Respected Banyan Families,
“Our care of the child should be governed, not by the desire to make him learn things, but by the endeavor always to keep burning within him that which is called intelligence.”- Dr. Maria Montessori.
February was a love-filled month with community events, education nights and the friendship exchange. Banyans have chosen to learn about the African continent as part of our cultural curriculum studies. Learning about continents, history, and geography are always part of the Montessori curriculum. Every year at our school, Primary and the Elementary classrooms choose to learn about different continents, and its culture, biomes, people, animals, etc. And then we celebrate each continent on the Art Show and Cultural Immersion day, which will be on May 24. If you have any items or books about Africa and would like to share with the Banyans, please bring them in. We will take good care of them and return them after the Art Show. I enjoy this time of the year and the studies about different continents and its culture.
The topic of the Month
The importance of the Leadership year (The Kindergarten year) in Child’s Life
Maria Montessori has divided the child development into four stages; Four planes of development. The first plane is from birth to six years old. As far as School is a concern, she recommended only one smooth transition for each plane of development. For the first plane, the transition happens at around 2.5 years old/ when the child is ready; from the Toddler Program to the Early Childhood program (Primary Program).
It is almost the same theory as to how we believe that the child needs nourishment and care from both the parents, in the same environment.
Maria Montessori believed and proved that in order for learning to occur, the child must first feel safe in the environment and with the adults in the classroom. The first time for this to occur during the first plane of development is at around 2.5, and the next transition should happen at approximately six years old, which is the finishing stage of the first plane of development. It was not just a statement made by her; it was the result of her research, experience and the pedagogy that she has created.
Leadership level is a magical time in the child’s life as he or she approaches the end of the first plane of development. All the skills that he or she has learned will provide the backbone for the mastery of others. The mixed age environment plays a vital role in this year. Here, even the shyest child has the opportunity to lead. At this level, the child has well adapted to his/her environment; the classroom and the school have become a second home to the child. In many ways, she is master of her domain and finds that she may operate in the room for an entire day without needing assistance from any of the adults in her environment. The Kindergarten year is also a time of academic achievement. Children possess the patience to stick with lessons that just a few months ago would have been impossible. Because they have had ample experience in choosing their work, they recognize the need for diversifying their efforts. They will become a teacher to the younger students in the classroom. This magic of leadership would happen only by allowing the child being in the same environment for the entire plane of development.
March Primary Events
Banyan Bake Sale March 14 & 15
There will be a sign-up sheet outside the office to sign up for bake goodies, set up and break down. The amount we raise from the bake sale will go towards our classroom budget.
March Unit Studies
Cultural Studies – Africa
Ms. Karthi and Ms. Desiree