W E D N E S D A Y  W E E K L Y
January 9, 2019
In this Issue

Upcoming Events

January 10
9:30 a.m. & 5 p.m.
Tell a friend!

January 11
Deadline for WMS sibling applications

January 12
10 a.m.
Tell a friend!

January 17
8:30 a.m.

January 22-24
Toddler Conferences
(all classes still in session)

January 23
Information Night for Parents of Rising Primary (3-6) Students 
5-6 p.m.
Great Room

January 25 & 28
Middle School Conferences - no classes for these groups only, pre-registered child care available

January 29-30
Toddler Conferences
(all classes still in session)

January 31
Bring Your Parent to Work Day
Class start time - 10 a.m.

WMS Birthday Celebration
10:15 a.m.
Parents welcome!

Hospitality and LEGO
Message from
Head of School Lisa Lalama

Read more from Lisa on the Montessori Message blog.
If you've walked through the WMS lobby in the past couple of months, you may have been approached by a middle school student asking you to participate in a survey. The middle-schoolers want to open a coffee shop and have surveyed staff and parents, asking about their coffee preferences and how often they might purchase a quality coffee beverage or treat. They are learning just how much work it is to start a business, even a small one. They've met with a local small business owner, researched organically grown coffee and begun to explore the costs associated with this endeavor.

Last week they worked with WMS parent David Kubacki and an assortment of LEGO materials to learn more about hospitality and what it means to be hospitable. David led them through several "building" experiences that allowed them to explore their thinking further.  They began by building ducks just to explore the versatility of LEGO bricks and how many different iterations there can be using the same number of pieces. 
"This is the first time I've worked with non-adults using the LEGO Serious Play Method, and it was so refreshing to see how innovative and thoughtful the students were with every single model they built," David said. "Also, how much they respected the process and each other. I was completely in awe of the maturity and intelligence of the entire group!"

Working through a series of individual activities they then began to work together to tell the story of how they can create a culture of hospitality in their coffee shop. However, that is not all that happened. Our middle school students shared their insights and observations through their LEGO creations. Students who sometimes are reluctant to share their thinking or put their ideas into writing were able to clearly express themselves using multi-colored bricks. As WMS middle school teacher Mandy Balanetsky said, "They all felt their ideas had value and they were able to express themselves more easily with the use of LEGO bricks."

The enthusiasm these students have to bring their ideas to reality is palpable. They want to serve their community, support fair trade farming of coffee beans and, of course, make money. They have grand ideas and are slowly recognizing just how big this work is and how much learning they have to do to make it happen. The wonder of this work is their enthusiasm to learn - through creating and administering surveys, analyzing results, researching coffee beans, interviewing small business owners and building with LEGO bricks. An onlooker might say this isn't work or ask where the learning is. We know better. It's hard work and they are thrilled to be doing it. Stay tuned for future articles about the WMS middle school coffee shop... name coming soon.

News & Notes News
financialaidFinancial Aid: Applications Now Considered As Funds Allow

The deadline to be considered for a first-round  financial aid award was 
Monday. However, f inancial aid applications completed after January 7 will be considered as funds allow. If you are still interested in financial aid for the 2019-20 school year, p lease contact  Nancy Oddo as soon as possible .

The Mawhinney sisters, June (left, Room 20) and Violet (right, Room 19), pictured here with their mom, Jeannie, were our first WMS family to re-enroll for 2019-20! 
It's Time to Think About Re-enrollment 

This week, current WMS families will receive an email about re-enrollment from Director of Admissions Tiffany Harrison. 

Please fill out your child's re-enrollment forms through our online re-enrollment system by  Friday, February 15, in order to secure his or her spot for the 2019-20 school year. After February 15, classroom spaces will be made available to new families. Some WMS programs are near or at capacity, so it is important to meet the February re-enrollment deadline. Submitting your re-enrollment contract on time will also allow us to offer contracts to our wonderful teachers earlier in the spring.  Your child's space is not secure until WMS has received the enrollment contract and deposit.

In addition, please remember the  sibling application deadline for the 2018-19 school year is this Friday, January 11

Please contact  Tiffany Harrison if you have questions or do not receive the re-enrollment email by tomorrow, January 10. If you prefer to use paper forms for your child's re-enrollment, you may stop by Tiffany's office or the front desk for a re-enrollment packet.

Last Chance for Winter/Spring After-School Enrichment Programs
Registration for  winter/spring after-school enrichment programs is still open (some classes start this week)! Check out  WMS's 2019 winter and spring enrichment lineup. We're especially looking for Primary recruits for our mixed media art class, Lower Elementary students for tennis, and Lower and Upper Elementary aspiring knitters for our knitting class. Specials are geared toward specific ages - check the  WMS website for more information and to  register online.
Camp Montessori 2019 Registration is Open
Winter is here, so naturally it's time to start thinking about summer. Camp Montessori registration for the 2019 season, which runs from June 17 through August 23, is now open.

Last year, some programs filled to capacity so be sure to sign up early. You'll also get an early registration discount  if you sign up for five or more weeks (per family) by March 31. Register today!

leaders Today's Learners
Toddlers Strike Curious Animal Yoga Poses

Walk into Toddler Room 5 and be prepared for the wildlife. No, not because the toddlers are running wild. In fact, it's quite the opposite: toddlers are learning to mimic animals they've been learning about since the start of the year through yoga poses. 

(Left to right): Starting the morning with lion's breath, counting breath, husky pose, snowy owl pose

In the fall, the Room 5 toddlers were introduced to safari animals, and focused on learning to control their breath. First they learned what Toddler lead teacher Lynda Coan calls "lion's breath" - breathing out like a lion's roar. Then they learned counting breath: breathing in, the children use their fingers to count to five, and repeat the process breathing out. 

"The goal of the process is self-regulation," Lynda explained. "They can control their minds, control their bodies and control their breath."

Lynda adds that teaching toddlers self-regulation is one of the most important lessons to prepare them to move up to the Primary Program. 

Once the toddlers were familiar with lion's breath, they were introduced to the concept of quiet, using the book "Quiet," by Tomie dePaola. As they begin the new year, they will start learning yoga poses based on their upcoming study of arctic animals. From a selection of books about arctic animals, the toddlers will learn which animals hibernate, migrate and adapt during the winter months. They will learn specific yoga poses to represent the arctic animals they learn about - including the arctic fox, arctic seal, caribou, husky, polar bear, puffin and snowy owl - and use these poses as they retell the stories. These poses also provide an introduction to the art of tableau -  a theater technique in which actors use their bodies to create frozen pictures of different scenes. 

"Using tableau in a toddler classroom is a good way to build body awareness and control of movement," Lynda said. 
Toddlers experiment with back-to-back breath, feeling as the child behind him/her breathes in and out

Lynda plans to ask some of the older children to take this tableau exercise one step further by creating their own poses to represent other animals, artwork and stories. Reinforcing concepts through movement is one way teachers at WMS are integrating the arts to help children more fully engage in lessons. Across all levels, you can find art forms woven into traditional lessons - it's part of our school's commitment to arts integration

The Wednesday Weekly shares WMS news and events that are relevant to the families in our community.  

Please send submissions to wednesday-weekly@wmsde.org by 4:30 p.m. on the Friday prior  to the issue in which you wish to include your information. Content may be edited for length and style and may be held for a future issue due to space constraints.  

For more information, contact Noel Dietrich, Director of Advancement & Communications.

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