Ms. Hayley and Ms. Emily
Introduction from Jessica Engel, Director of Operations
Ms. Hayley has been at Dancing Moose Montessori for two years, teaching in room 3, until last summer when she moved to room 11 (a 3-5 preschool class). She loved the way the preschool functioned with the Montessori theory and materials. She was able to open her own preschool classroom in room 4. With the experience in both worlds, she has been able to incorporate familiar items from the younger environment and newer materials from the preschool environment to create a fusion classroom that is easily adaptable for a younger mixed age group. This classroom dynamic has, for the first time, allowed the simplest transition for young three year olds. This new classroom will grow and function as the other preschool classrooms, in time, and have a larger span of ages and abilities. Maria Montessori certainly knew what she was doing when she developed mixed age groups. The effects are astounding, as older children, with a foundation, model for younger children.
Ms. Hayley and Ms. Emily are our featured teachers this week. They teach our early pre-schoolers in room 4 and do a wonderful job. The dynamic in room 4 is cooperative and lively. Ms. Hayley and Ms. Emily have a great time singing songs, telling stories and teaching the budding concious minds of early childhood. Ms. Hayley has a love for art that is incorporated into the monthly unit studies and weekly art activities that are created specifically with these students in mind.
Ms. Emily is new to Dancing Moose Montessori. She interviewed with us in December and we could not wait to get her started. We have been so pleased to work with her, as she has a calm energy that flows with Ms. Hayley and the students in classroom 4. She is kind and gentle, yet assertive and direct. This is a winning combination when it comes to a well-managed, well-balanced classroom. Ms. Hayley and Ms. Emily are a perfect duo, which is essential when it comes to happy children.
Teacher Speak: From Ms. Hayley
One of my favorite subjects was Investigating Water. Not only is there so much to learn from something so simple, there is a lot of fun to be had. One afternoon we “dove” into water. We used tubes, funnels, water wheels, pitchers and sponges to see what water can do. Luckily we had this unit during the Summer, so a water day was in order. As with every water day, we learned who likes and dislikes the feeling of water splashed on their body. The water cycle from the perspective of “Ralph Raindrop” was very interesting to students as well. He went from an ocean, to a cloud, to the sun and back into the ocean again. What a life!
Worktime is one of the most important aspects about Montessori learning. The work that fills the shelves is ever added upon and replaced. This is because of the excitement that overcomes the attitude of the classroom when a new work is introduced. This week, awe enveloped the classroom as I showed a new felt board with attachable facial features and hair to form emotional expressions. Students almost knocked each other over in an effort to choose their work first. They love to try new things, and I love to give them the opportunity.
Questions and Comments to Smile About
We had an epidemic of shoe removal at naptime a couple of months ago, so I explained to the students very clearly that shoes are to be kept on in case of emergency, particularly fire emergency. A couple of days later as a child laid down to rest, she looked up at me dreamily and said “Ms. Hayley, will you tell us about the fire again?” as though it was a fairy tale.
Creative Arts Project in an Integrated Curriculum
Recently, we discussed the state flower, the sego lily, in our survey of Utah, which lead us to a delightul art project. Students were each given two flower shaped coffee filters. The students colored the coffee filters with washable markers, then a teacher sprayed the coffee filters with water. The filters were left to dry over night, then attached to a pipe cleaner the next day, making a lovely, colorful flower. It was fun to see what happened to the colors when they reacted to the water. The students were excited to have made something so beautiful as well.
Posted: February 9, 2012