In this top photo, Evangeline is practicing squeezing a sponge, by moving water from one bowl to another with the sponge. This is a classic "at the beginning" exercise. Sponges are in constant use in our environment, from the clean-up buckets to the paint trays, from the water-pouring works to food prep. At the beginning of their Montessori life, every child learns how to use a sponge.
- We have three brand new children, Cherry, Joey, and Eleanor, and two who joined us earlier in the summer, Evangeline and Logan, plus several beloved friends are no longer here. Relationships are in new beginnings, shifting, renewing, and awakening.
- The weather is changing too, the shadows and sunlight shifting, the chickadees coming back, the summer veggies finishing. We all sense that without a doubt we are at the beginning of a new season.
- Routines are beginning again - improved, reviewed, practiced - as we all explore how to live together more successfully and peacefully.
- Each child is at the beginning of some new learning or new ability, or a new urge to explore something that had seemed so challenging. All kinds of beginnings are happening!
So here is a set of photos for you, chosen out of so many possibilities, our new beginnings in practical life, art, sensorial, math, and language.
Eleanor is doing the sink-and-float work. She is our new youngest, and is revealing herself to be careful and competent. "I can do it myself." She has gotten sink-and-float out at least 3 times already - I need to change the objects!
Joey is exploring the pink tower, one of the first lessons we give every new child. All over the world, Montessori children are working with the pink tower, every day.
We have asked our "old timers" to hold off on their elaborate marble run creations using the pink tower and brown stair, so that our new kids have some good, simple modeling to witness.
We started the year with color mixing, using both colored water and paint as separate works. Logan is mixing colors with the dropper bottles of yellow, red, and blue. He just lit up as he saw the green and orange appear. All the kids love this bright and lovely activity.
Cara hasn't dived back into math yet; she's been busy doing various reading and writing works. Here she is reading longer, phonetic word cards. When she came to 'milkman,' she looked up puzzled, and asked, "what's a 'milkman'?" I laughed and told her about milkmen "in the old days," and then I threw the card away. It's an anachronism now.
And so these beginning days have flowed one to another, and as I write this, we are only 14 school days into the new year. " New life, new friends, new things to do...." And all of it happens, inside and outside, one day at a time.