Dear Sugar Maple Families,
Welcome to the Sugar Maple Community 2016! …And welcome back to the returning families! Vanessa and I are excited for another new school year to begin! The first week of school has been wonderful, we are so excited to see how the children of the Sugar Maple class become a Community. What a fun transformation to watch! We wanted to send a quick note about some general information about our classroom. However, please don’t hesitate to reach out with questions at any time.
School Day: We will begin our day with a three-hour work period from 8-11. During this time snack will be available and the children until about 10:30. From 11-11:30 the children will join together for “line-time” where we will sing, move, play games and have special presentations. Each year the three classrooms rotate outside times, we have landed the last block of 11:30. This is truly ideal as there is a stressed importance in the uninterrupted three-hour work period in the Montessori Classroom.
Goodbyes: The first few weeks of school may be difficult for your child to separate from you, especially if CDM is a new environment. Please understand that this is normal for some children and long good-byes at the classroom door tend to add to their anxiety. It is best to say goodbye, give a hug and a kiss and then let one of the teachers welcome your child into the classroom. Children usually stop crying before the parent even gets to their car. However, if you find a certain tactic works well for you child we will certainly work together to make the transition as tearless as possible. Realizing that in the first few weeks your child may need an extra hug or two, however, after your child feels comfortable it is best to enter quietly as to not interrupt the other children working in the classroom.
Conferences: We will be holding conferences twice a year. We believe our first round will be held in October, we will post a sign-up sheet outside the Sugar Maple community. Please fill in your name in a time slot that works for you. If you are unavailable at the offered times, please reach out and we can work together to find a time to meet.
Show and Tell: We invite your child to bring in a show and tell any day of the week. We only ask that toys remain at home. This is such an excellent time for your child to practice speaking to a group about items that are special to them. Items from nature, a trip, photos, art/craft they have created and trophies are often shared.
Birthdays: We will celebrate each child’s birthday on his/her special day or as close to the day as we can. Summer birthdays will be celebrated on half birthdays. We sing and celebrate each child at line time. We will send home a long piece of paper that can be used to put photos on that mark each year of your child’s life and to share any other momentous occasions in their lives. Parents are also welcome to join the celebration and help your child share their timeline with their friend’s … reminder line time will begin just after 11:00am! If desired, you may bring in 20 commercially prepared (peanut free) snacks.
Supplies Needed: We will post supplies needed on small pieces of paper on our message board outside the classroom. We will often be in need of things like pickles and crackers that will be used in food preparation works in our Practical Life area. We will ask for items for special seasonal works/projects in our room throughout the year as well. Another item we will hang is “laundry”, if you are interested in helping clean the laundry produced in our classroom we are very appreciative of that effort as well! Simply take the piece of paper and return the item as soon as possible. Please keep in mind we have allergies in our room, so please check the labels on food products you bring in! We thank you in advance for your generous donations!
Parent Involvement: We will need parents to volunteer their time in many ways throughout the year. We invite you to come in and speak about your profession or hobby, items and photos from a vacation or visit to another country, special family traditions etc. with the class. We would love to have you. Please contact Vanessa or myself to arrange a time to share your experiences with us.
Folders: Every child will have a green folder that will be used to keep works that need to be finished as well as finished works to take home. The inside pockets will be labeled “working” or “home”. Please feel free to check the folders at pickup to take home your child’s “home” works. Do not feel concerned that your child may not have finished or working items in their folders. In the beginning, many activities your child will be doing during the day will not have a tangible take home value, however, I assure you he or she will be busy and growing in many other ways!
Health and Safety in our Classroom: We want to point out that we do have a child with a nut allergy in our classroom, and will be we asking our friends to wash their hands upon entering our classroom. Our wish is to keep our friends safe and healthy and feel this will reduce any possibility of contamination. It is also important to make sure that snacks that are brought into the classroom are made in a facility that is nut free. Our friend Evan and his family have been working through this summer learning how to adjust with life with diabetes. An, Evan’s mom, read a book to the class and Evan brought his special bear “Rufus” in to show us how he gets his injections and showed them how he checks the glucose levels. If you come to observe, you may notice An in the classroom with Evan. As we all work to understand what living with diabetes means for Evan she will help Vanessa and I to make sure Evan is safe and healthy. We have noticed quite a few runny noses even in the first week. We will incorporate the usage of tissues, how to dispose of them, hand washing and how to cough/sneeze into our arm into a group lesson at line time next week! Hopefully we can work together to help the children in our classroom to spread love, not germs. :)
I have prep-time at CDM from 11:30-12:00 and from 2:30-3:00, so would be available for a phone call or a quick chat. I am also available by e-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org. Please let us know if you have any questions or concerns throughout the year. We love to help when possible!
We have already thoroughly enjoyed meeting you and your beautiful children and are so grateful to have them in our class!
~Alyssa and Vanessa
"Under the urge of nature and according to the laws of development, thought not understood by the adult, the child is obliged to be serious about two fundamental things…the first is the love of activity…The second fundamental thing is independence." ~ Maria Montessori