Showing posts from November, 2013

November Tot School - Orange and Brown (with some Fall inspiration!)

*LINKING UP TO TOT SCHOOL GATHERING PLACE AT 1+1+1* *LINKING UP TO MONTESSORI MONDAY AT LIVING MONTESSORI NOW* Well, I am finally getting around to posting about our Brown/Orange weeks!  Since I didn't have as large a variety in the two colors, I decided it would be ideal to combine them. Add to that the season change, and Fall fit right in with the colors! It worked out to just devote the entire month of November to the brown/orange theme with some Fall inspiration. I also wanted to keep it simple because it turned out to be a very busy month! Due to that, I only started with three main trays/activities to see if 'less was better' with Buddy Boy. Without further ado, here are the trays: The first one was oh, so simple: A basket of brown and orange Unifix blocks :) The second was a small puzzle that I found at the Dollar Tree in a 3 pack. This one just so happened to be a brown and orange monkey. He also had a  brown / orange /Fall senso

What I Learned From My Montessori School Experience

All the posts I have done in my Montessori Experience series have been leading up to this one - What I Learned From My Montessori Experience THE CLASSROOM The classroom must, MUST meet my needs. A great piece of advice that the primary teacher gave me was this: "Do what works for YOU - not necessarily what works in the classroom here." As profoundly simple as that sounds, it's so easy to compare your own personal surroundings to those that you have seen, both in a classroom and in other homeschool rooms! This is also possibly the worst mistake you can make. You see - what works for a mother of 2 children, ages 3 and 5, isn't going to work for a mother of 5 or 6 children, especially those who span all grade levels! While it may be possible for that mother of 2 young children to fill her shelves with every practical life and sensory work possible, that's impossible for a mother who must share her shelves with all grades. While some have entire rooms

My Experience At A Montessori School - Upper Elementary

Last, but not least, is the Upper Elementary Classroom. The Upper Elementary class usually goes from ages 9-12, 4th grade - 6th grade.  THE UPPER ELEMENTARY CLASSROOM photo credit -  White Rock Montessori My first look at the U.E. class was interesting - a couch. There was a couch in the classroom. Not something that is shocking to a Montessori teacher, maybe, or a homeschooler in general, but very different from the average public school.  The comfort level was apparent, and very homey.  There were some similarities to a public school classroom, though -  a few full size school desks and tables in the classroom, surrounded by the materials needed for U.E. and LOTS of books! There is only one U.E. teacher in the school here, but the class size is small - probably only around 15 students, give or take a couple.  I got my first look at the decimal board and decimal checkerboard here, as well as the advanced fraction materials.  I also had the curriculum explained to me a

A New Place To Find Me :)

I wanted to announce real quick that there is a new place to find me! :) Although my homeschool blog may be a little bit more active from time to time, depending on what's going on that week, you can now also find me blogging here :  A Higher Calling . Occasionally, my brain hashes out different things I think about as a mother and wife - both deep and sometimes, just something so light and fun as maybe a new recipe or craft, or just something the kids or my husband I did that was enjoying and helped us as a family! Although homeschooling has so many facets, I didn't want to blow up this blog too much, so I thought I would just have two! I would love to have you find me over there from time to time, seeing what may be going on in our life outside  of homeschooling! 

My Veteran Through The Years

I just have to take the time to pay a special tribute to my favorite veteran - my husband - through the years :) Graduation from Basic Training (I was in my senior year of high school!) Tech School (I was at home base, preparing for our wedding!) The day of our wedding  (11 years ago this December 14th) TDY trip (usually these were two week trips where he had to go work at another base in the US, while I stayed home :(   ) Graduation from Airman Leadership School (after weeks and weeks of looooong hours of study, in which I had to help him learn about aircraft that I had NO clue the first thing about!) F-15 flight (an incentive offered to everyone when the schedule alloted for it) The day he pinned on SSgt stripes (staff sergeant - I just had to take a picture!) Hoss' first haircut (shows that some days, the uniform just stays on - it's a part of him!) A great Daddy who has children that LOVE him!

My Experience At A Montessori School - Lower Elementary

My time spent in the Lower Elementary classroom has been extremely necessary this year. I have visited the school three times, and each time, I spent time in the lower elementary. During my first two visits, I was in all three classrooms and the time in L.E. was spent checking out the shelves, seeing the placement choices of where materials were and how the organization was. I also tried my best to see what, if anything, I didn't know about yet - much more the first time than the second, and trying to watch the children when possible. I will say, though, the children at this age were not my main focus for the first two trips. If you have read my post on  The Romance of Montessori , you will know that my third trip was ALL about the lower elementary classroom and observing the children in the environment. *Interesting information for you to think about - on one of my visits, the U.E. (upper elementary) teacher just happened to be in the L.E. class for a moment. She was able to t

School day outtakes

I thought I'd share a few quick pictures taken here and there over the last couple of weeks. Bug decided it would be a lot of fun to bring all three knobless cylinder blocks from the shelves to her mat and mix them all up. She repeated this several times before putting the work away, which was delightful to me. If you read my post on  my observances in a Montessori Primary classroom , my Bug qualifies as 'a newbie'. She has not yet reached normalization, so her concentration and independence levels are very low. She either, (1) wants to work *thisclose* to me, and have me work with her always , or she drifts away and does something totally NOT school related - like playing chase with Buddy Boy. Any focused work is a good sign on her part!  I'm fixing to shock some of you. Little Mama is 9, and therefore falls in to the Upper Elementary year 1 - but she's doing multiplication with the multiplication board (a lower elementary work). The method used

My Experience At A Montessori School - Primary

I'm going to do a small series on my experiences at the local Montessori school in my city. If you live anywhere close by a Montessori school, and you are homeschooling with the Montessori method, my best suggestion to you would be to try your best to have a tour of the school, and inquire as to whether you would be allowed to observe the classroom(s) at all. I can honestly say that being able to talk 1-1 with the teachers and observe in these classrooms has been some of the most important learning experiences for ME as I began my Montessori teaching journey. The first time I went to visit, my main focus was on watching the primary class. At the time, I didn't think I would be completely changing the way I taught - I just wanted to find something for my little ones to do while the older child were doing their school work. I'm going to share a little about the environment, the children, and the teacher. THE MONTESSORI  PRIMARY CLASSROOM photo credit -  Peaceful P