Primary ADM is MARCHing into Spring!
Greeting Primary All Day Montessori Families! In February we started to discuss how important is it to take care of each other, so at the end of the month and the beginning of March, two new works were introduced: ‘Lets Stick Together’ peace material and letter writing work. First, we read many books about how being […]
Greeting Primary All Day Montessori Families! In February we started to discuss how important is it to take care of each other, so at the end of the month and the beginning of March, two new works were introduced: ‘Lets Stick Together’ peace material and letter writing work. First, we read many books about how being apart of a community and working together can make us stronger. This was followed by the lesson with sticks – showing how a single stick on its own can easily break, but when sticks are bound together, they are strong! We tied our sticks with a blue ribbon – representing peace – and we brainstormed some words to trace that reflected how we take care of each other such as caring and help.
In addition to the Stick presentation and work, we have introduced Letter Writing! The children who have been practicing writing on paper have delighted in the opportunity to write letters to their classmates and teachers. This work includes a lesson on how to format a letter, how to craft a message to a friend, and how to address an envelope. Just as we adults miss seeing friends outside of work, the children are really longing for the future when they can spend time together outside of school. Sending letters to one another is a fun way to stay connected safely. Plus it offers an opportunity to practice handwriting, spelling, reading, and introduces new practical skills! Be on the lookout for green envelopes in the mail.
Recently we have begun fostering peace and community in our class through an intentional approach to supporting the children in conflict resolution. We have begun to approach conflicts between the children using the technique of “gentling the violence”. It’s a very simple process that seeks to minimize input and direction from the adult as a means of developing conflict resolution skills in children. When a conflict or issue occurs, the adult will bring the two children together and gently place a hand on each child’s shoulder- with their consent- and facilitate a conversation. First the adult will say, “What would you like to say?” The first child that speaks is given the time and the other child is encouraged to wait and listen. After the first child is done speaking, the adult will say to the first child, “Is there anything else you would like to say?” This repeats until the child answers no. Then the adult turns to the second child and poses the same initial question (“What would you like to say?”). Just as before, the child is given the time to speak and prompted by the adult in the same way: “Is there anything else you would like to say?” This continues until each child has nothing more to say. At this point, the adult will say, “What should we do now?” and the children will suggest solutions or next steps. Often they choose to move on or to apologize. The hope is that with continued practice the children will internalize the process of speaking and listening until they each feel satisfied then deciding together how to move forward.
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