• Kate Schiffman

Kindergarten - March 2020

On Reading:

“This great discovery, this great emotion is one of the most wonderful feelings

humankind can have. Adults will perhaps some day recollect this marvelous fact.

"The following happened in a school: while children were beginning to learn to read, one

of the boys came to school with a folded piece of paper which he had kept in his

[pocket]. He called a dear friend and said, “Listen, you wouldn't believe it, but there is a

story in this”, and he read it to him. The other was filled with great wonder. “How”, said

he, “can there be a story there?” He in turn hunted secretly among the books at home to

see if he could find a story, and having found one, he tore out the page, folded it, and he

too carried it to school. Without the teacher’s knowledge, it came about that every child

carried hidden in their clothes pages torn from books."

--Maria Montessori

Hello all,

With our last newsletter I spoke about choosing bigger works and going deeper into

ideas and problems. That was more timely than we realized with many of the deep

conversations we have been having in Kinder. How lucky I feel to be part of these insightful

conversations with them! I only expect more questions, wonderings and worries to come and

will relish every minute!

However I want to dive into something completely different which is language and

reading. One of the beautiful things about the Montessori method is its respect for the child's

learning and the trust that they will develop what they need too what is right for them. Many of

them have the astonishing moment mentioned above where they start reading. The joy, triumph,

pride and even relief about accomplishing something so monumental. This may be mastering all

of our reading drawers on one color to reading their first Bob book cover to cover. It is a

pleasure to watch their feelings about reading and themselves shift when they become a reader.

That also applies for all the big works they do and then finally after hours of focus and

dedication finish.

The children start making works to share all on their own, such as writing their own

books on their favorite dinosaurs, or posters about their favorite frogs. They want to start

sharing their ideas, interests and achievements with others. It is so exciting and motivational for

everyone to be involved!

We have been talking about the human body, and alongside that bacteria and germs.

We will no doubt continue those conversations in the coming weeks. The kids simply cannot believe we have helpful bacteria that live inside us and harmful bacteria that live on our hands

even though we cannot see them. Many more explorations to come I am sure!


Kate and Ambra


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