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Montessori Lessons, Ideas and More…

Spring into Reading, Writing and Other Expressions

Good language skills are important for children, both for learning and for self-expression.  Children are especially receptive to language-related learning during what’s called the “sensitive period of language” between birth and about six years old.  (For more on this subject, please see: )

Take advantage of this absorbent period of your students’ lives with lots of time in conversation and reading aloud.

Poetry has interesting rhythms and repetitions to engage and enchant young listeners.  Look for poetry books in your local library, or get started with some spring-themed poetry here:

For more read-aloud fun, look through these suggestions of spring-themed books.

Combine reading and writing practice in a non-traditional way with Nan Barchowsky’s “Make Your Own Illustrated Favorite Foods and Recipes Notebook”.


For another educational “twist”, consider these biography projects that aren’t traditional informational narratives, in “It’s Time to Think Outside the Book and Kindle, Too! from

Additional new resources to look at include:  Link to Institution Awards   LInk to Young Readers’ Choice Awards


On a related subject, check out these non-traditional book report ideas which give students options in how they share their impressions of the books they read.

Have some fun making books with the children in your life.  For details, see

Anytime is a good time to reinforce children’s interest and proficiency in language skills, so why not try something new today?!

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Creative Music and Art Spring Lesson Planning

Spring is literally days away, so take a moment now, to look through your upcoming lesson plans for the months ahead.   Do some of your art and music lessons seem stale?  If so, read below.  Even if you think you have everything perfectly planned, you will want to peruse the following resources.  You may just find some unique ideas or resources that you might want to use this springtime.

 Music and Dance Resources

Have you thought about teaching dance to your toddler and preschool age children?  If you experience trepidation at the thought of doing this, fear no more!!  Gari Stein will fearlessly take you through the steps needed to feel confident while making the dance presentations.   In no time at all, you will be confident in teaching your students dance steps for May Day and other springtime celebrations. .  See “What? Me Teach Dance?”  to get started today.

May Day Related Dance and Music Resources May Day Traditions and Customs in England May Day Dance Lesson Ideas Preschool – Grade 5

More Montessori Spring-Themed Music Lesson Planning Ideas

Spring Song

Signs of Spring

Sounds of Spring

The Seed Story Play

Music Discovery Tables for Kids

Beethoven’s Wig 4: Dance Along Symphonies


Each of the Beethoven’s Wig CDs has featured a new twist and Beethoven’s Wig 4: Dance Along Symphonies is no exception, as it celebrates classical music for dance. Included are pieces written for the two-step, ballet, waltz, polka, minuet, rondeau, habenera and march. Creator-lyricist Richard Perlmutter has widened his focus on the classics to include such notable composers as Scott Joplin and John Philip Sousa along with favorites like Bach, Tchaikovsky and Strauss.

Best Loved Stories in Song and Dance

Baby Ballet

A wonderful introduction for children to the world of ballet, designed for ages four through six. Complete barre and center work. All tracks have repeats. Plies, Tendus, Coupe Passe, Grand Battement, Port De Bras, Saute, Spring Points, Chasse and more.


New!  Season Sings

Winter, Spring, Summer, Fall -30 active songs from Hat & Jacket, Pants & Boots to Jump in Puddles, Spring Flowers, 10 Little Goblins. All fun and developmentally appropriate for early childhood teachers & kids! 29 songs

GO GREEN! Integrated Action/Music/Literature Activities

Download free French, Spanish, German, Italian and
Chinese songs with translations

Art Resources

Draw some life into your springtime cart lesson planning projects

Your first stop should be to Excellence in Education.

EIE Art Supplies


Crafts Kits and Supplies

Springtime and Holiday Art Lesson Planning Resources

 With Mother’s Day and summer camp just around the corner, it’s time to think of some fun group craft projects.  Bountiful Spinweave offers pootholder looms, backstrap looms, and knitting kits etc.    See


Flower Activity

Color Theory

Studying Artists and their Works in the Montessori Classroom

Mondrian Art

Crayon Resist Projects

Flower Themes, Flowers in Art Picture-A-Day and Time Lapse Photography Ideas

Easter and Springtime Activities

Montessori Easter Activities

Making Grass-Eggshell People

Marble Design Paper

Nature Art

Looking for some additional interdisciplinary spring themed lesson planning ideas? Please see Spring into Reading, Writing and Other Expressions.

Heidi Anne Spietz

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Upcoming Southern California Kite Events

I am reposting this, courtesy of Glen Rothstein.

For lesson planning information about kite flying, please see

>>Hi Gang.

Even when it rains, you can still fly a kite (indoors) or read about upcoming events. Here’s a few if you’re interested:

Mother Nature is putting a damper on the 66th Annual Ocean Beach Kite Festival, however, it has been rescheduled to Saturday, May 10th.

Next weekend, March 8th & 9th is Huntington Beach’s Kite Party 12. I understand the “in-field” reservations are full, however there is a standby list. –

The 40th Annual Festival of the Kite in Redondo Beach is that Sunday as well. Here’s a note from the shop owner, Tom:

This year will make the 40th annual Festival of the Kite, Sunday March 9th, we’ll have live music, Martial arts demonstrations, A regional yo-yo competition, performance by Dance one of Redondo Beach, Hot dog on a stick eating contest with a $200 prize for the winner, prizes for the Highest flying kite, best handmade kite, the youngest kite flyer of the day, and the youngest at heart, there will be music pumped to the beach, and we’ll have something going on throughout the day on the Pier and south of the Pier on the beach, noon to 4PM, this will be our biggest event ever, free and open to everyone.

Thanks, Tom Fine

Sunshine Kite Company

110 Fisherman’s Wharf

Redondo Beach, California

The San Diego Kite Club has a few additional events in March as follows:

Saturday, 3/22 – Up in the Air 2014 – Mission Viejo – Norman P. Murray Community Center. This event continues to gain momentum each year.

Friday, 3/28 – Indoor Fly – Alliant University Gymnasium, off Pomerado Road, near I-15. I am so pleased to see an indoor event “down here”. The Club is sharing the facility with a model airplane club. There will be a small fee per flier and trust me, it will be well worth it. I’m heading down for this and you should too!

Saturday, 4/12 – Fan for Life – Join the Club as they once again, build kites with the kiddies and support this great cause.

More info on these events at

Speaking of April and National Kite Month, we have a total of 3 events happening on Sunday, 4/13.

The 3rd Annual Otis Kite Festival brings Artisans from near and far to share their designs with the youth groups that Otis College of Art and Design works with. On hand with be the likes of Tom Van Zant, George Peters, Melanie Walker, Tyrus Wong, Jose Sainz, Ali Fujino, Ron Gibian and Bobby Stanfield. Truly a world class show. This will be on the beach, North of the Santa Monica Pier. – (310) 846-2617

Rolling up the coast a bit in Santa Barbara will be the 29th Annual Santa Barbara Kite Festival. –

Continuing up the 101 will have some of us at the 5th Annual Santa Maria Valley Discovery Museum’s Family Fun Fly. –

I’ll update you on Morro Bay shortly.

IF you have an event for NKM, be sure to register it at

Fly safe and stay comfy.

Best Wishes and Winds,


Glen E. Rothstein – Director – Region 12
American Kitefliers Association<&lt;

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