Lower Elementary

LOWER ELEMENTARY SOUTH HOMEROOM TEACHERS

Mary Cleland and Jennifer Sigurdson

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September 22, 2017

 

 

"The child is not an empty being who owes whatever he knows to us who have filled him up with it.  No, the child is the builder of man.  There is no man existing who has been formed by the child he once was."   Maria Montessori

 
We have new work on our Geography that is building on their prior knowledge of land and water forms.  They may be asked to label different land and water forms, follow directions to travel along a map to different areas or label specific land and water forms that are located all around the world.  This is a great way for the students to look at our beautiful world.
 
We enjoyed a wonderful presentation of the 4th Great Lesson performed by the Upper Elementary team.  We learned "How Writing Began."  It is always amazing to hear how it may have started and then how it has evolved into the many written languages that we have today.  Next week, we will have the opportunity to hear our 5th and final Great Lesson, "How Numbers Began."
 
This week the third year started their year long project with Imaginary Island. This is a much anticipated project with learning that touches on math, writing, geography, zoology, botany, reading and following directions, and collaborative learning.  They are partnered with another 3rd year student and expected to work together as a team.  The final project is presented at the end of the year within our classroom to showcase all that they have learned.  This is such a memorable project for them for years to come.  
 
Thank you to all of you that are donating money or items to our hurricane relief service learning project.  We appreciate all that you are doing.  We still have time left to collect items and money for shipping.  Also a reminder that our spirit wear sale is still going on as a way to support the shipping of our Care Kits.
 
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

September 15, 2017

    

"Joy, feeling one's own value, being appreciated by others, feeling useful and capable of production are all factors of enormous value for the human soul."

                                                                                     -Maria Montessori
 
We listened to the third great lesson this week- Humans Come To The Earth. This was presented by the upper elementary teachers. Please ask your child what they remember from this lesson. To correspond with these lessons, the classroom had introduced the timeline of life. The students have the opportunity to study the different eras, periods and ages that have occurred before their time. 
 
Montessori education helps to develop the whole child. In our classroom throughout all the levels, grace and courtesy, social skills, developing relationships and practical life skills are practiced. One way that the students are able to develop these skills is through our classroom jobs.  The students are given a new job every other week where they are trained by another student and responsible for taking care of a particular part of our day.  Some jobs take care of the start of our school day, some help with setup and cleanup of our lunch time and some help with the closing of our day.  The students also are expected to take care of the classroom all on their own when the need arises even if it is not their job.  In Early Childhood, they worked on learning to sweep, wash a table, clean crumbs off of their eating area...  In Lower Elementary, they clean up their own area and make it ready for the next person.  These responsibilities go far beyond learning to keep a community clean and running smoothly.  They are forming a connection with one another and seeing themselves as very important part of our community.  This is a great opportunity to work on these skills at home.  They are ready and willing. They just need you to gently guide and trust.
 
Have a great weekend,
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

 

September 8, 2017

 

The greatest sign of success for a teacher... is to be able to say, ’The children are now working as if I did not exist.’
                                               -Maria Montessori
 

This week our class was able to visit our Wood County bookmobile.  The students chose a book to read during their quiet reading times throughout the week. The bookmobile visits our school every week and we have the opportunity to borrow books for the classroom every other week. 

On Wednesday, we continued our weekly Great Lessons with hearing Miss Liz along with the rest of the Lower Elementary team present the 2nd Great Lesson, How Life Began.  This stirred up quite a bit of conversation and questions. Several students were able to express their own theories of how life came to be on our planet and changed over time.  These Great Lessons are wonderful ways to strike their imaginations and help them think and discover their own theories and viewpoints.  We enjoy listening to their ideas and many thought provoking questions.  We hope that they bring them home as well and continue the discussion.

Thursday afternoon was our first chance to experience Scholastic News.  This is a favorite activity of the students.  This is a group lesson that we work on most weeks. It involves reading aloud, learning about the wonderful world around us, answering questions that relate back to the reading and playing a game to see what they remember.  As teachers, we often find that they surprise us with all the information that they know from previous work. 

 Have a great weekend. Hope to see you the Black Swamp Festival.

September 1, 2017

 

 

Education is a natural process carried out by the child and is not acquired by listening to words but by experiences in the environment.”
 
-Maria Montessori
 

We are in full swing of the second week of school. The children are very busy exploring the entire classroom and its many work choices. Last Friday we ended our week assembling our classrooms peace stick bundle. This is an activity that shows the importance of community and the strength that being in one brings. Please ask your child to share about this activity with you.

 
Montessori offers children the opportunity to review lessons.  This helps the child to experience the work in a new and fresh way allowing the knowledge to become solid.  We are often reviewing throughout the school year and especially at the beginning.
 
Some new lessons that we have had this week involve geometry and numeration in our math area.  The students are exploring how to combine shapes to create a new shape and reviewing geometric solids.  The numeration is reviewing place value and number sequencing.  The second and third year are learning to create, build, and read numbers larger than a million!
 
On Wednesday, the elementary classes enjoyed the presentation of the First Great Lesson- How the Universe and Earth Began.  Our Lower Elementary teaching team told a story through pictures, experiments and storytelling to spark the student's imaginations and wonder of how our universe and world came to be. On our History shelf, we are exploring the parts and formation of our earth and volcanoes. There are 5 Great Lessons that will be presented each Wednesday throughout September at 9:00 in Oberheu. Please feel free to join us when you can.  Next week we will enjoy How Life Began.  
 
We are looking for parent volunteers to help with our classroom parties on Dec. 19 and February 14. If you are interested, please let the classroom teachers know.
 
Have a wonderful and safe Labor Day weekend.  We will see you on Tuesday, September 5th.
 
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

August 25, 2017 

  

 

“Never help a child with a task at which he feels he can succeed.” 

                                                                        Maria Montessori

Welcome to lower south! We first want to thank you for choosing us to be a part of your child's educational journey. We have enjoyed seeing our returning students and are eager to get to know our new friends. We know that communication is very important, so as a reminder, please contact us with any question, concern or comment by email, phone or scheduled meeting.

For the first week of school we are focused on learning about our community, as it changes every year. Already established friendships have reconnected and new ones are forming. As teachers, we are building a relationship with your child based on trust, respect and encouragement. We want every child to feel safe in the classroom and see it as a place to grow to the best of their ability.

In the classroom we have introduced the word study shelf. We are working on rhyming words. For grammar, we introduced the noun.

Our culture units this week are living/non-living, vertebrates and invertebrates for zoology. The botany shelf is discussing the parts of a plant, while geography is focused on the continent overview.

June 2, 2017

  

This week has been a wonderful time of celebrating another great year of school.  The students did a wonderful job of showcasing their talents in our talent show.  On Tuesday afternoon the Second Year presented their state researches to their classmates.  It is fun to watch them get excited about sharing what they have learned.  Most of them decide that they want to go to the state that they researched because the research made it so interesting.  

Thursday was our annual Island Day.  This is the day that the Third Year look forward to because they have the opportunity to share their island that they have created.  This is a year long project in third grade that involves building on previous skills as well as learning many new skills.  They learn several more land and water forms, how to measure area and perimeter, how climate and biomes relate to each other, writing a report, longitude and latitude and how to work as a group or with a partner just to name a few.  
 
Please make sure to look inside your child's backpack for their progress report.  The envelope includes a copy of the classroom year long report as well as each report from our specials teachers.  Please let us know if you have any questions.
 
Thank you and have a great weekend!
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

May 26, 2017

 

This has been a fun filled week of new lessons and experiences.  

 
We are reviewing the time line of life on the history shelf.  The students are enjoying exploring the different era.  They really enjoy looking over the time line and discovering the many different animals and plants throughout Earth's history.  
 
On our botany shelf, we are studying the plant kingdom.  They are working with the plant kingdom chart and plant stories of various plants that exist in our world.  The plant story material is a work that they need to read, understand what they read and then match up with a picture and label. They are finding these stories challenging but fun to learn about.  Here is one of their favorites
      We leave a trail of slime wherever we go!  We flow along, surrounding and absorbing bacteria and other kinds of matter.  Though we are very tiny, we think you will find it interesting to look at us through a microscope.  What are we? (answer is at the bottom)
 
Last week we studied light.  This week were are studying sound.  Once again they are putting on their scientist hats and working through several experiments to explore the many facets of sound.  They are finding out how sound travels, how it effects other things, how different pitches are made, or how to amplify sound.  
 
On Wednesday morning, the school community was able to watch a wonderful performance of The Velveteen Rabbit put on by BGSU students. Thanks to CAPE, we have had the opportunity for several years now to enjoy these productions.  We appreciate all that you do for our school community.  
 
Have a blessed 3 day weekend and we will see you on Tuesday, May 30th for Talent Day.  
 
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

May 19, 2017

    

Just two short weeks ago, we introduced caterpillars to our classroom.  Now we have butterflies!  The students have been enjoying being able to observe them and how they are preparing themselves to fly.  We will be releasing them some time early next week.  This has been an exciting way to watch new life evolve.

Wednesday afternoon, the students developed their inner scientist.  The room was set up with 11 experiments to explore and learn about light.  They had the opportunity to see why the sky is blue during the day and red as the sun sets, how a rainbow forms, how a periscope works, and how to make shadow puppets and why they appear.  They enjoyed doing the experiments as well as some extensions that they discovered on their own.  It was a joy to watch their faces as they made connections to the work and discovered something new.  

What a beautiful week of weather.  We have been enjoying the fresh air and sunshine.  With this wonderful weather comes bugs and sun.   If you have bug spray and sunscreen for your child, please bring it in so that we can have them apply it at recess.  

Thank you for being an important part of our community,
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

May 12, 2017

  

The classroom has been busy with researching in our botany area with the parts of a flower.  We investigated two different flowers at our lesson and noticed that not all flowers are created exactly the same.  This made us realize that we are thankful for the variety of flowers in our world.  

In zoology, the animal stories are available.  This work involves reading animal riddles and matching it with the picture of the animal being described. Our classroom has been studying the five classifications of vertebrates (fish, amphibians, reptiles, birds, mammals) all year and find they know quite a bit about animal characteristics.  There are several extensions of work that the student can do after they have read the riddles.  They can put them in ABC order, sort them in the five classifications of vertebrates, or research an animal further.  
 
Our math shelf is focusing on story problems.  They have been working on their math facts and processes this year and now they are using that work to help them solve these story problems.  They are realizing that their hard work is paying off.  
 
We would like to take this time to wish all the wonderful moms out there a wonderful Mother's Day.  May you be blessed with a relaxing and love filled day.  We appreciate all that you do for your students and for our school.   

May 5, 2017

April showers bring May flowers.  What do Mayflowers bring?
 
Pilgrims(you know you want to laugh)
 
Can it really be May already?  Time flies when you are having fun learning and that is what we have been doing this year and continue to do.  The students are enjoying teaching us and their friends amazing facts that they are learning around our classroom and at home.  It is so much fun when you get to teach someone something that they didn't know and see their excitement.
 
We have a new unit in our language shelf for learning how to write letters, thank you notes, postcards,and invitations.  This is a great opportunity for the students to learn a very valuable life skill of communication beyond technology.  This is often a favorite unit and this year is no exception.  The shelf became busy right after the lesson was given.  This might be a great activity this summer to do with them and have them write to classmates.  
 
Have a blessed weekend,
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

 

April 28, 2017

   

The students are spending a lot of time researching many subjects throughout the classroom. The zoology shelf is offering the opportunity to take a closer look at fish, birds, amphibians, reptiles and mammals. Geography is focusing on the Western side of the United States. The second year students are busy working on their final second year state research project. While the final project for third year students consists of an accumulation of the years cultural studies for their final Imaginary Island project. The students look forward to these and are really enjoying the research process. For botany, we are exploring with seeds and flowers.  In recognition of Earth Day, we will be discussing ways that we can help take care of the earth. 

We are continuing to review and solidify math lessons and processes. They have worked very hard throughout the year and are proud of the progress they have made. Please continue to practice math facts at home. 
 
Thank you to the parents and families that took part in the Spring clean up on Sunday.  Our flower beds look great.  We appreciate your time.
 
Have a great weekend and we hope to see you at MSBG Earth Day on Sunday

 

April 21, 2017

 

We are loving the weather! It is the time of year to start thinking about bug spray and sunscreen. If you would like to write your child's name on these bottles, we can keep them at school. if you feel that you have some here already please chat with us.

On Wednesday we had an assembly about summer safety by the BG Fire Department. Please ask your child what they learned about staying safe.

We added the conjunction to our grammar work and are continuing to recognize parts of speech throughout the classroom work.

Our zoology shelf is focusing on all 5 classification of the vertebrates. The children are reviewing and exploring the animals that fall into these classifications.  

 

April 14, 2017

   

We think that Spring is finally here and has brought with it some wonderful weather.  Please remind your student to bring an extra sweatshirt just in case the weather is not quite as warm as we hoped by recess.  

 

This has been a wonderful week getting to meet several grandparents and family friends.  The students have enjoyed sharing their work and classroom with them.  Thank you Grandparents for taking time to visit and for making our classroom a buzz of excitement.

 

We hope that you and your family have a wonderful and blessed extended weekend.  

 

We will see you all on Monday,

Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

 

April 7, 2017

  

Happy National Poetry Month.  We are continuing our focus of poetry in our Writer's Workshop time on Fridays. We set up the poetry museum a few weeks ago for them to begin looking at their world through a poet's eyes. They have listened and read poetry from several different authors.  Now we are setting up the poetry museum again and they are trying their hand at creating their own pieces.  Let the creativity flow!

Our third year have been busy this week with a special math lesson.  They have been meeting each morning and working on the Decanomial lesson that focuses on the multiples from 1x1 to 10x10.  They have explored all of the squares and cubes 1 through 10.  The final result forms the pink tower.   
 
Third year will also be joining 4th-6th graders at Prime Time Reading Night. This is an over night sleepover at school where we focus on reading.  They have an opportunity to read silently, do group activities that involve reading and watch a movie together.  This night has become one of the students' favorite nights and they look forward to it each year.

 

March 31, 2017

  

We are loving the sunshine and the warmer temperature. Please keep in mind that when it rains, our playground becomes a muddy mess. It might also be helpful to have your child bring a sweatshirt or sweater that they can wear in the classroom, but take off as needed. The temperature is unpredictable.

 
We have added whales to the zoology shelf. The children are having a great time researching and teaching us what they are learning about mammals. For our science unit, we are exploring with simple machines. They are working with machines such as the lever, the pulley, the wheel and axle, the inclined plane, the screw and the wedge. Please explore your home and see what simple machines you use or have available to you.
 
Our students have officially published their first book in the 2017 school year. They are so proud of the patience that is needed to go through the writing process. We shared our stories with each other on Wednesday during our publishing party.
 
Thank you for your cooperation and understanding for the teachers Professional Development Day on Friday. We are excited to visit a fellow Montessori School in Dayton. These opportunities offer an irreplaceable chance to network, gain new ideas and share experiences with other teachers and schools.
 
Have a great weekend.

March 24, 2017

 

This has been a wonderful week to get outside and experience the many different weather conditions that Ohio has to offer.  What a difference from last Friday!

 
Our classroom has been buzzing with the excitement of new math lessons. The students are exploring new math processes and new math materials. This has been a fun experience for both students and teachers as they go deeper in their understanding.
 
We have said "goodbye" to Europe and we are now visiting the western United States of America.  These include Hawaii, Alaska, Washington, Oregon, California, Idaho, Montana, Utah, Wyoming, Colorado, Nevada, Arizona, and New Mexico.  The students were eager to share what they already knew about several of the states during the lesson but are also excited to learn more.  If you and your family have been fortunate enough to go to one of these states and you have something that they would enjoy sharing, just let us know.  
 
As we are writing this newsletter, the students are enjoying silent reading. We wanted to share how wonderful it is to watch them growing independent in their reading.  Silent reading is designated to them various times throughout the week to give them the opportunity to read a book of their choosing at their own leisure. We sometimes catch them "getting lost in a book" where they forget where they are and enjoy the story's adventure as they read. They are often recommend books to others, sharing a funny part to a friend or laughing out loud at something they just read.  This has become a favorite time for our classroom.
 
Have a blessed weekend,
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer
 

March 17, 2017

Welcome Back!
 
We have had a wonderful week back.  The children seemed to have had a wonderful time during their break but ready to be back in the classroom. This week we are ending our studies of the Presidents as well as exploring Europe.  We have learned so much from each other. 
 
New to our classroom is our graphing unit in the math area.  The students learn to create graphs, plot points, interpret and evaluate graphs. In Miss Jennifer's lesson  she had the students choose which cultural subject was their favorite.  She then had them form a bar graph by standing by the subject's label.  Zoology proved to be the most popular area.  These children love their animals!
 
In writer's workshop, we are beginning a new unit on poetry.  We have been sharing several poetry books with the students.  This has been a wonderful way to start looking at the world around us in a new way.
 
*This is one of our favorites so far.
 
Squirrel Forgets
 
Where
where
where 
did I bury
that nut,
 
that sweet plump
nut that I carried
away?
 
Where 
did I stop?
Where did I drop
 
that fat ripe nut
that I saved for 
today?
 
Did I hide it
deep and far, or
near?
 
And why's a new green
nut tree growing
here?
        -Lilian Moore

 

February 24, 2017

   
Welcome back. We hope that you enjoyed your extended weekend. The weather was beautiful. We want to thank you for meeting with us. We continue to be grateful for your children and for your trust in their development and educational growth. 
 
We are learning about mammals for our new zoology unit. The children know a lot about mammals and love to share new information with their friends.
 
We have added a new interactive environment for studying grammar. In addition to the farm, there is now a large tree. The children are being encouraged to come up with words on their own to build sentences for the new environment. They really enjoy this work.
 
This week the 3rd year student have spent one morning visiting the upper elementary classroom. This is part of our Moving Up Days that our transitioning grades visit the next classroom level. Our lower elementary students have been hosts to the current Kindergartners getting ready to transition to 1st grade. They love to give a tour of the classroom and work with familiar friends.
 
We hope to see you at the Gala. Have a great weekend.

February 17, 2017

  

Our new Science unit for the month is on the Skeletal System.  Every person has a skeleton made up of many bones.  Did you know the adult human body has 206 bones?

Students are learning that our bones have three main jobs: to move, to protect delicate vital organs and to produce blood cells in bone marrow.  Other activities on the shelf include learning the common and scientific names of bones, where they are located and what their function is in the body.  Students can also label bones on a skeleton.  

We had a wonderful time celebrating Valentine’s Day on Tuesday with lower south.  We can’t thank our parents enough for volunteering their time to make our party a success.  The children enjoyed a snack, a craft, and two games.

February 10, 2017

 

Thank you for attending the Bob Evans fundraiser on Tuesday.  What a great way to show your support for our school.  Also, thank you for turning in your conference request forms.  We look forward to meeting with you and discussing your hard working students. It is hard to believe that we are already into February. This school year is definitely flying by.

 
We started the week off with a school assembly to discuss Jump Rope for heart. We learned that our school has raised over $11,000 in the few years that we have participated. That is awesome!!! 
 
Our word study shelf is now introducing ABC order. We alphabetized everyone in the classroom by name and will be exploring the order of many other words.  In grammar, we introduced the adverb as a new part of speech.  We also have introduced the grammar farm.  This is a wonderful way for the students to label a miniature environment with the parts of speech that they have learned so far. They are also creating several of their own sentences and some short stories.  
 
Please remember that next week is a 3 day school week, followed by a 3 day weekend. We do not have school on Monday the 20th for Presidents Day.  
 
We look forward to meeting with all of you next week.
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer
 

February 3, 2017

 Happy 100th day of school!

It is hard to believe that 100 hundred days of school have gone by.  The students and teachers alike have learned so much over these 100 days together.  We celebrated with wearing something to represent "100".  Some chose to wear 100 things while others chose to wear something that measured 100 inches or 100 centimeters.  We also had some one wear a $1 bill to represent 100 cents.  These kids are clever.  They participated in activities that included putting together a 100 piece puzzle, guessing which jar had 100 objects, rolling a die 100 times to see which # would be rolled the most and collectively writing 100 words that had to do with what we have learned in the last 100 days.  
 
The history shelf is very popular because we are now studying the United States Presidents.  They really enjoy learning amazing facts about our presidents including their nicknames, what they did before they were president and how they made a difference in our country.  This year we are focusing on the last 15 presidents to research.  We learned the Presidents Song which sings the names of the presidents in order to the tune of America the Beautiful.  We will have to see if we can memorize the names and order of all 45 presidents.  
 
Thank you for all your support to our classroom. 
Have a wonderful weekend,
Miss Mary and Miss Jennifer

January 27, 2017

Our classroom has been busy with new lessons in our culture studies, language, and math. 
 
We are now traveling to the amazing continent of Europe to study it's biomes, animals, people and unique cultures.  As the students explore these works, they are able to get a sense of the connections to many of the works in other areas within on our classroom.  This is also a wonderful way for them to broaden their world view and their connection to the our global community.  We are already having students trying to compare the size of our country and even states to the size of the countries of Europe.  To think that their are entire countries that are the same size or smaller than some of our states, is amazing!

On the math unit shelf, we are focusing on fractions.  This is a popular shelf.  There is so much to explore and figure out.  They enjoy working with our fraction pieces that allow them to build the fractions and understand them in a deeper way.  These give them the chance to see what 3/4 looks like and compare it to a whole, to find equivalences, as well as add and subtract fractions. Feel free to expand this study at home. Have them help with cooking and see how many fractions they use. What fraction of pizza did everyone eat on pizza night?  Or what fractions they find while they were running errands with you? There are fractions all around. 

We have expanded our study of words to now include suffixes.  We are now exploring how the meaning of a root word can change with simply adding a letter or group of letters at the end of a word.  This work builds on their study of prefixes. Learning to see the parts of words in a new way and strengthens their reading, writing and spelling skills.

Please let us know when you would like  to stop in for a visit so your student can show you what they are learning.
 
Have a blessed weekend, 
Miss Jennifer and Miss Mary

January 20, 2017

   
 
You may have noticed a new visitor in our classroom, "Mr. Bones".  He has come to help our classroom with the new science unit.  There has been quite a bit of excitement about our new Science study of the Human Body.  This year we are focusing on two studies: The Skeleton Group and The Muscle Group.  Our classroom is starting by focusing on the skeleton and all the amazing bones that make up our skeleton.  There are various activities available that help them explore the common as well as the scientific names of the bones, where they are located and what their function is in the body.  Mr. Bones is one of the popular works where the children  are asked to locate the bones and place labels directly on his skeleton.  Needless to say this has been a very popular shelf.  

This is a busy time in our room where the children are showing mastery in several areas and we find ourselves trying to keep up with them.  An explosion of learning is happening and it is exciting to watch. This is where the small group or individual lessons are very important to our learning community.  They give both the teacher and the student a chance to sit down together and explore a new lesson at a pace that fits that child.  The connections to passed learning are strengthened and moments of discovery are given time to happen.  Our large group lessons have a purpose as well but the smaller and individual lessons allow both us as teachers and the students to build a relationship and trust that is very important.  Feel free to come and visit your student in our classroom so they can show how they are growing as learners.

 
See you at Movie Night. Have a great weekend.

January 13, 2017

    
 
Welcome Back. We hope that you all enjoyed time with family and friends over winter break. We certainly did and are eager to get the 2017 school year started. We have enjoyed listening to their travel stories and days spent with you.  Now we are ready to get back in "school mode."
 
First lets talk about this unpredictable weather! We have been reminding the children to pack for winter weather everyday. We encourage warm coats, snow pants, boots, gloves and a hat daily. Our meteorologist checks the actual temperature and also the "feels like" temperature before determining whether we go outside. It may also be a good idea to bring an extra sweatshirt or sweater to wear in the classroom and, if possible, an extra pair of gloves and socks.
 
In the classroom we have been catching up with missed friends and ready to move on to new lessons. Independent math and language lessons have been given and new units are out.

We are exploring with birds for zoology, prefixes for word study and we introduced preposition words for grammar.

On Wednesday the Wood County Hospital Wellness Department came in and spoke to us about eating healthy and making healthy food choices. We were able to participate in making a Sweetheart Smoothie and got to taste it too. Yum! The recipe was sent home with your child.
 Reminder that we do not have school this Monday for Martin Luther King Jr. Day. We will see you on Tuesday, January 17. Have a great weekend.

December 16, 2016 

 
The excitement of the upcoming holiday, school break and recent snow is in the air! 
 
Montessori follows the child academically as well as social/emotional. As we continue to progress through and refine our academic skills, we are also working on community building and social skills. Some of these activities and conversations involve how to respectfully ask a friend to work with them, solve a conflict peacefully and fairly, respect each others work responsibilities and focus needs and embrace the importance of teamwork and self awareness. These are skills that we will use throughout our life.
 
Lower South is filled with a variety of personalities, strengths and leaders. As teachers we are very honored to be able to be a part of their growth and development. It has been a productive and empowering first part of the school year and we are eager for 2017 and what surprises will come.
 
Thank you for your dedication and trust. Have a happy and safe break. We look forward to hearing all about your adventures.
 
* Please remember to dress for the weather. Many families find it helpful to leave snow pants at school for the week. We would also encourage to pack a couple sets of gloves. Especially if your child goes to aftercare. The gloves are usually still wet from lunch time at recess.

December 9, 2016

    

This week we are working with money. We are practicing the names of the coins, the amounts they represent, making change and adding up different amounts. This is a great to work on with your child at home. Counting the change in their piggy banks, paying for items at the grocery store or figuring out what the change would be.  

We are also exploring with a winter unit for language. This unit is focusing on winter themed books. We are discussing the author, illustrator, the setting, plot and characters. We are also beginning to write some book reports, sharing opinions on books and making suggestions on books for reading. 

We have also introduced the months of the year unit for our history focus. This unit introduces the names of the months, the order,as well as a historical story. We learned a little song that they can teach you. 

Thank you for your participation in the giving tree. All of the items on the tree were purchased for the family in need. What a fantastic way to feel the benefits of giving!  

Thank you for the support and attendance on curriculum night on. We understand that not all families are able to attend these events, but we encourage you to come into the classroom and work with your child. Please let us know when a good time is for you.  

Have a great weekend.
 

 December 2, 2016

  

Welcome back. We hope that you enjoyed the break. We certainly did. 

Our geography unit is taking us on a trip "Down Under" to the amazing continent of Australia.  Our study includes researching the many people and unusual animals that call this continent their home. We do this through exploring the biomes of the continent and culture of the people.  The students have many questions about the facts that we learned through our lesson on Monday.  We encourage them to do some research at home and share what they learn with our classroom.
 
The focus on our zoology shelf at this time are reptiles.  This makes the teachers squirm a bit but the students love learning the different parts of reptiles, the life cycle, specific features and what the diet and biome where they live are. This is becoming a popular shelf. We are working on them taking time with the research on a variety of reptiles and being able to share what they have they learned. 
 
Thank you for your support at the McDonald's fundraiser and we hope to see you at Curriculum Night on Tuesday, December 6th. Have a great weekend! 

November 18, 2016

 

We have had a very busy week. The room is filled with excitement and the students are too. We are taking the opportunity to review what "working as a community" looks like, sounds like and feels like. In the classroom we encourage both independent work as well as working with a partner. With this opportunity of choice comes the awareness that others may be making a different one. We practice being aware of our bodies and the volume of our voices and keeping in mind the respect that we have for our classroom, our friends and ourselves.

We introduced some fun new words on our word study shelf. We are working with antonyms, synonyms and homonyms. We are continuing to grow as authors and work on sentence structure in writers workshop. Please encourage your child to write about experiences that you have shared recently. You can discuss moments, vacations, experiences, conversations, observations and etc. 
 
This week we went to the planetarium at BGSU. The students enjoyed an hour long presentation on the star constellations and some stories behind their creation. Thank you to the parent drivers for volunteering their time. We also had a visit from the Firefighter Phil who talked about fire safety with a little bit of magic.
 
Next week is a short week. We have school on Monday and Tuesday only. We will have our Thanksgiving feast on Tuesday for lunch. If you feel that your child needs to have more food other then what we are preparing, then you may send in a lunch.
 
Hope you enjoy the parade on Saturday and have a fantastic weekend. 

November 11, 2016

 In celebration of St. Martin's Day our school is gathering for a parade. There are 3 workshops that you and your family can attend to create a lantern that will be carried in the parade. The workshops are Friday the 11thMonday the 14th andTuesday the 15 after school. The parade is on Thursday, November 17 from 6:30 to 8:00 pm. Anabelle and Carina Mora's mother came and shared a story about St. Martin's Day with lower elementary.

We are continuing to study the parts of speech in grammar. This week we introduced the verb and what it's job is for a sentence. The word "verb" comes from the Latin word "verbum", which means the most important word. This part of speech is symbolized with a red ball, which represents movement and energy. 
 
We look forward to going to the planetarium next Tuesday. The students are excited to revisit our lesson about studying the sun, moon and stars.
 
Thank you for supporting us on packing silverware for lunch and snack. Remember to bring in any extra candy for the BG Parade. Please sign your family up to walk or ride on the float.
Have a great weekend
 
 

November 4, 2016

 

Thank you for conferences last week. As teachers, it is a time to touch base with you on your child and share stories, moments and progress he/she is making. We definitely appreciate the involvement and the time that you put into your child's education. We thank you for the trust you have in us.

This week we are exploring biomes for our geography unit. We are working with the continent maps  and noticing the similarities and differences of their biomes. 
 
For history we are discussing the fundamental needs of humans. This is a great unit to discuss the difference between a need and a want.
 
Our geometry shelf is filled with our geometric boxes. We are learning the names of geometric shapes and how to manipulate shapes to create a new one.
 
On Wednesday, November 9 there is a free hearing screening here at school. If you would like your child to participate, please make sure that the permission slip sent home has been turned into the office.
 
Have a great weekend. 

October 28, 2016

 

With the week being just three days long, the students have been given the opportunity to work with a partner or by themselves each day.  They are growing in their social awareness to ask appropriately how to ask a friend to work with them, collaborate on what work to choose and then how to learn and complete the work chosen.  We feel that this is a very important life skill. Every year there is a new community formed. We cherish our established friendships and encourage the development of new ones.

In our language area we are exploring with syllables. We have started our day each morning dance and clapping out words to a syllable song. Ask your child to demonstrate the song for you. 
 
We borrowed Kermit from Upper Elementary to introduce amphibians this week in zoology. Kermit cooperated while the students located several parts of the frog.  It is wonderful to have living examples of the animals that we are studying.
 
Thank you for your time during conferences. We enjoy sharing with you all the work your child does at school each day. We appreciate your trust in allowing us to be a part of your child's educational development. 
 
Have a great weekend.

October 21, 2016

  

We enjoyed the Harvest Party in our classroom on Tuesday. Thank you to all the parents that took time to help organize, donate materials and volunteer their time. The crafts were adorable and the snack was delicious.

Wednesday the staff at MSBG spent the morning in ALICE safety training here at school. The afternoon was spent in our classrooms getting prepared for conferences. We understand that it can be difficult to make other child arrangements on school days and we appreciate the cooperation and understanding for the importance of this time for the teachers and school.
 
Our students continue to work hard during the school day. We focus not only on academics, but on helping to guide their social and emotional development as well. Practicing communicating with their friends, teachers and community members are life skills. Please encourage your child to be independent with tasks at home. Encourage them to make eye contact with people they are talking to in any situation. Allow them to order their meal when you are out to eat. Ask them open ended questions to encourage them to think and form opinions. Always remind them that they are special just the way they are.
 
Thank you for sending in your child with silverware for their lunch and snack. We are running very low on plastic silverware.  In an effort to be conscious of our Earth and resources, we are not planning on restocking this supply. 
 
We are looking forward to meeting with you on Thursday and Friday next week. Remember there is no school on those days. have a great weekend.

October 14, 2016

  

Happy Fall!

What a great start to this wonderful season.  
 
Our classroom is buzzing with excitement about our new culture units.  On our geography shelf, we are learning cardinal directions and how to read and follow a map.  The students love working with a partner as they explore this work.  We kicked off our new election unit on our history shelf with a chance for the students to vote on a president.  Scholastic set up a page on their website for students throughout the United States to vote. They have a great track record as they have not been wrong since 1960 with picking the president.  We will let you know as soon as we have any results.
 
**We are trying to be earth friendly and would like all students to bring in the silverware that is required for lunch. We are on a limited supply of plastic and then we will be OUT.
 
Thank you for sharing these wonderful kiddos with us each day and we look forward to meeting with you in a couple of weeks. 

October 7, 2016

 

This week we are working with roman numerals. This is definitely one of the favorite units for math. Explore and discover with your children where they might find some roman numerals. We also started our geometry lessons. We begin with the basic ideas. Ask your child what they learned in geometry.

New culture lessons were given this week. We are exploring fish on the zoology shelf and leaves are the botany unit. This is a perfect time of year to walk around you neighborhood and observe the leaves. Let your child share with you what they know.
 
On Tuesday afternoons, we have organized a time for literacy groups in the classroom. This is a time that the children can get together and read in small groups. This activity allows them to practice reading aloud, listening to their friends read and follow along. It's a great opportunity to enjoy a book and give reading assistance when needed.
 
We continue to give individual lessons in math. We have spent time reviewing from last year and rebuilding confidence in math. In Montessori we encourage them to use the materials until they can master a process without mistakes. Once a process is mastered without materials, we give them the next lesson. Please continue to work on math facts with your child at home. This is an activity that can be done a few minutes a day. Car rides, just before bed, while helping with dinner clean up, etc.
 
Remember to turn in your conference time requests. If you have any questions, contact us. 

September 30, 2016

  

We are enjoying Star of the week. This is a great opportunity for the students to share moments, stories, and items that are important to them. The other children get to practice being respectful listeners and learn new things about their friends. 

We had the fifth and final Great Lesson this Wednesday. This was the story of How Numbers Began. Ask your child to tell you what they learned throughout the last 5 weeks of theses lessons.
 
We are exploring with compound words on our word study shelf. For writers workshop we are focusing on small moment stories and adding more detail. In addition we are working on sentence structure and editing sentences. You can encourage your child to tell you about what they might choose to write for a story. You can encourage details by asking questions about their story, looking at pictures or sharing a story of your own .
 
The weather is changing. We will go outside when at all possible. This is the time of year when the temperature is sometimes unpredictable. Please encourage your child to bring a sweatshirt or jacket for recess. Also, the ground is wet and muddy at times. Water boots may be a good choice to wear if you have them.
 
Thank you for turning in your conference requests. We enjoy meeting with you and discussing your child.  

September 23, 2016

  

We continue to build a strong community within our classroom. Both the teachers and the students are learning more about one another.  One of the ways we are doing that is with our "Star of the Week" activity.  Once a week a student or teacher will be chosen at random to be our "Star of the Week" and create a poster to share (on the next Monday) that highlights the people and things that are important in their lives.  For the rest of the week they will then have the opportunity to bring in items from home to "show and tell" with the class.  This is a wonderful way to get to know each other and find out things that we have in common.  

We also work on building our community school wide with our annual International Day of Peace assembly.  This was a great way to bring our school community together and to also kick off our Peace Pals.  Peace Pals is a student led learning experience for Kindergarten to 8th grade students to learn ways to help make ourselves and our world better.
 
This week on our history shelf we have started to explore the Time Line of Life.  The students enjoy finding animals and plants that they recognize as well as very interesting and new creatures.  
We enjoyed a wonderful time with Miss Kasey presenting the 4th Great Lesson of How Writing Began.  Such a neat way to see how writing evolved over time and how it has changed our lives for the better.
 
The students are enjoying their start of writer's workshop.  This is an opportunity for the students to strengthen their writer's voice with personal narratives.  
 
Have a blessed weekend!

September 16, 2016

 

This was a busy week. We introduced several new culture units that the students are enjoying. In zoology we are exploring the ocean and the life that dwells there.  Our botany shelf introduces roots and stems and for geography we are studying land and water forms.

In addition to the several small group and individual math lessons, we are also working on >,<, = and expanded notation.

Our grammar shelf is busy with noun and article work. We are having fun with nursery rhymes on our word study shelf.

On Wednesday, we listened to the 3rd Great Lesson: Humans Come to Earth. We are really enjoying listening to these stories. Please ask your student what they thought about them.

**If you would like to visit some websites on Oceans and watch them with your student you could go to www.usbourne-quicklinks.com. Keywords "beginners seashore" or "beginners sea".

Have a great weekend.

 

September 9, 2016

 

We hope that you all enjoyed your long weekend. While this was a short week, the classroom has been very busy. We are beginning to settle into a routine and find comfort in the flow of our classroom and procedures. 

We listened to the 2nd Great Lesson - The Coming of Life on Wednesday. 
 
Thursday, we showed off our unique smiles with picture day. We would like to remind parents to please sign your child out at the end of the day if you come to pick them up. This is for safety. If you have any questions of concerns that you would like to discuss, please e-mail us and we will find a convenient time to meet.
 
A special thank you to the Iott family for our classrooms new pets. The donated a beautiful fish aquarium with several fish. The children are enjoying them and the calming hum its adds to the classroom.
 
Have a great weekend and hope to see you downtown at the Black Swamp Festival!

 

September 2, 2016

This week has been centered around working as a community.  To build and strengthen our community, we assembled our classroom peace bundle.  This is an opportunity to talk about the beauty of each one of us as an individual as well as the strength of the community.

We continue to review past lessons and prepare for new lessons in all areas of our classroom.  The students are working on planning and completing their daily work cycle (a math, a language and a culture). 
 
On Wednesday, we listened to the 1st Great Lesson, How the Universe Began.  Ask your child what they learned through this wonderful story. 
 
As a reminder, Monday school is closed.  We hope that you and your family have a wonderful 3 day weekend  and we will see you on Tuesday.  Also Thursday, Sept. 8th is picture day.
 
Thank you,
Miss Mary and Miss Mary

August 26, 2016

 

Welcome back to school. We are so excited to start another year. As always, our community has changed a bit. We have spent this week getting to know new friends and catching up with old friends. We have spent these past days reviewing our classroom, the work, responsibilities and setting personal goals for the year. The social dynamic of the classroom has been smooth. The children have missed each other and school. 

There are opportunities for families to volunteer in the classroom with reading, math, party coordinator and PTO representative. There are sign up sheets on the classroom door. In your student's mailbox you should have received information on The Five Great Lessons. They will begin next Wednesday August, 31 at 9 am in the Oberheu room. If you have any questions, please let us know. 
 
Also going home with second and third grade students are their student planners  There is a letter explaining why we use this tool and your involvement with it.
 
As a reminder, we are open and encourage communication throughout the year. We ask that we keep conversations at drop off and pick up short and schedule additional times as needed. Please remember to sign your child out on the classroom door and update your authorized pick up list in the office. Please contact us at  lowersouth@montessorischoolbg.org if your need to meet with us at any time throughout the year.
 

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