December Banyan Newsletter

Dear Banyan Families,

We are grateful for November and the events that we shared! We shared gratitude in our school community, and we wrote thank you notes to the people who support us and spend time with us. Together we felt the happiness within us by giving thanks to each other. Our attitude toward gratitude will continue… “If you want to find happiness, find gratitude” – Steve Maraboli.

December will be a short and essential month for us all as we will be having “follow the child” and parent-teacher conferences. We will continue focusing on using our hands purposefully and avoiding expressing our feelings like fear and anger using hands. We will continue learning to breathe before we react with hands. Peace education is part of the Montessori curriculum as Montessori education prepares the child for life.

Speaking of hands, how about we review the purpose of our children’s hands for this month?

The focus of the month – “THE HANDS.”

The most valuable quote from Dr. Montessori about hands is: “The hands are the instruments of man’s intelligence.” What a powerful phrase that carries scientific reasoning in it. This quote became my mantra. When we touch, feel and work with hands, the signal will pass to our brain through the nerve system and help our brain process the information and store it in our long- and short-term memories.

Hands in action for working:
Our students in the Montessori classrooms touch to feel the quantity difference between one (one unit bead) and a thousand (one thousand cube). The real tactile materials will help them associate the number (symbol) with the quantity value when they do math operations. Every material in the Montessori classroom has a purpose behind it and are designed to help the child in his/her development. That is why we encourage our students to leave the toys/stuffed animals at home so that they can explore the wonderful Montessori lessons in the classroom. Moreover, their focus will be present.

Hands in action for calming:
We can teach our kids to use their hands to calm themselves by rubbing both hands, holding the hands together, and opening and closing both hands a couple of times. It is a good practice to use our hands to calm ourselves or control our feelings before we respond/react to the situation.

Hands in action for numbing the nerve system in our hands and brain:
So then, “Do our children learn through using their hands on the electronic devices? At this young age?” We all know the answer. Research has proofed that kids who use the electronic devices as a mediator in between our purposeful, fully working condition hands and the brain are struggling with writing and reading. In order to learn to write, kids first have to trace the letters using a hands-on material (sandpaper letters or numbers) and then use a paper and pencil to practice the writing. So again, “The hands are the instruments of man’s intelligence.”

Appreciate the usage of the electronic devices for meaningful tasks, and at the same time worry about these device’s place in our little friends’ hands, which is unnecessary and harmful for our kids.

December Events:
December 1: “Follow the child.”
December 10-14: Parent-Teacher Conferences- Sign up link sent via email.
December 10: NO SCHOOL FOR STUDENTS – Parent Teacher Conferences all day
Free childcare is available during your Parent Teacher Conference.

December Unit Studies:
We will continue the November unit studies and include the Winter theme.


Ms. Karthi and Ms. Desiree