Teachers using the tools of observation are always on the lookout for this moment: we call it
the ‘tongue out moment’, when the child’s concentration is so focused that, without them even
realizing it, their whole body is involved in completing the task at hand. We respond in the
moment by leaving the child free to repeat the activity again and again. We use this
observation to identify the sensitive period of learning the child is in and plan future activities
to assist the learning progression. The development of concentration is one of the central aims
of Montessori education, for it is a natural human tendency incorporating all the senses in a
way that aids learning and leads to mastery of the self.
“The child who concentrates is immensely happy,” Dr. Montessori observed, and the child who
is allowed to practice repetition is following their inner drive to repeat an activity over and over
until they have mastered it. The work must be challenging yet possible for them to attempt on
their own, and just the act of squeezing water from a sponge to a pitcher becomes an
opportunity for focus, repetition and mastery of a new skill.
The toddlers are now enjoying the weekly enrichment activities of yoga and music. On
Tuesdays, Miranda leads us in yoga songs and movements like the Sun Salutation Song. She
introduces us to poses named for different animals that we love to imitate. She even brings
animal “stuffies” for us to squeeze, which helps us get a good stretch. Corey brings his guitar
on Wednesdays, along with musical instruments and scarves. You may hear some verses of Old MacDonald or Trot Old Joe as the toddlers become familiar with these beloved songs.
We tried out two new recipes during group cooking time this month: strawberry smoothies and
banana muffins. The toddlers poured berries and yogurt into the blender so carefully. They
mashed bananas and took turns stirring the muffin batter and scooping it into cups. They
contributed to the Woodland community by sharing the muffins at the All School Open House.
We hope you liked them!
It was wonderful to see so many families at Open House, and we hope everyone enjoyed this
peek into the classroom. It has been a pleasure getting to know all of our T1 families.
The Class Picture and individual photos taken in October by Kelly McKenna Patterson are now
available for you to own. We are so fortunate to have Kelly at Woodland to create these
adorable mementos. Our whole class was able to gather for the group photo—thank you
Becky Jones, Carolina Diaz and Tia Thao