Hello Lyonsgate Montessori Families,

Thank you all for making the time come in and meet with your children’s Montessori guides last week, and for taking the time to observe in the Montessori environments throughout the month.

We are back to regular updates from your children’s guides this week with notes about what’s new and exciting in the classrooms, reminders and requests, and what Montessori materials and activities are in heavy rotation.

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This Week:

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The toddlers have been learning their last names — they’ve even started introducing themselves by their first and last name! The children have also begun to recognize their written names — in the shoe compartments, extra clothing bins, and their name tags (used for setting up for lunch).

With the winter concert approaching, we have been hearing a lot of humming and buzzing. The children have been practicing every day and are excited to perform!

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Casa South: Casa South has some new food prep materials — slicing an egg and juicing an orange. In the new year, we will be seeking donations of eggs and oranges every two weeks for these new classroom activities. Food preparation, either these specific activities or other Montessori jobs, such as helping to prepare snack or lunch, is a key to unlocking independence for children. They are also a way for children to develop positive relationships with food by preparing it for themselves, helping themselves at lunch, and enjoying the (sometimes literal) fruits of their labour. We are also starting to make cinnamon raisin bread to make the classroom smell more festive.

Helping with food preparation and serving, and cleaning up, are also great activities to include children in at home.

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Casa North: Firstly, I want to thank everyone for taking the time to connect with me to discuss your children and their accomplishments. Parent teacher conferences are always so nice because they allow me to reflect on each child’s progress as an individual as well as the community as a whole. I’m grateful to spend my days with your children, and I thank you for your continued support of the Montessori program.

One of the things that I love about the Casa environment is the children’s eagerness to practice grace and courtesy. This week, on one particular day, I invited three children to do some “grace and courtesy skits.” We acted out Greeting and Introducing, Picking Up What Someone Dropped, and Inviting Someone In. In each instance, I would demonstrate how to move, what to say, and how to say it. As this presentation progressed, other children gradually joined and were included seamlessly. In the Montessori Casa environment, we want respect, kindness, and courtesy to be imbued in everything we do, but we also set time aside to practice these things as their own focused presentations. The children absolutely love getting to act out these skits, and I love watching them carry these values forward in the classroom all the time.

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This week, our focus in Elementary has shifted to community outreach. This year, we are working to help Hamilton Out Of The Cold . Please read the following message from our Elementary students:

Dear Parents,

Lyonsgate Montessori Elementary is having a fundraiser for Hamilton Out of the Cold. Out of the Cold helps homeless and nearly homeless. We are making decorations and art to sell. You can buy decorations and art or donate hot drink mix (preferably tea), toothbrushes, and toothpaste. There will be donation boxes on the front porch of the Elementary building and in the entrance to the Primary campus each day from Tuesday, Dec. 11, until Friday, Dec. 14. Our sale will be at both Lyonsgate campuses on Tuesday, Dec. 18, at the end of the school day.

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Next Week:

Next week is the second-last week of the first term, and the last full week of school.

The Winter Concert will take place on Thursday, Dec. 20. Parents are welcome to arrive starting at 2:00 p.m. in order to chat and be seated for the concert to start at 2:30. We anticipate the concert running until approximately 3:30, after which we will depart for the winter break.

Please Note: there is no after or extended care on Thursday, Dec. 20, after the concert.

We return to school on Monday, January 7, 2019.

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