February Newsletter 2021
In January the preschool was an extremely quiet place - probably quite unlike your homes.
We hope all the children were able to enjoy the work sheets and arts and crafts projects which we sent them so they could at least work on the topic ‘snow’ at home. Thank you for your feed-back, Nadine, Henny, Anie, Kelly, Nadja, Nuran and Stefan.
We were so pleased when it did actually snow because it made the whole topic more real.
Our second theme ‘dinosaurs’ is one that simply needs to be done at preschool. Therefore we shall keep it for a later date.
Normally in February we would have two major topics: Valentine’s Day and ‘Fasching’ (Carnival).Unfortunately this year they lie fairly close to each other and very close to the maybe re-opening of the preschool. As a matter of fact Mary’s most favourite topic “Valentines” will definitely be over. She is really devastated about this. Therefore we shall send you a few hearty art projects via email which you can print out if you like (art projects via post are fairly pricey).
Should preschools reopen we shall have a small ‘Carnival-party on Tuesday, February 16 th and we look forward to seeing wonderfully dressed up children.
The Senatsverwaltung will let us know as soon as possible when preschools can reopen.
We wish you all a hearty and healthy February,
Your Montessori team
January Newsletter 2021
We wish you all a happy and healthy new year and hope you had an enjoyable, quiet holiday season. Thank you once again for all the wonderful Christmas presents you and the children gave us. They were greatly appreciated.
Now to another Corona year:
I’m afraid I don’t know yet whether the lockdown for preschools will be longer than January 10 th . From Tomorrow on the “Notbetreuung” will be
from 8.00 – 13.00 pm. Please let us know whether you need “Notbetreuung” as we have to plan meals and staff.
Looking out of the window and seeing the snow lying so beautifully around inspires me to suggest “Winter” as our January theme followed by one of our favourite topics when preschool goes back to normal again “dinosaurs”.
Snowflakes will figure largely in art activities as will white paint. As science projects we shall fill a container with water and leave it outside for a few days to observe what happens to it, and we shall melt some snow to see how clean it really is.
Hopefully it will snow the lovely kind of snow where you can actually see each beautiful snowflake so we can go out with a magnifying glass to look at them more closely.
When move on to “Dinosaurs” we shall talk about meat eating and plant eating dinosaurs, about dinosaurs that could fly, swim or only move on land, how they lived and what means of defence they had and why they are not alive anymore. This theme is normally very much enjoyed by the children and will probably last longer than just one month. Should your children own any dinosaurs or dinosaur books please let them bring them to preschool for us all to appreciate.
Your Montessori team
December Newsletter 2020
With great leaps and bounds the end of this absolutely crazy year 2020 has arrived.
We were so sad that our traditional lantern walk had to be cancelled and only hope that in 2021 we won’t have to miss out on the fun of walking through the streets with our beautiful lanterns, bringing joy to onlookers and our nice chats around the bonfire, eating sausages and drinking “Glühwein”.
Thanksgiving was celebrated a little at the preschool this year. We talked about the Pilgrims and Native Americans, turkeys, harvest and giving thanks. The big Thanksgiving feast with turkey, mash potatoes, corn, cranberry sauce and pumpkin pie was delicious and all of the children enjoyed it (naturally the vegetarians didn’t eat turkey). A big “THANK YOU!” to Kate for the best pumpkin pies ever.
December is the month that is not long enough. There is so much to do before the holidays start that it can be a month of stress as well as fun. The children become increasingly excited as the month progresses. We will be busy decorating our room for the festive season and making little surprises.
As originally planned, our Christmas party will take place on Friday, December 18 th - unfortunately this year without parent participation. The Play will begin at 9:30a.m. After the play we shall offer a small snack and then busy ourselves with baking Christmas cookies and artwork. At approximately 11.30a.m. we shall take a breath of fresh air and go out to the playground. Lunch will be at 12.30 followed by joyful carol singing.
Preschool will start at 9.00a.m. and end at 2.00 p.m. on that day.
The Christmas holidays start on December 22 nd (last day of preschool) . We look forward to greeting you again on January 4 th , parents well-rested and children happy and eager to start the new year working, playing and learning with us.
Have a happy festive season and stay healthy!
Your Montessori team____________________________________________________________________________________________________________
November Newsletter 2020
Although the Halloween party with those wonderfully dressed up children was very different to our previous Halloween parties, it was also very nice, as we could only concentrate on the children and their wishes. We offered art projects to begin with. Then games and fun in the big hall, followed by “Trick or Treat” in the building and finally lunch.
In November we shall have two main topics: St. Martin’s Day and Thanksgiving.
In preparation of St. Martin’s day we shall talk about why we celebrate November 11 th with a lantern parade and why so many Germans eat geese on this special day.
At the Halloween party one of the art projects was to make a lantern for our lantern walk. Due to Covid regulations the “Daks” has recommended to cancel lantern parades which we shall do. So on November 6th there will be preschool as usual, but the children may take home their lanterns and you could walk the streets as a family.
In the second half of the month we shall talk about Thanksgiving and I am sure the children will be able to think of many things for which they are thankful. Naturally we shall also talk about Pilgrims and Native Americans, the harvest and turkeys. In the nearby woods we might build a tipi depending on the weather.
Our cooking project of the month will be the making of popcorn in the way the Native Americans taught the Pilgrim children.
We shall celebrate Thanksgiving on Thursday the 26 th . I have not ordered food for that day as we shall cook a turkey, mashed potatoes, corn and pumpkin pie (the real traditional meal)
In role play the children will have the opportunity to play with the Playmobil fort and weaving and modelling with clay will also be projects of the month.
November 19th the photographer will be coming at 9.30 a.m. so please be punctual on that Thursday.
As St. Martin’s day is a German celebration, we shall sing more German songs in the first half of the month. For Thanksgiving the children will learn more English songs.
Your Montessori Team
October Newsletter 2020
Autumn has finally arrived and Nature is beginning to show itself from a most beautiful side. We often have fine weather in October and go on walks whenever we can. Finding chestnuts and acorns gives us the chance to do lots of sorting and counting activities and we look at the shapes of the leaves and learn their names. Leaves are everywhere. The time for collecting red, yellow and brown leaves and making autumn collages with interesting pieces of nature the nearby forest has to offer, has begun!
In keeping with the season we will be talking about hibernation of squirrels, hedgehogs and other animals and about the birds that prefer living in warmer climates during winter.
The colours that will dominate the artwork will be orange, brown and yellow but will change into orange and black, the closer we get to Halloween. Towards the middle of the month we shall be busy making ghosts, bats, spiders and jack-o-lanterns. We shall draw them, trace them, cut them out etc.
Friday, October 9th we shall have an “Oktober Fest” at the preschool. Should your child/children own a Dirndl or Lederhosen, a chequered blouse or shirt, an apron or anything Bavarian looking please let them wear that on Thursday. We shall listen to Bavarian music and cook Weißwürste and eat pretzels.
On Wednesday, October 28 th we shall go to the “new playground” to find pumpkins. This is normally an exciting field trip for the children, as they always have great fun looking for the pumpkins in the fields. The joy in their faces when they have been successful is a pleasure to see.
The cooking project this month will be pumpkin soup after we have carved a Jack-o-lantern out of a biggish pumpkin.
As discussed at the parent evening, our Halloween party will be on Friday, October 30 th .
The preschool will be open on that day from 9.00 – 14.00. .
We will not have a certain topic. The children can come dressed up as they like - preferably spooky. We shall offer spooky artwork and spooky kind of games. At 1.30 p.m. we shall go on our trick-or-treat-tour around the building.
As the weather in autumn can also be quite nasty please remember that we will go out every day, may it be windy, cold or rainy, so please dress your children accordingly.
A warm welcome to Mila and her family.
During our ‚nature month‘ we look forward to beautiful walks in our neighbourhood and many projects with leaves, acorns, chestnuts, beechnuts and berries and two wonderful small parties (Oktober Fest & Halloween).
Have a happy October!
Your Montessori team
_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________ September Newsletter 2020
In August our topic was “The Seaside”.
We created a large mural in the hall, talked about creatures that live at the beach, what we can do at the beach, what we can find on a beach etc.. The children particularly enjoyed adding and subtracting with the help of shells and pairing shells.
Now to September:
The topics this month are “sunflowers” and “apples”.
The first theme involves the drawing of sunflowers, tracing and cutting them out, handprint sunflowers and sunflower collages.
We shall talk about what you can make out of sunflowers and taste some sunflower seeds and – bread at circle time.
The second theme will also involve drawing, tracing and cutting out. In the previous years we went apple picking in Annie’s garden, but due to Corona we shall give it a skip this year.
Thank you Nadine for all the delicious apples you sent in. The children enjoy them immensely.
Lucy, the music teacher, will also involve apple songs into her lessons (Tuesdays 10:00-10:45) as are we at circle time.
As a cooking project we plan to make apple sauce or apple cake– lots of hand/eye co-ordination is involved in the chopping and fine motor skills are strengthened.
We look forward to a busy, warm September, during which we can spend lots of time out- doors in our atrium garden.
Your Montessori team
August Newsletter 2020
It is the start of a new school year and we hope you all enjoyed your summer holidays.
A big welcome to our newcomers: Lilly; Lia, Maya, Caspar and Emilia and our oldies Leo, Maxi, Jeremy, Theo, Caspar F., Romy, Lina, Fenja, Lina, Oskar, Amanda, Nelefine, Mika, Levi, Akshaya, Milan and to you all!
Lisa has also returned back to preschool after her maternity leave. So now we are full staffed and have a wonderful child – teacher ratio (22:5)
August is the settling-in month for our newcomers, the month in which the children get to know each other and routines are established. A lot of time is spent working individually with children, showing them how the materials are used.
Unfortunately Covid 19 is still with us, which may make the “Eingewöhnung” a little trickier for the new families.
Up to now, the new parents were asked to sit in the entrance hall whilst their children got to know the routines. As only one family at a time is allowed in this area (the other families need to wait outside until the former family leaves), we shall ask the “Eingewöhnungs parent” to sit in the community hall. As it is also much larger, more than one parent could stay there.
Parents are required to wear face masks in the entrance area and leave again as soon as possible, so that other families may enter.
Let’s hope that these will be the only restrictions we will have to cope with.
In August our monthly topic will be “The Seaside”. Maybe some of you have just returned from a beach and the children can share their holiday experiences with us – show us a shell or two or even a crab’s leg.
We shall create a large mural in the hall, talk about creatures that live at the beach, what we can do at the beach, what we can find on a beach etc.
As the weather forecast is really good, we shall spend a lot of time outside. The little lawn in the garden has just been mowed and a paddling pool will be set up.
Should your child have an extra bathing suit or bathing trunks, please send them in. If not, underwear will also be sufficient. Please also remember to put on sunscreen in the morning before preschool (but not in the hall, whilst other parents are waiting to come in).
The dentist and Croco will be coming on Monday, August 24 th at 10.00 a.m. to teach the children how to clean their teeth properly. She will not examine their teeth this time.
We look forward to a busy, warm August, during which we can spend lots of time out- doors in our atrium garden and to a happy new school year.
Your Montessori team
July Newsletter 2020
The preschool term of a hopefully most unique year is coming to an end.
After all the rather scary excitement about the Covid 19 virus we are almost back to a normal life at preschool.
We were pleased to have lots of children back and the children were happy and excited to play and work with their friends again.
On Wednesday we would be pleased if you and the siblings could join us for the end-of-the-term-party. We shall have normal preschool from 8.00 – 14.00 hours and then the party will begin.
We shall only offer coffee, tea, juice and cake this year. I have just had a look at the weather forecast with great dismay. Should it really rain on Wednesday we shall have the party in the big hall. Let’s keep our fingers crossed we won’t have to.
For all of you who will be leaving, we wish all the very best. Thank you for trusting us with your wonderful children. We will surely miss them and you.
For all of you who will be returning, the preschool will reopen on WEDNESDAY August 5 th and we look forward to a happy new term together.
Your Montessori Team
April Newsletter 2020
March was a really short preschool month this year due to the pandemic so unfortunately there is not much to write.
The month started so nicely and we busied ourselves with beautiful spring flowers. The children were able to name the most common ones and we had just got the preschool green for St. Patrick’s day when Corvid 19 hit us (in Berlin).
From the many lovely e-mails you wrote, I understand that most of you are very busy with school work and trying to occupy the children (next to your own home office). That must be extremely challenging. As you know I am rather old school and not a great friend of having children glued to a television, computer, laptop etc. and therefor have not really sent out web-sites where children can only sit and watch. I received the e-mail which you can read in the attachment. Maybe it would be a good entertainment for the little ones. I had a short look and thought: ”I don’t know whether parents want to do a lot of artwork with their little ones too.”
If you would like to present a virtual Montessori environment to your child, Vanina has highly recommended this App. (Mind you, you need to pay for it).
✳The app is inspired by Dr. Maria Montessori,
Jean Piaget and Seymour Papert (computer scientist who worked with a Jean Piaget in Switzerland)
✳You can subscribe only for a month to try it and cancel anytime.
It costs 25€ for 6 months but the first week is free.
✳In the platform (on the web-site) you have a dashboard with very well made concepts for all (known and unknown material in the classroom) which makes the child’s progress in different areas clear and visible.
✳️Also you can choose between 8 main languages (German is one of them)
✳️There’s Playtime restriction - so you can limit the daily usage of the application.
✳️You can limit your children’s access to certain sections of the app.
��the Chinese classroom
✳ You receive seasonal activities (every month)
Check the website for more information
Easter is on its way and I am extremely sad that all the eggs I have been blowing out for the past weeks will have to wait for next year. Should you have the energy, the old tradition of blowing out eggs and painting them for Easter is a nice and not expensive one.
Now mentioning money, it doesn’t seem fair, that you should be paying the extra costs (meals, sports and music), if you are not receiving the ‘goods’. Therefor you can skip the April payment if you wish. Should you continue to pay, we shall donate the money to the three parties (we don’t need a bankrupt caterer – we’re happy we have found a good one J)
We wish you all a happy Easter and a successful Easter egg hunt, but most of all
Your Montessori team
March Newsletter 2020
In March we shall start our plant theme. We shall talk about various spring flowers such as snowdrops, hyacinths and tulips. In the art room the children will have the opportunity to trace, cut out and glue to make many beautiful spring flowers which I am sure you will admire on the hall wall.
In the coming week we shall start to get our pre-school green.
We shall talk about Shaun the leprechaun who always comes to visit us on St. Patrick’s Day (March 17 th ). He likes to play tricks on us and maybe we will catch him this year. If not I’m sure we will find his pot of gold which will either be at the end of a rainbow or hidden under an old oak tree. We shall see what we can find.
On March 17 th each year, the Irish and Irish-Americans celebrate St. Patrick’s Day by the “wearin’ of the green”.
It would be nice if the children could also wear green on Tuesday 17 th .
This holiday commemorates St. Patrick who, legend tells us, went about Ireland as a missionary preaching and using the shamrock as an illustration of the Trinity. St Patrick also was credited for ridding Ireland of snakes. During the week we shall listen to Irish music and make lots of shamrock- and snake art.
The cooking project of the month will be shamrock shaped waffles.
After St. Patrick’s Day we shall continue our topic, spring flowers.
This month’s field trip will take us to the botanical gardens. The crocuses are already blooming (in my neighbour’s garden) and hopefully in two weeks time we can also admire tulips or daffodils everywhere. Details will follow.
On Thursday, March 12 th we shall have a parent evening at 8.00p.m. at the preschool. The main topics will be meals, measles, movement. Should you have any other topic in mind, please let me know.
Let’s hope for a happy month with many lovely Spring days,
Your Montessori Team
February Newsletter 2020
In January it seems we were the only ones this year to celebrate the “Chinese New Year ”. Due to the Corona Virus there were no celebrations in China. And as Cissie’s Dad came from China to celebrate with the family, Cissie, our only Chinese girl, wasn’t at preschool to celebrate with us - so we celebrated by ourselves. The children were very busy learning how to use chop sticks and making lanterns and cutting out rats to decorate the entrance hall. We also made a wonderful dragon for our dragon dance, which we practiced during the sports lesson.
Now to February:
Due to illness and holidays the group shrunk down to 5 children and two teachers! We spent the last week as a small happy family with plenty of time for individual work with the remaining children. Thank you for picking up your children a little earlier last week.
In February we have two major topics: Valentine’s Day and ‘Fasching’ (Carnival).
We have already started to trace out hearts and shall now continue to decorate hearts, make heart people, heart mobiles, ‘window-colour’ hearts and talk about Valentine’s Day. Naturally we have started to sing many love songs and have practiced a few Valentine poems.
The ‘Faschings-party’ will take place on Tuesday, February 25 th and we look forward to seeing wonderfully dressed up happy children. Maybe our “Chinese New Year” topic could be inspiring for an exquisite costume? Should your child not want to dress up – no problem; then we will only have a happy child that is not dressed up J.
The previous parties (Christmas and Halloween) in the large community hall have been with sibling and parent participation. The “Fasching party” is normally celebrated on a smaller scale and only in the Montessori rooms
The party-snack-list will be hanging on the door towards the end of the month.
A warm welcome to Levi and Milan and their families, who start (back) preschool this month.
We wish you all a hearty and healthy February
Your Montessori Team_____________________________________________________________________________________________________________