GTMS Life > Blog May 5, 2022

TADM April 2022

Art and Music in the Montessori environment “The human hand, so delicate and so complicated, not only allows the mind to reveal itself but it enables the whole being to enter into special relationships with its environment… man ‘takes possession of his environment with his hands.’ His hands, under the guidance of his intellect transform […]

Art and Music in the Montessori environment

“The human hand, so delicate and so complicated, not only allows the mind to reveal itself but it enables the whole being to enter into special relationships with its environment… man ‘takes possession of his environment with his hands.’ His hands, under the guidance of his intellect transform this environment and thus enable him to fulfill his mission in the world.”
—Maria Montessori, The Discovery of the Child

Art is one of the many ways children express themselves. It is a way for them to communicate their feelings and develop their fine motor skills. In the Montessori environment, we provide open-ended art activities that help children explore and use their creativity. The emphasis is on the process, not the product. Often times the child offers their finished work as a gift because they are not interested in the product, rather its the process that brings them satisfaction and inner joy.

Ideas for art activities at home:

  • Make connections to literature, season, holidays, etc.
  • Artist of the month: choose an artist then explore their artwork together, you may even print and hang them around your child’s art space for inspiration
  • Explore a local art museum
  • Talk about the mood the art evokes, the colors used, and give art vocabulary (Cubism, Impressionism, abstract, background, palette, statue, etc.)

Teacher Naoki shared their loom to show how to weave a tapestry. Then, using cardboard from a cereal box they created individual looms for children who were interested in creating their own weaving.

“Music gives a soul to the universe, wings to the mind, flight to the imagination, and life to everything.” –Plato

Children have an uninhibited inclination to move, dance, and make music, as well as an innate capacity to appreciate all types of music. Research shows that music is fundamental in early childhood education, helping children to develop in various ways, including problem-solving and logic skills. Language acquisition is enhanced as children learn songs with varied vocabulary, meter, and rhyme. It also gives children opportunities to perfect their movements and refine their coordination.

Ideas for music activities at home:

  • Let your child explore percussion instruments: shakers, drums, and tambourines
  • Read books about the lives of musicians and composers
  • Exposure to different music styles (during our afternoon work cycle we listen to soft instrumental music from around the world and of different genres) Here are some of our favorites: Bossa Nova, Jazz, Japan

In our classroom we have been exploring the sounds different instruments make and even got to listen to Ms. Hanna share her violin with us. She named the parts of the violin and played different scales. One child exclaimed, “That was a beautiful song, thank you for playing it for us!” In the coming weeks we will be listening to Camille Saint-Saens’ The Carnival of the Animals as an introduction to classical music. We will listen and name various instruments, explore how fast or slow a song sounds, and identify the featured animal of each song.

Books we have enjoyed using to explore music:

  • This Jazz Man by Karen Ehrhardt, link is to the song we use at circle when reading the book
  • Play this Book by Jessica Young
  • Jazz Baby by Lisa Wheeler

Spring has sprung!

At circle we have been discussing the signs of spring- flowers blooming, birds gathering materials to build a nest, baby animals, etc. The children began showing a lot of interest in birds so we have been listening to different bird calls, naming various birds and reading books to learn more about specific birds.

Spring and Bird books:

  • Little Blue Truck’s Springtime
  • Feathers for Lunch by Lois Ehlert
  • Waiting for Wings by Lois Ehlert
  • Jennie Jenkins by John Feierabend, link is to the song we listen to along with the book

Dates to remember:
May 6 Grandparents and Special Friends Day
May 20 Greene Towne Montessori Annual Auction
May 27 Professional Development (all GTMS dismissal @ 11:45)
May 30 No School- Memorial Day

Please enjoy the following pictures we have captured of your children working independently this past month

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