Montessori Buzz – May 26, 2020
Message from Tina Sartori, Executive Director
Dear MA Families,
This week my schedule has finally allowed me to jump into Zoom classes! I can’t tell you what a wonderful experience it has been for me to see and hear your children again. My visits will continue over the coming days until I have been to each class. This moment of connection with your children, has filled me with so much hope, happiness and inspiration. The endless smiles on my screen made my heart burst and also tear up with gratitude for this community.
It’s been decided that MA’s last day of school will be June 19, from the comfort and well-being of your homes. We will not be returning to our physical buildings to end the school year; this decision is supported by the MA Board of Governors. On Friday, we received a communication from the Middlesex-London Health Unit (MLHU) indicating independent schools will not be opening while the province is in Stage One, which is likely to continue into June. Furthermore, when the province moves into Stage Two, it will only be licensed programs that can begin to open. With this timeline, the only potential of a program to open would be our Toddler summer camp, as it is licensed and runs under CCEYA regulations.
Camp Discovery for 4 to 6 year olds and our MA Sports Camp also have the potential to run when we move into Stage Two. Our ability to run these camp programs will come through a directive from the City of London and guidelines provided by the MLHU. Families who have registered for these programs, will receive an email to confirm your child’s attendance, if we get the green light to move ahead and we can meet all the guidelines that are provided.
We recognize the news about not returning to our “second homes” at school in June comes with many emotions, and the need to feel connected could be higher than ever for your children. For this reason, Friday, May 29, will be filled with MA Curbside Visits! All Zoom classes will be cancelled on Friday and instead your child will receive a physically distanced curb-side visit from one or more of their classroom teachers. Watch for more details in a followup email from your child’s teachers regarding the schedule for these visits.
Towards the end of June, we will also have a process and schedule in place for families to collect any items that are at the school, as well as for families to return any items to the school, such as team uniforms or instruments. You will be hearing more details from your child’s teacher when we are ready to implement the pickup process for each class.
Enjoy your visits on Friday – I hope they fill your hearts with joy.
Tina Sartori, Executive Director
Message from Kristen Crouse, Academic Director
I feel like my notes recently talk about ‘traditions’; things that we find comfort in and enjoyment in doing year after year. Due to our school being closed, there are many traditions we still want our students to partake in. The one tradition in the school that is always one that the students (and I bet parents) enjoy, is “Phasing In”. Phasing In occurs each June because we realize the importance of having the students connect with their new teachers prior to school starting in the fall. This June, however, Phasing In will have a different look. We will outline how this will occur for students moving into a new level in the Class Placement Letters that will be mailed home this week. Basically there are two parts to it:
- First each family will have the opportunity to ‘meet’ their child’s new teachers through a zoom call the week of June 8.
- The second part takes place in August, the week before school begins. During this time, the children will spend some time in their new classrooms with their teachers. The amount of time spent in the classroom will vary depending on the age level. We know moving into a new classroom is exciting, yet also a time of trepidation for many, therefore we hope these two events will help with the transition.
Another tradition is the Year-End Celebration, which we hold at Banting Secondary School. This is when we come together and celebrate the success of those students completing the last year of their level. At this celebration students receive their Certificate of Promotion. Even though we will not be having this event at Banting, these students will still be recognized for the completion of their level through a Zoom meeting with the teachers. In the June 16 afternoon Zoom sessions, homeroom teachers will recognize the Moving Up of the Senior Casas, Year 3 students and Year 6 students. We encourage parents to join their child in this session; and of course all of their classmates are invited too! We will be sure each student receives their Certificate of Promotion and their Yearbook in June. Keep posted on this.
Graduation for the Year 8 students will still happen on June 18, however the celebration will look different than in the past. Year 8 students and parents will receive an email tomorrow, Wednesday, May 27, outlining the details.
Here’s to continuing our school traditions… just with a new look! I wish everyone a wonderful week ahead!
All the best,
Kristen Crouse, Academic Director
Zoom Upgrade required
We received the following message from Zoom about a new version of the app/platform: Important Notice: Please begin updating all your clients to Zoom 5.0. After May 30, 2020, all Zoom clients on older versions will receive a forced upgrade when trying to join meetings as GCM Encryption will be fully enabled across the Zoom platform. Click here for more information on the changes and to update your Zoom application.
Junior High: Gifts Project
When we launched Jr. High online after March break, we presented the students with a mission: to become Canada’s next youth change-maker. This mission was called “The Gifts Project” – watch the video teaser here if you need to jog your memory: https://vimeo.com/401992577/359bff1bf3 . Little did we know just how creative, meaningful, and innovative these projects would turn out to be! Last week the projects wrapped up with every student presenting to their peers and teachers over Zoom and it was truly inspiring to see what everyone came up with. For many of the students, this went well beyond a school project and turned into a real-life mission to begin to develop their idea into something real.
Some of our students reached out and talked to experts from all across Canada, while others put their hands to work building prototypes. If you are searching for a bit of inspiration these days, read through a quick summary of all of the students ideas that stemmed from The Gifts Project here: What will you choose to give – Gifts Project Summary FINAL.pdf
The future of our world belongs to these young creative minds and this project has left us all with a feeling of hope.
Casa 1 Reptilian snacks!
We continue to marvel at our Casa 1 families’ creativity! We concluded this week’s study with Reptilian inspired snacks! Snakes and turtles…OH MY!
Upper El’s Wacky Wednesday
In Upper Elementary, the students were invited to dress as their favourite characters for Wacky Wednesday. We had visits from Harry Potter, a chimney sweep from Mary Poppins and a sheep farmer with his beloved pig, Babe! So much fun!!
Upper El experiment!
UE student Cameron does a great job explaining the Egg Drop Experiment – this week’s Upper Elementary STEM challenge! Take a look: https://www.instagram.com/p/CAdH4e6nkS0/
Elementary courtyard garden update
Lisa E. stopped by the school over the weekend to clean up the Bird, Bee, Butterfly Garden … and look what she found in the adjacent raised beds!!
These are special tulips honouring Veterans that she and the students planted around Remembrance Day. She says she’d forgotten we planted them! What a beautiful surprise to honour the women and men who’ve served our country.
Montessori Minute activities
Power of WIND!
Can you control the power of air and wind? In these 3 experiments you can! Try them all and see how powerful you are!!
Ages 2-7 years
Experimenting with Light
Young scientists look at everything around them and wonder: what can I do with that? how does it work? These experiments help children explore how light can be controlled and disbursed.
Ages: 4-12 years