We learned a lot about fire safety this week. We had our first fire drill and a visit from the local firefighters! The firefighters had a fire safety discussion, showed the children how a firefighter looks dressed in his equipment (“you look like an alien…or a bumblebee”) and invited us to tour the fire truck. Of course everyone was given a fire chief hat as well. The fire visit was a great way to conclude our family/community unit and we were able to move onto our next unit: The Rainforest! We started the unit by splitting into groups and drawing everything we knew about the rainforests. We have some very colorful wall hangings that include many rainforest flowers, trees, and animals. We enjoyed reading “Take a Step Inside the Rainforest” and “The Parrot Tico Tango”.
We also continued in our Spanish lessons. The children are learning a great Spanish song about El Cuerpo (the body). They have also been working on the days of the week in Spanish. Zeanny does a wonderful job engaging them in the Spanish songs and finger plays and we are so grateful she is willing to volunteer her time.
Our Friday group read, “Zin, Zin, Zin a Violin!” and learned about the different instruments that make up an orchestra. We took some time looking at pictures of the instruments and listening to a music selection of each instrument.
Beyond that, work time has been busy. Number Rod addition was especially popular this week. As was the art area, the Practical Life pouring and stringing activities and the Color Tablet extensions.
A word about worksheets: you may notice some language and math worksheets coming home with your child this school year. As with all our materials, the children are invited, not forced, to complete worksheets. Sometimes the worksheets will be done with one of our Montessori materials (such as the Number Rod addition) and others are completed with a teacher or as a group. While worksheets are not the main focus of our curriculum, they still play an important part. My main goal with worksheets is to encourage fine motor skills. A child may understand a math concept or know how to spell a word with the movable alphabet, but they still need to be practicing writing the letters and numbers. We also want to familiarize the children with worksheets as they will probably be a part of their future education. Most importantly, the children really enjoy doing them. So, hang them on the refrigerator with pride!
Some pictures from previous weeks that haven’t been shared yet: