Hello Lyonsgate Montessori Families,

Welcome back to school. We hope everyone had a wonderful holiday.

The new term always means a few changes, and we have had some children from the Toddler level reach the point where they are ready for Casa and have made the big move. The newly opened space has allowed us to welcome a few new children into the Toddler environment; be sure to read the Toddler update to hear about how amazing the older Toddler children have been. We have also had a new student join us at our Elementary campus.

New children in the classrooms mean updated Parent Contact Lists will be coming your way via email. Remember, the Parent Contact Lists are for Lyonsgate families to use to arrange playdates, carpools, send out invitations, etc. Please do not use or share other parents’ email addresses or phone numbers for solicitation or other commercial purposes.

Here’s to a great winter term. Stay warm, smile more, make someone’s day, and enjoy your first Lyonsgate update of 2019.

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This Week:

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Happy New Year! It is wonderful to have the children back in the classroom. It was especially great to hear about their winter break.

We have three new children who are adjusting to their new environment and it’s great to see the older children’s reaction. They are constantly giving them hugs and saying “it’s okay,” and they often give them reminders that they will be seeing their moms and dads soon. It’s great to see their concern in action. Instead of leaving it at them saying this child is crying, we acknowledge what they’ve observed and ask “what can we do about it?” prompting them to act on their concerns.


  • Between 8:25-8:45, Mlle. Noordam is in the hall to assist with drop off. Parents are encouraged to say a quick goodbye and Mlle. Noordam will help in preparing them for the classroom. When parents linger, it makes the child even more upset, and the toddlers also feel overwhelmed in their space by multiple adults and the extra children in the cloak room area. If the child feels anxiety coming from mom and dad during drop off they will also be anxious, making drop off difficult for all parties involved. A calm, quick, reassuring, and consistent drop off routine is the best way to help your child adjust to school.
  • Parent Communication Book — please use the book to provide any information that we need to know. With Mlle. Noordam helping children through that transition, her focus is on the children to ensure that their needs are met at the moment.
  • Upon pickup, we encourage parents to wait at the gate and one of the teachers will guide your child to you.
  • Finally, a reminder that Montessori encourages independence in even our youngest students. At the Toddler level, dressing oneself is one of the main roads to developing independence, and the focus is on successes rather than mistakes such as shoes on the wrong feet or mis-aligned buttons

Thank you for understanding, and for helping your child, and their classmates, to realize the full benefits of Montessori.

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Casa South: The children were enthusiastic to be back and went straight to work — lots of reading and writing each others names, and stories about the break.

A few new activiites have been introduced to the classroom that the children are excited to be shown. (“What’s new in your class?” might be a good way into discussions about school).

Lots of bread was made this first week back, as well as lots of watercolour paintings — great home/weekend activites too.

We also had some observers in the classroom this week and it was lovely to see the way the children confidently introduced themselves.

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Casa North: Welcome back and Happy 2019, Casa North families!

I hope you had a restful, fun break. The children are right back into the swing of things in Casa North. The first week back can be tearful for a few, but they quickly remember what a great place their Montessori environment is. I’ve been noticing some wonderful, big changes in the young ones who just came to Casa in September — they are flourishing, and it’s lovely to see. Some of the older students are diving into more advanced language materials, which is an exciting shift for them as well.

We look forward to seeing you at our upcoming parent education evening — make sure you check your school calendar for this term, as we also have another Show and Share at the end of the month (which is always a favourite!).

Thank you for your continued support, and we look forward to a wonderful term.

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Happy New Year! The Elementary class is bursting with energy and new pursuits as students eagerly returned to their work this week.

We very happily returned to the newly renovated Locke Street Library this first week back to find some new fiction to read, and many students have jumped into research for this term’s projects, which they will be presenting to at the beginning of March.

Lyonsgate Elementary students have already had some fun expanding their music knowledge and making some noise by exploring the distance between tones, matching their voices to bell tones, and learning the Curwen hand signs for do, re, and mi.

Most importantly, we have welcomed a new friend, Laila, into our community, and we are thrilled to have another student with whom to work, play, get to know, and learn from.

Elementary Parents: If you haven’t already done so, please complete the online waiver for Gravity Climbing Gym by Tuesday, Jan. 15. We will be rock climbing at Gravity next Wednesday, Jan. 16, and the following, Jan. 23. These are morning outings and we will be leaving the school at 9:30. Please help children remember to wear their red Lyonsgate shirts, and clothing that they can climb/move in; students will also need their water bottles for climbing.

Also to note for parents, Locke St. is undergoing a complete reconstruction this year. There are 3 stages preliminary work being completed that will result in partial and full road closures on Locke from now until sometime in March. Once this preliminary work is completed, full reconstruction of Locke St. is scheduled to start in the spring. Please be aware that it may be difficult to access Lyonsgate at times throughout the roadwork project. Remember, children can be dropped off or picked up at the Primary campus on Aberdeen Ave. Elementary students leave Aberdeen at 8:40 sharp each morning, and return for 3:30.

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Next Week(s):

Parent Education Evening:

The winter term Parent Education Evening will take place on Thursday, Jan. 24, at the Lyonsgate Primary campus on Aberdeen Ave., from 4:00-5:00 p.m, in the synagogue’s Sanctuary (where the Holiday Concert was). Please click here to register for childcare (pizza will be available for registered children).

This evening will introduce you to the different “Planes of Development,” as Maria Montessori called them. Montessori environments are prepared to meet the developmental needs of children at different ages and stages of development.

We will discuss each “Plane of Development” and highlight the characteristics of children at each stage. You will learn how Lyonsgate’s prepared Montessori environments meet children’s developmental needs, and understand the relations between the different levels as your children progress from Toddler to Casa to Elementary.

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