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Shifting from “Stuff” to the Spirit of the Season

By Montessori in Action, Montessori Learning, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
All too often the holiday season becomes about “stuff”–presents, decorations, more presents. How do we wean our children away from their focus on getting gifts and instead shift attention to the spirit of togetherness, generosity, peace, and goodwill? It can be helpful to hold a family meeting and talk about everyone’s feelings about the holidays. We can ask our children about what, besides the gifts, they really like about the holidays.…
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Art for Self-Expression

By Montessori in Action, Montessori Learning No Comments
Numerous theories and lots of research expound upon the importance of artistic expression. For young children and adolescents, art is an especially crucial form of personal expression. As such, children need to experience their own process rather than to produce a piece that someone else wants.  In Montessori, we also have sensitivity to different expressive needs throughout different stages of development.  Process vs. Product For young children, the process of making…
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A Supportive Summer

By Montessori in Action, Montessori Learning No Comments
The summer months can sometimes feel like a long stretch, especially when we are trying to figure out how to keep our children engaged, or at least entertained. However, if we think about the big picture of what children really need, it can be easier to think about activities that will satisfy those needs and support natural development. What do our children really need? When Dr. Maria Montessori first began working…
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Memory, Learning, and Montessori

By Montessori in Action, Montessori Learning No Comments
Memory is such a critical component of learning. We perhaps take this for granted without fully understanding how memory works and how to support our children in the process of creating and retrieving memories.  What is memory?  Memory is essential to being human. Our brains have evolved to remember what is most meaningful. That being said, we also tend to forget things! Interestingly enough, not remembering is often just a case…
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Materials Spotlight: The Bead Chain Cabinet

By Montessori in Action, Montessori Learning, The Prepared Environment No Comments
Visit any Montessori environments and you’ll immediately notice a stunning display of colorful glass beads hanging in an open cabinet. Children (and adults!) are drawn to the order and elegance of the bead chains. Beyond their initial aesthetic appeal, the bead chain material offers an amazing array of intellectual opportunities for young children to those in their primary years.Colour-coding   One of the brilliant aspects of the Montessori mathematics materials is…
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Family-School Partnership

By FMS Values, Montessori in Action, Montessori Learning No Comments
Our children really thrive when home and school environments work cooperatively, communicate well, and share similar educational values and expectations. When families devote sincere effort to learning about Montessori principles and how to reinforce these at home, there are positive effects. We want to partner with you in support of your child! What does a home-school partnership look like in action?   In order to reinforce and extend your child’s experience at…
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In Honour of Grandparents’ & Special Friends’ Day

By Emotional Wellbeing, FMS Values, Montessori in Action No Comments
Aleta Ledendecker was a Montessori teacher for nearly 40 years. She started her own Montessori school and taught early childhood through adolescents. Aleta was also a Montessori teacher trainer. She is now retired and has three grandchildren. In honour of Grandparents' and Special Friends’ Day Aleta shared some thoughts about Montessori and grandparenting.  As a former Montessori teacher, how has Montessori shaped the way you grandparent?  A new world of love…
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Children and the News

By Emotional Wellbeing, Parenting, Talking with children No Comments
It seems like this is as good a time as any to talk about how our children interact with the news. The news simply wasn’t designed with children in mind, and although it is certainly an important part of our lives, we have to remember how it may affect our kids. We hope this guide will give you some helpful tips. Potential Problems Before we jump into the problems, we would…
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Buran – Our New Learning Environment

By Montessori in Action, The Prepared Environment No Comments
It was exciting to see the children's faces as they stepped into their new Buran environment on Tuesday morning. Buran, means Stringybark in Wannangini (Guringal) language. Uncle Neil, a local Elder advised us on all the naming of our environments.Our new children’s House has been part of our strategic plan to refresh and redevelop our facilities.  The brief began with the words from Maria Montessori: ‘The child should live in…
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Making Amends

By FMS Values, Montessori Basics, Montessori Philosophy No Comments
Our children make mistakes. We can help them learn how to make amends. Help children shift from throw-away apologies to repairing the wrong-doing.Mistakes are a part of life. We all make them. Hopefully, we even learn from them! Intellectually we probably understand that mistakes are part of our children’s process of learning and growing. Yet as parents and caregivers, it can be hard to know how to handle situations when…
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