As part of the Normalization process and development of the classroom community and independence, the upper grades at Montessori School at Hampstead attend overnight trips at the beginning of each school year. Last week, the Upper Elementary students were at Camp Chandler in Wetumpka and the trip was a big success. Thank you to all who helped make it such a great growth opportunity for our students, faculty, and parents. You can read more about the trip and check out some photos of the students in action on our blog.
We have begun our third full week of school. Things are settling down and routines are coming alive. During the first several weeks of school, considerable energy is spent facilitating the safe space necessary for the children to find their footing and feel comfortable learning. If you are interested in learning more about this period known as the Montessori Normalization Period, you can read our blog post or talk to your child’s teacher. The Normalization Period is well worth the time and energy as it pays substantial dividends over the remainder of the year.
Each year, students from the upper grades attend an overnight trip with their classmates and teachers. The Montessori School at Hampstead’s Upper Elementary class (4th – 6th) recently attended an overnight trip to the Montgomery YMCA’s Camp Chandler. These trips are designed to create shared experiences and help build a cohesive classroom community capable of tackling the emotional, social, and academic growth that comes throughout the academic year.
I was fortunate enough to attend the Upper Elementary overnight trip to Camp Chandler. The YMCA staff on-site did an excellent job facilitating. They helped each student push his or her comfort zone and strengthened the bonds the students have been working to form through activities at school. Further, the staff made everyone feel welcome and respected the diversity of students that attended.
I was able to watch the students grow in just two short days at the camp. I saw new friendships develop right before my eyes. I saw community being...
We are creatures of routine and rhythm. We spend considerable mental energy working to anticipate the future or make our best guess as to how that future will affect us. As adults, the energy consumption tends to increase as we attempt to influence the future at deeper and deeper levels, typically with an eye toward minimizing personal tension and pain.
Trying to anticipate the future and our appreciation of rhythm and routine seem to be an inherent part of our humanity. When things change, it causes an imbalance and creates tension while we work to find equilibrium again. For children, those changes can be minor, such as changing the type of breakfast we eat in the morning, or they can be more significant as with the birth of a sibling.
The start of the school year represents a significant change to the way things have operated during the summer. Schedules change, meals change, time with parents and friends changes, and what constitutes fun changes. In a Montessori environment, the ti...