Here it is, the final September catchup from the Big School. Where last but by no means least, is the news from our mixed age community First to Sixth Class.
As our most wide-ranging age mixed class, first to sixth is a lovely student community to observe and engage with. The Montessori method allows students to develop and engage at their own level and pace, with younger members being encouraged, inspired and aided by elder classmates. This is very evident in our eldest class grouping and the work they engage in is confirmation of the success of this collaboration.
The overarching topic of study for the senior class this month has been Water. Again as with all classes in the “big school” the topic study is used to inform and frame the national curriculum studies while the students learning is reinforced by the hands on experience with the Montessori materials available in class.
The students began by creating water anagrams as an exercise in english grammar and then went on to create a fantastic water cycle mural on the wall. Researching labels and definitions for the water cycle on various internet children’s science sites. These exercises allow the students to engage with english grammar on a multisensory level, ensuring they absorb the knowledge in a fun and creative manner. The use of internet for research is a vital skill for students and internet enabled computers, supervised by staff, are available in all classrooms.
Using arts and crafts, alongside computers, books and other resources opens the students minds to the variety of research methods and forms of expression that exist and can be utilised to communicate messages to the world. As a class group using multimedia, art, and I.T to convey their learning allows all students to showcase their talents and develop new methods through teamwork with their classmates.
Another benefit of the Montessori primary class structure is that it allows the learning and practical work to be student lead. On Tuesday 21st this was particularly inspirational when the students decided to measure the heavy rainfall that had been occurring. They created a temporary rainfall gauge and placed it in our patio area. From 9.30am – 10.30am they took record of 80ml of rainfall. The success of this experiment led them to create a more permanent instrument (pictured) and they are measuring rainfall over a period of a week to be recorded in their weather chart. I’m sure we’ll have the results of that in their next update.
To close out this post we thought we’d leave you with the students beautiful water themed paintings. Colourful and cheerful enough to shake off the long evening blues! 🙂
So with wise words from our school elders, Don’t Waste Water! we leave you for now, but expect more updates from them soon.
From all the staff and pupils of “the big school”