November Banyan Newsletter

Dear Banyan Families,

“The miracle of gratitude is that it shifts your perception to such an extent that it changes the world you see.” —Dr. Robert Holden

October was an exciting month for the Banyans; we spent time learning our classroom routines, grace, and courtesy and helped our new Banyan friends settle into our classroom environment. We also focused on our monthly unit studies, along with our other lessons/studies. Banyans got an opportunity to watch two play performances from our Spanish Lime and Cocoplum classrooms. What a fantastic performance by our Elementary students!

Thank you for bringing your child early to school to support them with smooth morning separation and transition, allowing them to spend time with their friends to play and develop social and emotional skills.

“Development is a series of rebirths.” —Dr. Maria Montessori

November will be an essential month for us all, as we will be having “follow the child” and parent-teacher conferences. The month of November is harvest sharing month at our school; We will share love, care, and gratitude with each other, and will celebrate harvest sharing among the Primary classes. 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 our 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.” This powerful phrase carries scientific reasoning in it. This quote has become my mantra. When we touch, feel, and work with hands, the signal passes to our brain through the nerve system and helps 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 classroom touch to feel the quantity difference between one (one unit bead) and a thousand (one thousand cube). The real tactile materials help them associate the number (symbol) with the quantity value when they do math operations. Children feel the letters and relate the letter symbol to its sounds. Every material in the Montessori classroom has a valuable developmental purpose behind it and is designed to help children in their development. We encourage our students to leave toys and stuffed animals at home so that they can explore the incredible 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 their 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 electronic devices at this young age? We all know the answer. Research has proven that kids who use electronic devices as a mediator in between our purposeful, fully functioning hands and the brain may struggle with writing and reading. In order to learn to write, kids first have to develop the pincer grip, then 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 electronic devices for meaningful tasks, while recognizing the place (if any, at this age) these devices ought to have in our little friends’ hands.

“Within the child lies the fate of the future.” —Dr. Maria Montessori

November Primary Program-Banyan Events:

November 2: Follow the Child

November 11-15: Parent-Teacher Conferences

November Unit Studies:

Sharing

Corn-Parts-Practical Life Lessons

Vertebrates vs. Invertebrates

“The teacher must have a kind of faith that the child will reveal himself through work.” —Dr. Maria Montessori

Thankfully,

Ms. Karthi and Ms. Desiree