Montessori Buzz – June 2, 2020
A message from Tina Sartori, Executive Director
Dear MA Families,
The love and joy that was spread through our community on Friday was phenomenal! The visits were a fantastic highlight from the last 10 weeks. The pictures that were shared on our social media pages allowed so many to follow the ribbon of happiness that was woven through our city. I am so grateful for the commitment and efforts of our staff that allowed the MA Curbside Visits to happen.
We were very fortunate to experience these moments on Friday. However, I want to acknowledge the unrest and extreme sadness that has overcome many in North America over the last week with regards to racism. The comment that I have seen over the last several days that has resonated with me the most is; “I understand, I will never understand, however I stand.”
One of the core elements of Montessori pedagogy is peace education and our curriculum has an entire section, through all levels devoted to grace, courtesy and virtues; what it means and how to be a part of a kind, respectful and inclusive classroom. My hope for our community and beyond is that we have the courage to stand, have the uncomfortable conversations, the openness to educate ourselves and rise to the level of humanity we need to meet Rosa Parks’ famous quote, “There is only one race, the human race.”
If you find yourself trying to navigate these challenging conversations about white privilege, race and racism with your children, there are some resources below to get you started. We also follow the work of the National Centre for Montessori in the Public Sector, that focuses on inclusion in Montessori and supports us to elevate our practice of anti-racist, anti-bias teaching. There is more work to do; we invite you to join us and do this very important work together.
National Center for Montessori in the Public Sector Resources (US based)
One of the simplest things you can do is to allow Britt Hawthorne into your Instagram feed! Britt is a Montessori-trained guide, a mom, and one of the moderators of the Montessori Teachers Facebook group. She is also a nationally recognized anti-bias teacher-educator who works with schools around the country. She shows up daily on Instagram with advice, inspiration, and strategies for teachers and parents who want to improve.
- Watch this video: “Should I talk to my five year old about George Floyd?” and more in her Instagram stories.
More resources for talking about race
- 10 Tips for teaching and talking to kids about racism: https://www.embracerace.org/resources/teaching-and-talking-to-kids
- Embracerace.org’s series of webinars:
- Today’s Parent – Kids’ books that talk about racism: https://www.todaysparent.com/family/books/kids-books-that-talk-about-racism/?fbclid=IwAR0mgO-gRft637nfs4H_N1DGIpcUNfXzTf0XkWGoaTGyjevZmU4gIWpIEqw
- WBUR’s On Point – How to talk to your kids about racism and police violence: https://www.wbur.org/onpoint/2020/06/02/teach-talk-children-racism-violence-protests-race
- Parents Canada – How to teach racial acceptance: https://www.parentscanada.com/family-life/how-to-teach-racial-acceptance/
- Great Big Story – How you can be an Ally to the Black Lives Matter movement: https://www.greatbigstory.com/guides/how-to-become-a-better-black-lives-matter-ally
Our Virtual ARTexpo 2020 kicks off on Friday!
Mark your schedules for this Friday, and plan to grab a refreshment and gather the family around the screen for our first ever (and hopefully our last) virtual ARTexpo. Watch for an email on Friday with details on how to enter our Virtual ARTexpo exhibition!
MAofLondonAtHome – Curbside Visits!
Thank you to the parents and teachers who shared, tagged and emailed photos so we could share with our community. What a joyous experience!
- Here is an online photo album of some photos from the daylong visits: https://montessori.myschoolapp.com/app/detail/album/photo/1069765
- Photos are also available on our Instagram page and in our IG stories – Curbside Visits: https://www.instagram.com/s/aGlnaGxpZ2h0OjE3ODk3NjU3OTk4NTAwNzIz?igshid=1monsot3tdfga&story_media_id=2318461427760714707
“Is Montessori Worth It” – by Montessori Education
This hourlong video is worth the time. Montessorian Jesse McCarthy talks about the Elementary program in traditional Montessori school versus “traditional” Elementary schools.