Vol. 6, and Issue 4: December 2019
Message From Mr. Matt
A lot happened for MSOE in 2019. Great things are on the horizon for 2020! We will finally be in our new property in January. We have new families preparing to join our toddler and primary programs. MSOE will be working on introducing our summer program by the end of February which will include swimming and possibly STEAM for at least primary aged children. We will slowly be improving the grounds with various pieces of play and learning equipment.
MSOE is very appreciative of the families and staff who have been supportive and patient during this transitional process! It has been an arduous and humbling experience. The positive communication we’ve received from both current and future families means so much. The process has taken far longer than expected, yet we are accomplishing feats with relatively surprising speed. The irony!  
I look forward to embracing 2020 with appreciation, growth, and fulfillment between MSOE and families. We have a lot to look forward to and be thankful for already.

Believe it or not, re-enrollment and open enrollment for next year is right around the corner. We are expecting the toddler and primary programs to become full rather quickly before the end of this school year. Re-enrollment will go out at the end of February and Enrollment for new families will open soon after that in March. While we technically have open enrollment all year, these months are when we officially send out enrollment communications for next school year. We have 6 open spots in Primary for next year at this point. The toddler program has about 3 open spots. Please keep this in mind as you decide on your enrollment plans. Happy New Year to all!

Construction Update
Dear Parents,

What has been completed?

  1. The tie in for the fire hydrant from Bridgeboro Rd.
  2. Air test for the fire sprinklers
  3. Spackling and filling up the holes throughout the house
  4. Final inspections before final inspections

What will be completed over the next week?

  1. Bacteria and water pressure test for the newly connected pipes outside.
  2. Flushing water throughout the whole sprinkler system
  3. Finishing up the elevator
  4. Painting the whole house
  5. New tile where the metal spiral staircase was.
  6. Finishing both ADA bathrooms
  7. Final pavement and apron cutting for the driveway.
  8. Outdoor signs for the school

What will happen the week of the 13th?

  1. All final county and township inspections.
  2. DCA elevator inspection

We are on target to get our TCOs or COs the week of the 13th. Fingers crossed and prayers out for all to go smoothly. If it does, we are good to go! We are almost across the finish line. The contractors have been working weekends and overtime over the past two weeks. This has been a very stressful and nerve racking experience to say the least. Thank you so much for sticking with us and being willing to come across the finish line with us!
A few weeks ago, I received an email from the sign company stating that they could not use the image for the sign as it was. Several people responded to my request for help, and the image above is what will be used for the signs to be installed on January 6 th . I very much appreciate the efforts of those who assisted: Barbara Pearson (grandmother of Ethan and Noah Baratz), Daniel DiFlavis (father of Jonathan), and Oksana Kudina, a previous parent who had sent her daughter to MSOE for part of her elementary education. Oksana owns  SJPrinter. She lended significant time and effort to this project, and I highly recommend her company to get your needs met in a professional, courteous and helpful way! The signs are going up on January 6th!

Dear Parents,

I hope you all had a wonderful Holiday Season!

We had quite a few things going on in December! We were very busy regularly practicing for our Christmas Program! The toddlers especially liked visiting the Primary Classroom to sing with them. The Primary students are great examples for our toddlers! Mr. Carl and I are looking forward to participating in more events/experiences together throughout the rest of the year for our two classes to work and grow together as a school family!

We celebrated Dominik’s 2nd Birthday with a special treat and Eleanore’s family joined us to celebrate her 3rd Birthday with yummy fruit kebabs! Happy Birthday to you both!

Our theme for the month of December included learning about the Holidays of Christmas, Hanukkah and Kwanzaa. We learned how children in other countries celebrate the holidays.

Practical Life Work included Christmas Tree Decorating, and Opening and Closing Holiday Tins with special surprises inside to improve fine motor skills.

The Art Area was filled with fun painting and gluing activities with Christmas trees, reindeer, dreidels and more, but the toddlers favorite activity was decorating gingerbread men!

The Language Area provided a perfect way to introduce new vocabulary to the children surrounding the Holiday season!

The Math Area tends to be a favorite among our class this year. The toddlers really enjoyed the new math work that included Christmas lights, gingerbread boys and girls, and more!

Thank you to those of you who came to our Winter Concert, I hope you enjoyed watching your little ones entertain you and that you had a chance to mingle and get to know your fellow parents afterward.

We are getting that much closer to moving into our new home in Moorestown! I couldn’t be more thrilled, as I will be able to continue providing the toddlers with an authentic Montessori experience adding more experiences with the classroom outside in nature on over five beautiful acres. I know Mr. Matt is working on getting activities for the outdoors and a playground for them sooner rather than later to get physical more physical exercise more regularly! I can’t wait to start a small garden with them, while we wait for the greenhouse to get fixed up! We are of course looking forward to the butterfly garden getting set up in the English Gardens. What an exciting time to continue watching your children grow and flourish, but now even more so on our gorgeous grounds!

I know that it has been a long wait for all of us, but it is definitely worth the wait, because it will be the most perfect Montessori environment for you children!

I hope you all had and have a very blessed, happy and healthy New Year filled with much love and joyful experiences with your little ones!

Best Regards,
Ms. Chris
Dear Primary Parents,
I hope that all of you enjoyed the winter concert. Certainly, we enjoyed seeing so many of you there, as I know the children were proud to share the experience with you.
The month of December was a meaningful month. It is particularly wonderful to observe the older children stepping into the role of nurturing leaders in the classroom.
We began the month by exploring the seasons in greater detail. Interestingly enough, many of the children in the classroom have sparked an interest in planets! Consequently, we explored
the names of our solar system’s planets, as well as specifics about Earth: the connection between the changing of the seasons and the earth’s rotation around the sun, temperature, and geographical highlights. The children got a kick out of learning about the coldest and warmest parts of the planet. As a classroom we explored the sandpaper globe and took turns pointing out where the north and south pole were on the globe, as well as pointing out the equator line.
The children also did many works related to the holiday season, whether it be drawing parts of a Menorah or Christmas tree, decorating the Christmas tree, washing a sleigh or sewing a holiday card. As a special treat, my sister Miriam Levie came in to do a presentation about Kwanzaa. She showed the children a traditional harvest dance from Guinea, West Africa called the Kuku. Also, in honor of Emilio’s birthday and Hanukkah, Emilio’s family stopped by to make latkes and share his birthday walk with the extended day students. Many thanks to Emilio’s family, as well as my sister, for sharing these wonderful traditions with the children.
Lastly, the children spent a great deal of time preparing for the winter concert with the
toddlers. I think one of the beautiful things about Montessori is that each age groups lends
themselves to nurturing one another. I always enjoy the process of witnessing how the toddlers
from last year become the primary students. Miraculously, their role has changed from being
an observer to now stepping into the role of a mentor for the younger students. As we approach the new year, we look forward to a new beginning in a new environment! The children continue to evolve and grow. Mrs. Mary and I, as always, feel privileged to be a part of this process. We wish all of you a wonderful holiday and look forward to a new year!
Best Regards,
Mr. Carl and Mrs. Mary

Dear Parents,
Our elementary children continue to experience a well-rounded education. For example, Mr. Carl's sister came to visit and she is a professional African Dancer. Here you can see that they were learning some dance steps and they had a great time. We touched on some American History. Five of the children were very interested in our American History timeline and did a lot of writing and drawing about it. Three of our students presented with the Adolescents about a trip they took to learn more about Native Americans. Of course we worked on reading and writing with the students. Three children got to learn about the parts of a laptop as they took the whole thing apart. Several craft activities and knitting projects were completed, thanks to our very experienced assistant, Ms. Anne. We conducted several science experiments, worked on typing, word problems, and various math and geometry lessons. Many of the elementary students also spent a total of three hours with the adolescents cleaning up garbage around the Merchantville community! The elementary students also participated in singing songs for our annual winter concert! Ms. Jane did some great and messy art lessons. We had yoga twice this month with Ms. Laura. You can also see Ms. Marcella's article below to read about mindfulness activities the elementary/adolescent students experienced with her throughout the month.  

Dear Parents,

December has been a challenge, with half our class out due to illness (when there are only 2 students, half is missing if one is sick) and because of winter weather we have also missed several weeks at the Knowhere Farm. As usual, we have adapted to all of these circumstances to make the best of the situation. Alan helped Primary students with learning to read (and made new friends!), learned to play chess, and cooked for our friends at Monmouth Montessori Academy. Since we were finishing our book, Farmer Boy, we made Almanzo’s favorite dish, Apples and Onions. 
Together with some Elementary Students, we gave presentations the last week before the holiday on the various Native American Tribes that they have been researching.
Since we completed all the Commemorative Ornament Special Orders, we made our first deposit into the Adolescent Savings Account at Republic Bank. We also concluded leading the Elementary Students in doing 3 hours of Community Service, earning a $200 grant from Merchantville!
Finally, auditions were held and we will be participating with MMA during the month of January in performing the musical, “Schoolhouse Rock.” Look for announcements for the show dates and times near the end of January. 


In mindfulness, we continue to breathe and use our senses to ground and center ourselves, to observe the environment within and around us, and to just BE.

When we give ourselves this opportunity, it is amazing to see how present we are, how open our hearts and minds become, and how much of ourselves we share with others!

Themes that emerged were self-care, gratitude, personal space, emotions, people safety, and respect of people, animals and nature.

We ended this season with intentions for kindness (toward ourselves and others) and a reflection on our year, with both its challenges and joys, as we neared Winter Solstice. We discovered that sometimes, what begins as a difficult challenge, becomes an accomplishment of joy. Be encouraged, parents!

I hope you enjoyed your families and time spent together this holiday season!  

Ms. Marcella