V olume 4, Issue 1 | September 2017
Calendar Highlights

Here are some upcoming important dates. 
  • October 9th - No School for Columbus Day
  • October 13th - Social Night, 7-9pm, 
  • October 16th - Picture Day Retakes
  • October 17th - Primary Collaboration Night
  • October 19th - Toddler/Elementary Collaboration Night
  • October 26-27th - Half Day for Parent Conferences. Aftercare IS provided
  • October 31st - Elementary Historical Presentations - 2:00pm
Click Here for our Google Calendar.
Message from Matt Simberg, M.Ed.
 
Dear Parents,

Everyone seems to have settled into the new school year as September has come to an end. MSOE had its Back to School Picnic, which went very well. Mayor Tom Brennan even came out to help with the Grand Opening of The Little Free Library. Our initial Collaboration Night/Back to School Night went very well also. Thank you to all the families who attended.

We have had several families tour and inquire about all three of our programs during the month of September, which means that we are nearing capacity for all of our programs. We would like to welcome Stephen Wysock who has joined us this week in Elementary. We now have a waiting list for Elementary. We would also like to welcome Morgan Gaskins (Tucker's sister) to Toddler. We also have several toddler tours coming up, which means that if one more student enrolls, we will also have a waiting list for Toddler. Our Primary program is filling up fast as well. There are at least two prospective Primary students who may be joining us. 

S.T.E.M. has successfully kicked off, as well as drama. Students from MSOE and from the community are participating in those programs. Fencing has been going very well for the students who have begun participating in that on Wednesdays. Mr. Robert has started piano lessons again as well. There is still room in our after school programs, so please help us spread the word. We are also looking for additional staff to assist in our programs.

With the start of another really good school year, MSOE is looking forward to the rest of the school year with all of you as we continue to grow. We are continuing to improve our communications through the use of Remind. Thank you for your participation and support. If you have any ideas or feedback, as always, please feel free to share them with us. 


Sincerely,


Matthew Simberg, M.Ed.
Head of School
 
MSOE Goes Green
It has been a great experience incorporating non-toxic cleaners into our school this year. If you are interested in finding out more information about our Going Green Fundraiser, please email Patty to schedule an overview and learn how you can participate and foster wellness in your home.

Toddler Update

Dear Parents,
 
Welcome to the 2017-2018 School year in the MSOE Toddler Community! I hope that you had a wonderful summer and I look forward to the upcoming school year with your little ones!
 
It was so nice to get a chance to spend a little time with you at our School Picnic. I hope that you all enjoyed it as much as I did. Thank you all for coming to our Collaboration/Back to School Night. I hope that you found it both informative and got a chance to socialize with other parents.
 
Our class has adjusted to the toddler classroom beautifully in such a short period of time. All of the toddlers are happy as they walk into the classroom everyday and are very busy in their new environment. They are free to move about the classroom and choose their own work based upon what interests them. The children are getting accustomed to our daily routine and are discovering their independence, which is one of the main goals in our environment. 

The toddlers planted beautiful plants in pots to beautify our classroom and we made applesauce from scratch which ALL the children loved! Please be on the lookout for pictures of these two fun-filled activities.
 
Wishing the happiest of birthdays to our following toddlers;
                Moe                      September 6th
                Caden                   September 24th
                Margot                 September 26th
 
Just a gentle reminder to label your child's name of all of his/her belongings, including nap mats, clothing, backpacks, lunchboxes, water bottles, etc. 
 
Thank you to all of our families for making this year a great one from the start!
 
Sincerely,
Ms. Chris


Primary Update

Dear Primary Parents,
 
Welcome to a new school year! Ms. Anne and I have been very pleased to welcome all your children into the Primary Classroom. We have had much excitement this first month of school. In such a short amount of time we have shared:
  •  Two birthday celebrations
  •  Our song of peace to the world during international peace day
  •  Sentiments of thanks during lunchtime
  •  Summer stories and new conversations with one another
  •  Many books, songs, movement activities, and art projects.
The classroom community has been a buzz of activity. Each child has begun the process of acclimating to the work cycle. Through purposeful work, the children are feeding their developmental needs, and in turn, aiding them further toward their conquest of independence and self-construction.  

The younger and new students are eager and quite observant of the nuances of their new environment. They have received many lessons on practical life. Whether it be spooning, pouring, watering a plant, unbuttoning a dressing frame or polishing wood or silver. These exercises provide a foundation for the children's need for order. Also, the work in the practical life area establishes a framework for later work in the sensorial, math, and language area. Additionally, it provides opportunities to refine movement and orientation to their new environment.

The older children have hit the ground running! They have received new lessons on the bells and decanomial square, as well as revisiting larger works such as the puzzle map and skip counting with the long chains from the bead cabinet, and much language through the sandpaper letters, movable alphabet, and reading of books. They are delving into challenges that strengthen their concentration and feed the human tendency for self-perfection. 

Moreover, most conscientiously, they are stepping up to the plate to take an active role as leaders in the classroom. The children are taking on responsibilities that help the class room and our community to function as a whole. This work will help to build upon their self-confidence and support the transition into elementary.

All in all it has been a solid start for the Primary classroom. Ms. Anne and I are very much enjoying getting to know your children. We look forward to keeping the ball rolling, and thank you all for your continued support!
 
Mr. Carl and Ms. Anne
 


Elementary Update
 
With several new students from the Primary Program and from outside our community I am happy to share that our first month of school has gone off to a really good start. This is the first time that I can remember that in such a short time all of the students regularly walk into the classroom and choose a work straight away. Everyone seems quite happy and motivated. It is such a nice feeling to be back and to get to experience all of your children and what they have to offer.

Several families have donated very unique plants which the children are really enjoying. The new tone bars have been a hit in the classroom. Some of the children have started a project on boats and bridges. They would like to go to the local library to bring books back so they can do research and write a little report. If there is a parent who would like to take them, please let me know. Ms. Mary could go with them, but I thought it would be nice for a parent volunteer to go with them too. Additionally, if there is a parent or two with a green thumb who would like to help our children with the garden, please let me know that too.

As you have probably already seen, your children have had many lessons. Some other things they will be learning about are the history of language and writing, The Coming of Human Beings, A Timeline of Life, A story about Plants, The History of Mathematics, The History of How Geometry Got its Name, and what essentially makes humans different from animals and why that is so special with our abilities to love and use our imaginations. Of course they will also continue to have the lessons to reinforce practical academic needs too. We will also continue to include the teaching of skills for conflict resolution, being responsible for work and the environment, listening skills, body language, breathing techniques for relaxation, and opportunities to choose to be a leader. 

The last leadership course I just attended gave me the perspective that leadership is actually a choice and not so much a skill or innate talent. I thought this was an interesting perspective to think about and implement. Upon thinking about this, I find it important to think of ways to impart this on to your children as well.

In conclusion, I am really looking forward to this school year with your children. We have had a lot of good times, memories and laughs together already. Feel free to contact me anytime to share experiences, thoughts, or insights. Please think of this as a year of collaboration where we are on a journey together to support your children's growth and individuality, to be positive interdependent contributing members to their society. What activities or experiences are you having at home that have occurred thus far which are new?


-Mr. Matt

Holistic Health & Nutrition with Mrs. Jamie

 
I'm so happy to see all the of the lovely MSOE families again and hope that you've thoroughly enjoyed your summer!  I'm so happy to get in the kitchen and start making healthy snacks with the elementary and primary students this year! 

Healthy eating is so important for all of us, especially for children whose bodies and brains are still developing and growing. I like to share with students that it's important to eat a wide variety of colorful foods, eat foods that are closest to nature and consume foods with minimally added sugars. 

With the school trying to encourage children to bring in healthier food choices this year, I wanted to share a few ideas for healthy nut-free snacks.
 
  • Hard boiled eggs 
  • Kale chips
  • Fruit salad 
  • Chopped veggies with guacamole 
  • Hummus with blue corn tortilla chips
  • Popcorn 
  • Oatmeal balls (See recipe below)


Oatmeal Energy Ball Recipe- 

Ingredients 
1 Cup Rolled Oats
1Tablespoon Sun Butter 
1/4 Cup Rice Cereal 
1/2 Banana 
1 Teaspoon Honey 

Directions- 
Mash banana. Add oats to mashed banana then mix together. 
Add in the remaining ingredients. Roll batter into 1 inch in diameter balls. 
Chill balls in refrigerator for 30 minutes. 
Enjoy! 

Serving Size
Makes approximately 12 balls

On Yoga by Ms. Tiff

Yoga sessions have been awesome so far this year. We've really made the most of our time together. This year, we will be focusing heavily on mindfulness (observing, noticing, being present). Each week our sessions will follow a predictable flow. We will start out with a breathing exercise, then do the Yoga Sun Dance (Sun Salutations for those of you with your own practice), followed by a series of yoga postures. Then, we will have some fun with a mindfulness "game" or activity, and finish up with relaxation. It might be fun to have your child teach you a couple of yoga poses when you get home on Fridays. This will help them revisit what we did in the session that day, as well as let them be your teacher.  

In our first week together, we talked about our minds and the way that sometimes we can feel that our minds are just all over the place with thoughts. When we are angry, scared, frustrated, or even really excited about something, we have this feeling in our brains that nothing is settled. We have a hard time focusing or calming down. I shared a mindfulness jar with the children, and we will have it in the middle of our yoga circle throughout the year. The mindfulness jar is simply a jar filled with water and glitter. We shake it up in the beginning of class and then as we sit to settle in, we use it as a focal point. The glitter begins to settle as we sit. This is just what our minds do when we allow ourselves time to sit and be present. Our minds settle and become clear again. 

Some of the children asked if they could make one of these jars at home, and some even told me that they did go home and make one. I think this is a great and easy way to bring some of that mindfulness into the home. It gives the children a tool to use when life feels a bit out of control. I encourage you all to create a mindfulness jar with your children and keep it in a place where they will remember to use it. If you do it, I'd love to hear how it works for your family.

I do encourage you to explore some yoga with your children. You can find yoga for children on YouTube, or you could even take a class together. Feel free to reach out to me if you need a recommendation for a class...there are quite a few options locally.

I'm looking forward to exploring a fun and exciting year of yoga and mindfulness with your children.

-Ms. Tiff

 Montessori Seeds of Education | (609) 832-2546 | info@montessoriseeds.com | www.montessoriseeds.org
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