JM Blog

Alphabet Sound Extensions

Alphabet Sound Extensions

If your looking for an idea to reinforce letter sounds, a fun way can be through books and art, especially for the younger child. The book set by Jane Belk called, My First Steps to Reading is a great resource.

I appreciate her use of the letter sound highlighted in each book as well as her use of lower case letters. If you decide to use them, keep in mind that they are fictional books, and a reminder of this will need to be brought out to the children in a Montessori classroom. After reading a book I would gather the sandpaper letter, object box, and sound book to discuss with the children. An art activity would follow with something from the story that started with that letter sound. I am including some picture ideas below to give you an idea of how I combined the books with art.

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Having Fun With Volcanoes

Having Fun With Volcanoes

A fun summer project and experiment can be learning about volcanoes.  If the school I worked at had a large sand area we would make our volcanoes outside. If there wasn’t a sandbox we would make a volcano inside the classroom using a tub full of sand.  Either way, it is an exciting experiment children always enjoy.

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Starting the new school year – Some Thoughts

Take Note!

Preparation is always the key to staying ahead of the curriculum. Below I share some thoughts on how that goes for me, the things I think about, and how I organize the room and materials. Remember, I make a lot of my materials for works, so I have to stay organized. I have a lot that I can keep from year to year, but if you’re just starting out, you’ll have a lot of prep to do! Don’t stress, just do what you can.

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Book on the Shelf

Book on the Shelf

I wanted to share some of what I call, “Books on the Shelf.” As I look at the books to be used in the classroom to enhance a lesson, I try to think how this can be made into a book with props to be available as work choice for the children.  Books with props help children to discover the joy of literature and deepen the understanding of the story. They are fun to put together and the children really enjoy them. I wanted to share some of the one’s I put together over the years.

 

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Butterfly Fun

Butterfly Fun

I have been thinking about some of the things I enjoy doing with the children each school year.

One of them are lessons on insects, with butterflies being a favorite. I order caterpillars each year and we learn about butterflies. I usually order from Insectlore.com. Five caterpillars come in the mail and over the many years I’ve done this it has always proved to be successful. I am going to share some photos from the past, since as it happened this school year due to the virus, this is a lesson we did not get to share in.

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Gardening Lessons for Children

Gardening Lessons for Children

I have decided to share with you some gardening ideas from the past that you can perhaps use with children. Children are naturally drawn to plants and gardens. Maria Montessori said, “There must be provision for the child to have contact with nature, to understand and appreciate the order, the harmony and the beauty in nature… so that the child may better understand and participate in the marvelous things which civilization creates.”

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Started Adding Video to Online Curriculum

So, this past week was a milestone for me, because I finally started to think about how videos can help with teaching, especially if you are now transitioning to online classes. Covid-19 may have started us having to learn about how to teach online, but I was part of a Zoom conference call last week where a San Francisco school is really taking it to another level! I was really impressed by this school, they really worked together, cared for one another, and were even willing to help veteran teachers like me learn more about online teaching – video being a huge part.

So here was a video I quickly put together (well, my husband did the editing) which I added to the Cultural Curriculum Week 31 Day 2. Check it out…

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JustMontessori Introduction Video

This was the first video my husband created for JustMontessori years ago. It was always such a peaceful video for me… something about the growth of the flower and a child’s mind growing resonated with me. Plus, I always liked the metaphor for how my Cultural Curriculum goal was to grow, “…the absorbent mind” in my children. It’s so true, plant the Montessori methods, water them with encouragement, and watch as their little minds grow!

I hope you enjoy it!

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