Welcome to spring! It’s wonderful to see all of the changes are happening outside right now. During this time of change outside, we notice change inside the classroom as well. The works that the children are choosing are more challenging. It’s great to hear the children say “I did it!”, when they complete a challenging work. You can see the children’s confidence grow with each new accomplishment.
We have caterpillars in the classroom this month, so we have been reading “The Very Hungry Caterpillar” this month and acting out the book with felt pieces that match the book and new matching plastic fruit pieces that I bought at the Conference. We’ve been watching our little hairy caterpillars crawl eat and grow longer. Last week we noticed that most of them were hanging upside down in their habitat, which meant they were getting ready to make their chrysalis. We talked about what happens to the caterpillars while they are inside their cozy chrysalis and how they will come out looking like butterflies. Once the butterflies wings are dry, we’ll take their habitat out to the garden and let them fly free.
This month we’ve been talking about and playing with birds. We have bird puppets, bird matching cards. We have a bird book that shows robins hatching from an egg, being fed by their parents until they are ready to fly away. The book sits with two plush robins in a plush-lined nest. We have started to sing: “Blue bird, blue bird, in my window,” then repeat the chorus to include red and yellow birds while using plush birds replicas who make the actual bird’s song when you press their stomach. The children’s faces light up as they listen to the song each bird sings. After singing the blue bird song at circle time, the children like to pretend they are baby birds sitting in their nest, being fed worms and ice cream – their food choices!
Next month we will continue to learn about birds. We’ll also talk much more about insects that birds find so yummy. We will also learn more about the flowers that are blooming and and the plants that are growing up all around us.
Before I go, I want to highlight a couple of the many workshops I attended at the American Montessori Society’s annual conference. I observed in several classrooms at Franklin Montessori School in Maryland, where I got ideas on new ways to use materials for our shelves. In the workshop, “Bringing Montessori into the home,” the speaker had ideas on how to build good relationships between parents and teachers. “Supporting toddlers during transitions” and “Looking and listening in toddler environments”, reminded me to spend lots of time observing the children and to be sure I step back and let them do what they can do. Carefully observing children can help determine materials that are put out in the classroom.
The SMS Tag Sale Saturday, April 6 at 8 am at Margaret and Barry Johnson’s house 1230 Yorkshire Rd. Are you able to volunteer? Sign up here. Please invite others who would be interested in clothes and items for younger children.
The Five Love Languages with author Dr. Gary Chapman @7pm April 24 in Home Moravian Church Sanctuary. This event is co-sponsored by Salem Montessori School and the Shaffner Fund of Home Moravian Church and is free and open to the public.