Friday, February 25, 2011

Transitioning From the Montessori Sandpaper Letters to the Montessori Movable Alphabet

NAMC montessori sandpaper letters montessori movable alphabet
This year long series looks at the experiences of teachers, parents, students, and Montessori education itself, as we follow a student through his first year at a Montessori Preschool. The Montessori Insights and Reflections of a Preschool Student’s First Year is a collection of useful stories, tips, and information that has arisen from one real student's Montessori journey, viewed through the eyes of his Montessori Teacher, Bree Von Nes.

Interest in the Movable Alphabet – Part 1
For the past couple of months, my Montessori preschool student Jordan, who just turned four years old, has been observing many of the four- and five-year-olds working with the Movable Alphabet and has obviously been inspired by his observations. Almost every day he asks to work with the Movable Alphabet, however, I know that Jordan isn't yet ready, therefore I am continually guiding and redirecting him to other activities explaining that he still needs to learn more sounds before working with the Movable Alphabet.

I try each day to provide Jordan with a Montessori three-period lesson using the Sandpaper Letters and then record his progress on his sound card.

As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Friday, February 25, 2011.

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Montessori Preschool Practical Life: Transferring Activities are Flexible and Fun!

NAMC montessori practical life preschool transferring activities flexible funTransferring is a staple activity in the Montessori preschool/kindergarten classroom. Students develop their fine motor skills, focus, and concentration while transferring small objects from one bowl or small container to another. Transferring activities can be set up in multiples so that young Montessori students may work on similar activities simultaneously, and can match the seasons or your students’ interests (see our article about customizing Practical Life activities An Interest In Practical Life). Transferring activities can be adapted and rotated as the needs of your students and your environment change.

As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Tuesday, February 22, 2011.

Thursday, February 17, 2011

Fun Montessori Math Preparation Counting Activity Ideas Parents Can Use at Home

Ideas to Reinforce Counting and Number Recognition at Home
NAMC montessori preschool math preparation counting activity ideas for parents to use at home girl jumpingThe Montessori 3-6 Math curriculum is fascinating to learn about and provides children with such a strong foundation of quantity as well as the symbols associated with each quantity. The materials build sequentially on previous learning, they introduce concrete learning before abstract learning, they are self-correcting, and they isolate the difficulty being learned.

Montessori teachers are fortunate to have such wonderful materials at their fingertips to teach such concepts, but what can parents do at home? I am continually being asked by parents for ideas that they can implement to further their child’s understanding of quantity and numerals and I have included a list of activities below. I have implemented many of the activities at home with my own children and also in the Montessori preschool. Enjoy!

As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Thursday, February 17, 2011.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Fun Montessori Language Arts Activity Ideas Parents Can Use at Home

NAMC montessori language arts activity ideas for parents to use at home reading a bookSound Awareness: Language Activity Ideas for Parents
The Montessori language curriculum is an integrated approach that combines phonetics and whole language. Children are first introduced to the sounds of each letter using the well loved Montessori Sandpaper Letters. Once several sounds are mastered, they can begin to write and read words by linking the sounds together.

Phonemic awareness (i.e., sound games) is an incredibly important aspect of learning to read and write and essentially, provides the foundation for more advanced work. A Montessori classroom is well equipped with a wealth of Language Arts materials to inspire young children and spark an interest in Language Arts. What can parents do at home? Parents are always asking for activity ideas that they can implement at home to follow up with what is being taught at Montessori preschool. I have included below a list of activities that might be helpful.

As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Tuesday, February 15, 2011.

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Activity Ideas for Musical Training in the Montessori Preschool Classroom

NAMC montessori preschool musical training activities children with instrumentsThis year long series looks at the experiences of teachers, parents, students, and Montessori education itself, as we follow a student through his first year at a Montessori Preschool. The Montessori Insights and Reflections of a Preschool Student’s First Year is a collection of useful stories, tips, and information that has arisen from one real student's Montessori journey, viewed through the eyes of his Montessori Teacher, Bree Von Nes.

Musical Training and Activity Suggestions
In our Montessori preschool classroom, we try and incorporate a variety of music and movement activities that help to build good listening skills, promote self expression and increase a child’s self confidence. The children enjoy playing games like ‘Sound Bingo’ and ‘Name That Sound’ and they enjoy working with Montessori materials such as at the Sound Cylinders and Hand Bells. We have a specialized music teacher who comes twice a week and it is such a special time for the young students. They learn about rhythm, rhyme and melody, they have the opportunity to explore various rhythm instruments, they learn how to keep a steady beat and they enjoy exploring different types of body percussion.

At the beginning of the school year, my three-year-old Montessori student Jordan was very quiet and rarely participated in such activities. But with regular exposure in a fun and non-threatening environment, he now has the confidence to stand up in front of his peers and hum a melody as well as participate in the various games that are played during circle time and music class.

As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Thursday, February 10, 2011.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Tips for Encouraging Normalization in the Montessori Preschool Classroom

NAMC montessori classroom tips for encouraging normalization children together
This year long series looks at the experiences of teachers, parents, students, and Montessori education itself, as we follow a student through his first year at a Montessori Preschool. The Montessori Insights and Reflections of a Preschool Student’s First Year is a collection of useful stories, tips, and information that has arisen from one real student's Montessori journey, viewed through the eyes of his Montessori Teacher, Bree Von Nes.

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

The Path to Normalization
What exactly is a normalized classroom? A normalized classroom refers to a Montessori environment where the children are working purposefully and cooperatively. Dr. Montessori described the normalized child as “...one who is precociously intelligent, who has learned to overcome himself and to live in peace, and who prefers a disciplined task to futile idleness.” (Maria Montessori, The Secret of Childhood).

The goal of any Montessori teacher is to recognize each child’s nature and allow it to grow. As the child chooses his own work and becomes absorbed in meaningful work, he soon begins working with continued concentration and inner satisfaction. When we see this in a single child, we call it inner discipline. When we see it in a whole classroom, we call it normalization. It is truly impressive to see a group of children work together in peace and harmony and it is what every Montessori teacher strives for!

As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Tuesday, February 8, 2011.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Collaboration Among Montessori Teachers: Forming a Teaching Partnership

NAMC montessori teacher partnership collaboration teachersExpanding Partnership Opportunities
Collaborating with Montessori colleagues outside of your classroom or school can be extremely beneficial. An example may be a collaborative partnership with a teacher (or teachers) of a similar age group as your Montessori classroom. Comparing notes and observing each other’s environments, record keeping, materials, etc, all contribute to ongoing improvements in your own skills and your Montessori prepared environment.

Ideally, your collaboration partner is someone who is outside of your daily classroom routine and can provide you with fresh and invaluable insights. This person could be another teacher at your school, a teacher at a nearby school, a teacher in another state or country, or a retired teacher.

As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community. © the North American Montessori Center - originally posted in its entirety at Montessori Teacher Training on Tuesday, February 1, 2011.
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As much as possible, NAMC’s web blog reflects the Montessori curriculum as provided in its teacher training programs. We realize and respect that Montessori schools are unique and may vary their schedules and offerings in accordance with the needs of their individual communities. We hope that our readers will find our articles useful and inspiring as a contribution to the global Montessori community.

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