Thursday, 19 July 2012

Our Concert and Graduation Ceremony 2012

On June 13 we held our annual end of year concert and graduation.  Our concert consists of a series of songs that the children choose followed by a short graduation ceremony.  The songs are the songs we sing throughout the year.  The children are so happy to perform these songs for their families and sing them with an exhilarating combination of enthusiasm and happiness.

Before the concert begins, family members find seats in the gymnasium while the children gather in the foyer outside.  The children are so excited as they wait in the foyer for all of their classmates.

Gathering the children in the foyer.

Gathering the children in the foyer.

These lovely young ladies handed out the programs.  Don't they look beautiful!  T. (on the right) is one of our former graduates.  S. (on the left) is the sister of one of this year's graduates. 

When all of the children have arrived, we have a pep talk in the foyer and we are off to the stage!

Here we all are on the stage ready to begin.

This is what the children see when they look out.

The children are singing their English songs led by Mrs. P.

The children are singing their French songs led by Madame D.

After we have sung all of our songs, the graduates are asked to stay on the stage while their classmates go off to sit with their families.   {What is a Montessori graduate?  A graduate is a child who began their Montessori education between the ages of 2 1/2 and 4 years and has completed the Montessori casa (preschool) program.  Our graduates do not attend JK or SK programs.}

Here are the graduation caps.

Our graduates on stage.
 This year we had nine graduates. The majority of them will attend French Immersion programs.  We have known many of these children ever since they were babies and have known their families even longer.  As I stand up on the stage each year with the graduates, I find myself overcome by emotion.  I tell myself, 'I will not cry', yet every year the tears flow making it difficult to speak.  As I look out across the sea of parents and grandparents there are many who are also tearing up. It takes a village to raise a child and we are all part of that village.  We are just so proud of our graduates!

After our ceremony it is time to eat cake!

The graduation cake.

These are our graduates.  They are just so adorable!

As I look at our little graduates, I see children who are confident in their abilities, academically advanced and respectful towards others.  I know our little ones are ready to spread their wings and fly.  They will be very successful.  The future belongs to them.

After the concert, the parents and children mix and mingle.


It is such a beautiful evening and one that our Montessori community looks forward to.  At our little yellow school, our teachers, students and parents begin as strangers and become family.  Thank you to all of our students and their familes.  We are so very grateful for our precious time together.

Tuesday, 17 July 2012

The Sun ~ Part of Our Study of the Universe

In May, the children embarked on a study of the Universe.  Our study touched on the dramatic beginnings of the Universe and encompassed the formation of our galaxy, our sun and the planets.  It culminated with the first signs of life on our own planet.

The following passage about the beginnings of our sun is from the book Earth Story by Eric Madden.

One yellow star was special.  At first it was just a bulge in the middle of a whirling saucer of dust.  But as dust and gas swirled inward the bulge got bigger and bigger.

It began to get tighter and tighter, and hotter and hotter and hotter, until at last it was so hot that it burst into flames, flashed on its starlight and became our Sun.

Although our study incorporated all subject areas.  One of our favourite activities was making a sun.

Step 1:

Each child receives a circle cut from bristol board.  Three globs of paint - red, yellow, orange - are placed in the middle of the circle.

A piece of plastic wrap is placed over the circle and paint.

Each child then squishes the paint.  

Squishing the paint was so much fun and very clean!

A teacher removes the plastic wrap.  The circle is then left to dry.

Step 2:

The sun is then glued onto a piece of black construction paper.  The children are given star glitter to glue in the black depths of the universe.

A completed craft.

Step 1 of this craft was found on the internet.  Step 2 was our idea.  We used finger paint instead of normal paint.  This gave the completed suns a shiny and glowing appearance.  It was such a beautiful craft and one that the children thoroughly enjoyed.