropped off their donations and were celebrated by our librarian, Rob! They included their bookworms with a message each about why they donated:
“I chose to donate to the library because the library is my favourite place at school and because of all the great books there.”
“I am donating to the library because the library is the place where I can go to read and I think the library is the best part of the school.”
Thank you, Sebastian and Solana!
If you have made a donation already and misplaced the colouring page, please contact Tonya at email@example.com, we will be happy to send you another one.
MA Sports! Volleyball wrapup
Congratulations to the Boys’ and Girls’ Senior volleyball teams for wrapping up their seasons with a win each. It’s been a long time since we had any competitive sports for our Junior High students, and this year we saw the return of volleyball.
This season saw some amazing progression, as it has been almost two years since our players had participated in any volleyball. The teams practised together at the gym and played their games with a small bubble and teams from London’s Catholic schools.
Volleyball through the years at Montessori
Students in Casa are taught the very basics of volleyball while using a balloon — trying to keep it up in the air, and then hit it over the net. Learning how to bump, volley and serve begins in Year 1 with beach balls and progresses through the grades with various adaptive balls that enable success. In “normal” times, students in Upper Elementary compete in a volleyball intramural and Junior High students participate on the competitive volleyball team, taking part in a full season of games and tournaments.
Photos from the week
Casa 1 Christmas ornaments
It’s beginning to SMELL a lot like Christmas! This month, Casa 1 has been learning about various holiday celebrations. Earlier this week, the students “spiced things up” by making homemade cinnamon dough ornaments!
Kwanzaa in Casa 3
Harambee! Casa 3 students have been learning all about Kwanzaa this week. They have been busy painting beautiful Kinaras and Unity Cups. We love learning about different cultural holidays during the month of December!
Storytime in Lower El
Year 6 students wrote their own storybook about holidays around the world and read them to the Lower El students.
A little holiday ditty for you!
The Year 5 students from UE2 have worked hard on putting together this holiday song… And considering the students have gone so long without performing as a group (thanks for nothing, COVID), we think it’s a great performance. Enjoy! https://vimeo.com/655460666/1d14f5de9e