Explorations of Elementary – December 2015
After Thanksgiving break students were excited to get back to work. Several of our older elementary students began researching Ancient Rome and Greece. They set their own deadlines and dove into their work. They drew maps of the empires, clothing, and made lists of all the famous gods and goddesses. It was amazing to watch them wonder through history exploring the things that stood out the them and were the most interesting in their minds. I was even more impressed with their work ethic throughout the research. Nothing was assigned, but every topic was covered and they all worked together to complete their work. I am excited to hear their presentation when we return from break.
Other students were looking into their personal family history by creating a timeline of the family members living in their houses. They also explored the Story of Numbers and Story of Writing. These are two of the Montessori Great Lessons discussed in elementary each year. We talk about how writing and numbers came to be and how they have changed over time to better serve the needs of humans as we learn and grow. We look at visual timelines, charts, and examples of various styles of writing and numbers. The kids love to see how other people used to write and how it is similar or different from how they write today.
Of course, with Christmas approaching we spent time preparing for our annual Christmas Show. This year the students voted to perform the play, The Nutcracker. Parts were chosen and everyone worked diligently to learn their lines. We read several versions of the book, watched the Disney version of the story, and some students even went to see the ballet with their families.
I was very impressed with how well each student learned their part, memorized their lines, and helped each other perform well. I think their favorite part was creating all of the props. The students designed what we needed based upon the script, and went to work!
They cut out a fireplace, mantle, Christmas tree, and made a beautiful candy gate. They added flair with colorful painting and three-dimensional decorations. Our play was a wonderful success. I was so proud of the students!
To kick off our break students came to school in their pajamas (so did the teachers) and had a blast playing games and watching Christmas movies. This is such a fun day for everyone! The highlight was joining Ms. Courtney’s class to play Pie in the Face.
I hope everyone had a wonderful Christmas and a Happy New Year!