November 4,   2016

Help us reach our goal of 100% participa tion! 
Montessori Works 



Eric's Earful: 
 Musings from the Head of School
My recent musings have left me reflecting on being independent as an adult.  Montessori, in the Absorbent Mind, said,

" The child's nature is to aim directly and energetically at functional independence ."  

This quote, as well as my ponderings have led me to consider what does it mean to be independent.  Does the fact that I might ask for help from my parents and friends make me dependent on them?  The definition of independence says that it means to be free from outside control or not depending on the authority of another.  When a young person turns 18, does that make them automatically independent?  What about the 11 year-old who stays home by himself for an evening while his parents are out?  Is he independent?  

I think Montessori would say that in both situations independence comes from the continuous practice of being independent.  In both situations, the older and younger student are showing independence on a continuum.  If the older student does not have enough personal skills, than they will have a harder time being independent, even though the law says they are an adult (who should be independent and can make their own decisions).  I have seen parents take this practice away when they get frustrated with their child over something that should easily be done, like cleaning their room.  I have been the parent that has picked up the child's room because I could not stand looking at it for one more minute, versus consequencing the poor choice by taking something from my son.  Did I take an opportunity away from my child by doing this?  Yes I did.  Did that one moment in time really hurt my son's quest to be independent?  No it didn't.

It is exactly for this reason that I think the Montessori philosophy towards this development of independence that we support here at Leelanau Montessori is great.  The staff expects the 2nd year to clean up his/her mess at lunch, however there are times when it does not happen and to force it will create an even greater problem.  I hear it called, "picking your battles" time and time again.  To argue with the 2nd year, who is having a bad day, can cause further problems in the classroom, both for the teacher and other students.  Our staff get to know the kids and can determine when it is appropriate to put the foot down and when it might be better to let it go (leaving the mess until later when the focus is off of the mess).  Similar to picking up my son's room, it will not hurt to do it every once in awhile, however to continue to do things for children that they can do for themselves will create children who cannot think for themselves or act for themselves while they are on their own.

I really enjoy helping kids, my own included, work through instances where it seems that they have failed.  Do I try to fix the problem for them (i.e. do the homework, yell at the referee, call out the other child, apologize to the student they wronged)?  Absolutely not.  I am okay with the child sitting with the feelings in their stomach in order for them to develop the empathy about the situation.  I want them to know it is okay to feel bad for a situation you are in, however I also want them to create the possibilities for how they can also take that bad and make it better.  It is in these small instances that adults help kids become more and more independent where they are going to have tools at their disposal as they get older to make the bad they experience better.  Solving the problems for the kids when they are young only makes the larger problems even more difficult to solve as they get older.  Independence comes from many of these experiences happening over the course of your young life and developing the ability to move your way through them and come out better on the other side.

No School on Monday, November 7th & Election Day Car Line
A reminder that there will be no school on Monday, November 7th.  On Tuesday, November 8th if you are a family who drops off and picks up your child at the main back entrance, please be aware of a change.  Due to voting regulations, we are not able to have our No Parking signage in the parking lot.  Also, the door the voters will access is down our main entryway.  Car line will run as usual except the signage and cones will be missing. We will have a few extra parents helping to keep everyone safe.   Please be mindful of the voters and show our Montessori cooperation spirit.  

Apple Classroom Fundraiser for Heifer International Organization

Apple students are conducting their first civic project to raise money for a farm animal to give to a family in need through the Heifer International Organization. We will be at the VI Grill every 
Friday through the month of November from 4-6 pm.  Please come to the VI Grill to get a cup of hot chocolate and make a donation. Hope to see you there!
Parent Education Night Reflection
We were fortunate to be able to share an evening with a dedicated group of parents looking at assessment within our environments at Leelanau Montessori. Those of you who were unable to attend, please be aware that I will propose doing this event again in the winter after our next testing session to look at and consider the growth of each of your students.  Please look at the information provided at the event for help in deciphering your child's scores on the assessments given out at the parent teacher conference this upcoming week.
I would be happy to schedule time to look at this information with any of you. Thanks so much for your trust in our staff and school.

Click here to access Parent Education Night information.  

Recipe Form Link- a hard copy will come home in Tuesday folders
 Leelanau Montessori Water Bottles for Sale in the Office $5

Looking Ahead..........
On Thursday, December 22nd we have an 11:15 a.m. dismissal day before we begin our winter break.  We are planning some special events this day.  We will have a Community Sing, Young Entrepreneurs Marketplace, and some sort of winter activities.  Stay tuned for the complete timeline and schedule.  
Board of Directors Membership Opening:

The Leelanau Montessori is seeking an individual to  join our Board of Directors. Our board meets the third Monday of the month, and is in need of a new trustee. Skills in education, finance, fundraising, grant, and marketing are helpful.  Trustees are asked to partake in at least one committee. Our committees meet the week prior to board meetings.
Please visit our website for more information:

The Board of Directors are in need of  volunteers  to join our Committees.
The following are meeting dates and times:

2nd Wednesday of the Month. 8:30-9:30 a.m.
2nd Wednesday of the Month at 5:30-6:30 p.m.
2nd Wednesday of the Month 7:00-8:00  p.m.
2nd Tuesday of the Month 4:00-5:00 p.m.
2nd Monday of the Month 3:30-4:30 p.m.
Grant Writing:  
2nd Thursday of the Month 6:00-7:00 p.m.
Academic Excellence:
2nd Thursday of the Month 4:00-5:00 p.m.  
If you feel you can contribute to a committee, please attend a meeting. All are welcomed!
After School Care Needs
We are exploring to see if there is any after school care needs for children in the Sugar Maple and Cedar classrooms (3 and 4 years olds).  Please send the office an email if your family is in need of care for your three or four year old.  Thank you.

  The Practice of Gratitude

~ The Geraci family for the donation of binder clips and construction paper
~The Fundraising and Gathering Committee for organizing a fun filled Fall Family Gathering event
~Kristen Wilson for leading Student Empowerment Groups
~The Academic Excellence Committee for organizing the Parent Education Night
~Jim Chacon for donating colored paper  
~Anita Abbott, Michelle Mork, Anneke Wegman, Julie Yoffy and all the volunteers who are reading with the children

***If you have time in your day and would like to volunteer to read with children. please give the office a call and we will hook you up!  It's great fun!!!


Community Updates

We have a unique opportunity for Suttons Bay students, parents and FOFA enthusiasts to see a WONDERFUL Broadway show not all that far from home!  "WICKED" will be playing at the Wharton Center on the MSU campus in East Lansing this fall!  FOFA will be taking a charter bus to see this amazing production on Sunday, November 20th.  For more information view this link!
-This week's 25 cent State Theater kids movie is Ice Age: Collision Course

Private Tutoring Offered:  Click here to find out about this service to our community.
Elementary Hot Lunch

November Lunch Menu
Dates to Remember

This Week
November 7: No School
November 8-11 Parent Teacher Conferences
November 9: Fall Dinner to Go
November 10: LOC Mobile
Hot chocolate sales at VI Grill 4-6 p.m.  

Coming Up
November 17:  Hot chocolate sales at VI Grill 4-6 p.m.  
November 23:  Harvest Feasts
November 24 &25:  Thanksgiving Break

In Search of:
-Sand Toys- buckets, shovels, trucks for preschool 
-Lamps for the Hickory Classroom
-Band aids
-Ice Packs
-Reams of Copy Paper
-Sea Salt for the Hickory Classroom 
-Vinegar and Baking Soda for Science Experiments  

Quick Links


Photos of the Week
Fall Family Gathering