Upper West This Week: April 28 – May 2, 2014

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All that Montessori categorization and order work, that started in Casa, pays off as the Upper West kids help organize our overflowing lost and found. Missing anything?

Upper West prides itself on being a valuable and contributing part of the DVMS community. Two of our girls are volunteering to help the Lower Elementary kids at their horseback riding activity this month, and above we are helping Skye and Janice organize the lost and found for our reclamation day. Learning to be a part of a community is a very important part of Montessori. We strive to educate the whole child, and learning responsibility and social relations is an essential part of that.

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Children’s creativity is often astounding. The beginnings of one cool looking periodic table.

Montessori also seeks to find a balance between traditional academics and creativity. We have learned about the periodic table recently, and are now creating our own periodic tables (as we mentioned previously). The combination of academics and creativity you see above is not only a great example of engaged, effective learning, it is also inspiring to us as adults to try to rediscover a bit of our own creative sides.

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Kathleen working with a student and her grandparent on the Decimal Board.

The best part of this week, though, was hosting the grandparents. The learning was multi-generational, as the students had the chance to share their learning. The student above is continuing to develop her mathematical skills and knowledge, her grandmother is learning about what and how her grand-daughter learns,  and Kathleen is learning more about the children in her class through the glimpses into their relationships with their families.

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Introducing grandma to the classroom gecko.

One of the more enjoyable moments of Grandparents’ Day was giving the grandparents the chance to meet our classroom pets — Miko and Squirt, the gecko lizards. We had a bit of a panic this week when one of them went missing for a few days. We thought he had escaped his terrarium, but it turns out he just buried himself deep in the woodchips for what we guess was a little gecko vacation. He’s back now and also had a wonderful day on Friday.

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