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Monday, October 5, 2015


The Upper Elementary annual trip to Healthworks! was on Oct. 1st. The students attended a class called, "The Change Will Do You Good".  After class, they are free to roam the interactive museum. 

See all the pictures on our facebook page. 

Wednesday, September 23, 2015

Practical Life in Upper Elementary

This week teachers all shared "Practical Life" lessons with each other. 

In Upper-Elementary, cleaning and taking care of the whole environment includes so many activities that connect to their early childhood days and Lower-El days. We also volunteer at Northwood memory and assisted living center on Day Rd. 

Some examples of practical life in the classroom are using a planner, recycling, cleaning tables, dusting, plant care, trash removal and gardening.

Thursday, September 10, 2015

Camp Eberhart

The annual UE field trip to Camp Eberhart on Corey Lake was a huge success. This year activities included were canoeing, lake communities, archery, rock climbing, tie dye, and of course beach time! More pictures and information will be shared at our assembly this month. Archery was the teachers' favorite.


Monday, September 7, 2015

The Great Lessons as a Unifying Theme

Clearly, these five stories encompass an enormous amount of information about the origins of the world around us. When each story is shared, it should never be left alone - there should always be further study open to the children so that the story becomes the springboard but not the focus. The stories can be referred to throughout the year when new topics are introduced, as a way of providing unity and cohesion to such a wide variety of studies.
The best source of further information on the Great Lessons can be found at The Montessori Great Lessons Page, created and run by Barbara Dubinsky. There you'll find detailed lesson plans for each Great Lesson, as well as background information and classroom activities. This site uses slightly different terminology for the names of the Great Lessons than I have used (there's some variety within the Montessori method), but the concepts remain the same.

Sunday, September 6, 2015

The Fifth Great Lesson: The Story of Numbers

The last of the lessons is the Fifth Great Lesson: The Story of Numbers, also called the History of Mathematics. This lesson begins with the earliest civilizations, who often only had "one", "two", and "more than two" as their numeric system. It continues with a look at different numbering systems throughout the centuries, culminating in the decimal system that we use today.
This lesson leads to the study of:

  •  Mathematics: operations, fractions, decimals, multiples, squares, cubes, percentages, ratio, probability, intro to algebra
  •  Numbers: origins of numbers and systems, bases, types of numbers, scientific notation, mathematicians
  • Geometry: congruence, similarity, nomenclature of lines, angles, shapes, solids, measurement, theorems 
  •  Application: story problems, measurement, estimation, graphs, patterning, rounding, money concepts

Saturday, September 5, 2015

The Fourth Great Lesson: The Story of Writing

The Fourth Great Lesson is the Story of Writing, sometimes called Communication in Signs. In this lesson, the story of the development of the written alphabet is told, with an emphasis on the incredible ability that humans have of committing their thoughts to paper. Included in the story are pictographs, symbols, hieroglyphs, early alphabets, and the invention of the printing press. (See photo: ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics)  

This lesson leads to the study of:
  • Reading: literature, poetry, non-fiction, myths and folk tales, authors, reading comprehension, reading analysis, literary terms
  •  Writing: elements of style, function, voice, composition, letter writing, research, study skills
  •  Language: origins of spoken language, foreign languages, history of languages, speech, drama
  • Structure: alphabets, bookmaking, grammar, punctuation, sentence analysis, word study, figures of speech