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Montessori Lessons, Ideas and More…

Sizzling Summertime 2015 Lesson Plans

SUMMER KITE FLYING

Learn how to make and fly a kite in your neck of the woods.

Planning a trip to Southern California? All the fun is not necessary had at the amusement parks. Take a side trip to Seal Beach, a quaint beach town, that has much to offer. While there, you won’t want to miss the monthly Seal Beach Kite Club meetings. Click here to see what the city of Seal Beach has in store for you and your family. Then, venture to Hobby City for some additional free hands-on fun.

GO AHEAD….MAKE SOME MUSIC THIS SUMMER

Learn how to make a band in minutes. Yes, you and your children can make a coffee can drum and yogurt container shakers by following the easy instructions provided by Kidsongs.com.

Montessorian Dale Gausman will show you how to make and introduce rhythm sticks in your school and home classrooms. Click here for details.

The Blow Ye Winds , Paddle Wheeler and Erie Canal – and Wabash Cannonball are free extension activities from the guide written by Dr. Kathryn A. Short, for Kimbo’s CD release: “Songs About America,” Celebrating America Through Song.. See Kimbo for details.

Download The Number Eating Alligator from Kidsongs.com and discover how these songs can be incorporated into your ECE and elementary math and music lesson planning. Click here for details.

Marjorie Kiel Persons presents two marvelous integrated lessons for your summer music presentations. – Water Music Alla Hornpipe by George Frideric Handel. and Oh, How I Love Italy ? Music, Art, and Food seasoned with History and Geography See Click on this link to access both lesson plans.

EASY, BREEZY, SIZZLING SUMMER RECIPES

Dale Gausman, owner of the North American Montessori Center, shows how children can plan, prepare, and execute a Spring or Summer Tea. Dale’s Friendship Salad makes a perfect addition to the Spring Tea menu or any other event planned for the upcoming months. Click here for details.

Encourage children to try making some new recipes this summer! Make lunchtime interesting by including some rollie poultries and stuffed apples into your meal planning. See http://www.amonco.org/summer7/montessori_summer7.pdf

Learn how to present an authentic Montessori food unit study featuring the yummy Watermelon Blueberry Banana Split recipe.

DIanne Knesek, Montessori teacher and owner of Conceptual Learning, shares a mouth watering Summer Fruit, Cheese, and Meat Kabobs recipe. Visit this link for complete information

Planning a unit study about pirates? Try these three pirate snack ideas – Treasure Chests, Pirate Ships and Cannonballs, all of which, can be easily integrated into any pirate unit study. Click here to access the recipes.

For a festive change, create your own hot dog buffet and serve some fudge cupcakes for dessert. Then, cool down your lazy afternoon with some delicious green smoothies. http://www.amonco.org/summer7/montessori_summer7.pdf

SPECIAL MOTOR SKILLS OFFERING

Are you looking for an additional aid to help inspire good penmanship? Nan Barchowsky may have just what you need. Check out A Bit of Yarn for Good Pen Hold http://www.amonco.org/summer2/montessori_summer2.pdf by clicking here.

SUMMER SCIENCE

Begin the summer science learning adventure with hands on fun. Children will discover how to change the color of a flower and how water travels up plants by participating in the Changing a Flower’s Color activity submitted by Dale Gausman. See http://www.amonco.org/summer6/montessori_summer6.pdf for details.

John, from Exploration Education, presents an excellent, fun-filled simple and effective activity about static electricity is for children six and up. Click here for details.

Invite children to vicariously go on an animal safari! To access resources for a unit study, visit http://www.amonco.org/summer7/montessori_summer7.pdf

Children marvel at identifying the different birds that they encounter at the park, beach or even in their backyard. Find out how Backyard Birds can be incorporated into your ornithology presentations by visiting http://www.amonco.org/summer5/montessori_summer5.pdf

Rae, from Creative Process, shares a leaf print activity that combines the study of botany with art. To access this information, visit http://www.amonco.org/summer4/montessori_summer4.pdf

Richard, from the Montessori Materials LORD Company, is offering FREE reading books, and a Montessori land and water labels http://www.amonco.org/summer7/montessori_summer7.pdf

Easily create a seashell unit study. Quickly locate links to seashell classification materials and other resources by visiting http://www.amonco.org/summer/montessori_summer1.pdf

GARDENING GALORE

Summer gardening can be especially meaningful if you plan ahead. A Gardening Unit Study (With the Focus on Summer)Montessori Lessons will provide the info you need to customize your garden lesson planning. Find the gardening resources and lesson plans now, so that you embark on your summer gardening journey when late May arrives.

In Nurturing Budding Botanists – Learning and Teaching the Basics of Plant Science, author Sara L. Ambarian has provided the indepth botany lesson planning information and resources needed Click here for details.

MONTESSORI MATH

Receive some free hands-on algebra exercises designed by Dr. Henry Borenson See Hands On Equations for details. Check out DIanne Knesek’s Montessori problem solving lessons by clicking here.

GAME TIME!

What type of learner is your child? Mariaemma, from Coaching for Learning Success(tm), has the resources you need to discover the answer to this question, plus she has generously contributed her Basketball and Whole Body Memorizing Activity. Access this information, as well as The Whole Body Learner – Gifted for Moving! article by visiting Click here for details.

Stillsonworks offers more unique puzzles designed for middle school students. Try your hand at the free exercises included by clicking here Access additional FREE puzzles for children/teens by visiting http://www.amonco.org/summer7/montessori_summer7.pdf

Be sure to check out the cooperative games by Rae from Creative Process. (Click here for details.)

THIS and THAT…. Additional unique, creative lesson planning info.

Rae from Creative Process generously has provided the following free activities], articles, and lesson plans: Calendar Activity, Teacher as Curator : Setting up a School Gallery and Sharing Food, Food in Art? Access this information by clicking here

Are you taking your class on a literature journey? Why not start with the classics. Let Rita Arpaia of literature.com show you how. Point your browser to http://www.amonco.org/summer6/montessori_summer6.pdf Read Rita’s other articles and learn more about how literature.com’s resources for your school and homeschool libraries.

Sara Ambarian has written a two part article which will further help you with your selection of children’s books. In http://www.amonco.org/summer2/montessori_summer2.pdf Part I of her article, you will learn about the books selected by the AMC resource participants.

In http://www.amonco.org/summer4/montessori_summer4.pdf Part I read about community recommendations. This balanced article is sure to help you select just the right books for your school and homeschool classrooms.

If you would like to view the complete table of contents of the newsletter, or you have experienced any difficulties accessing the links above, please visit http://www.amonco.org/montessori_summer_handson.html

Now, with these fun activities, recipes and lessons, you are set to make this summer the best yet!

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

http://www.amonco.org/spring4/montessori_spring4.pdf

>>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. – http://www.kiteconnection.com/

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
310-372-0308

http://www.pierkites.com

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 www.sandiegokiteclub.com

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. – https://www.facebook.com/sbkitefest

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

I’ll update you on Morro Bay shortly.

IF you have an event for NKM, be sure to register it at www.nationalkitemonth.org.

Fly safe and stay comfy.

Best Wishes and Winds,

glen

Glen E. Rothstein – Director – Region 12
American Kitefliers Association
www.aka.kite.org

https://www.facebook.com/akasocial?fref=ts<&lt;

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Upcoming Southern California Kite Flying Events

Greetings Family and Friends.

 

I have the privilege of telling you that while the rest of the country starts cooling down, Kiting in Southern California is heating up!

 

4 unique events are happening and I will assure you that each will bring you great joy.

 

#1

 

The 17th Annual Japan America Kite Festival rolls into Seal Beach, next Sunday the 20th. Besides the glorious displays of flying fabric, sport kite demos and international culture, there will be expanded entertainment and one of the latest food crazes, Ramen Burgers. And again this year, FREE SHUTTLE SERVICE will be offered, as the parking lot gets full early in Seal Beach.

 

#2

 

It was a decade ago that the Japan America Society jumped in to help us grow this event. We obviously can not thank them enough for their efforts and support. If you’re not familiar with them, they are one of those organizations that works tirelessly throughout the year putting on events to educate and entertain people of all ages, regardless of heritage. On the evening of Wednesday, October 23rd, you have the chance to wine and dine with Kite Master Mikio Toki at Mattel Headquarters in El Segundo. World class kites and world class food. This is a one of a kind event and you don’t want to miss out. I hope to see you there.

 

#3

 

Kids and Kites…They go together. On Saturday, November 9th, we’ll be at the grand reopening of Horseshoe Lake in the County of San Bernardino, near Victorville and Hesperia, off I-15. This will be the first of what will hopefully become an annual event. Expect Show Kites, Sport Kite Demos, Kids Craft Kites and Flying, Tail Chases, Candy Drops, Kite Hospital, Vendor Lesson Area and a Kite Shop Vendor. I’ve been to the site and you will be hard pressed to find a better venue for this type of event.

 

#4

 

An event in the works at the Pasadena Museum of History. Wednesday, November 20th kicks off “Kites, Wings & Other Flying Things. This will be an ongoing exhibit of the history of flight within the Pasadena area as well as soup to nuts kiting. This display and related functions will run through the middle of April, which happens to be National Kite Month. I am directly involved in it and I am beyond words as to the honor and cool factor of yet another one of a kind presentation that this is becoming. As we get closer, I’ll have more information for you.

 

There you have it. I know we’re all busy. Try to crowbar in some kite time. It’s good for you.

 

Best Wishes and Winds,

 

 glen

 

 Glen E. Rothstein – Director – Region 12

 

American Kitefliers Association

 

www.aka.kite.org

 

https://www.facebook.com/akasocial?fref=ts

 

To learn more about kite flying, read Up, Up and Away – The Art and Fun of Kite Flying AMC Montessori Summer Hands-On Newsletter Part I – American …

 

Heidi Spietz

 

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Spring 2015 – It’s Time to Head Outdoors

“In those vernal seasons of the year, when the air is calm and pleasant, it were an injury and a sullenness against Nature not to go out and see her riches, and partake in her rejoicing with heaven and earth.” John Milton, Tractate of Education

Spring is a season of transitions in the world around us.  Changing weather conditions, migrating birds, growing vegetation, and other natural occurrences make it an exciting time to get curious and go outside to see what is going on.  Here are a few ideas that you will want to use within the next few months.

Try this fun spring activity, “Watching Spring”, from the Maryland Department of Natural Resources.  http://www.dnr.state.md.us/cin/pdfs/Watching_Spring_Activity.pdf

You will find lots of fun ideas for family fun in the spring here:

http://stayathomemoms.about.com/od/activitiesandfun/u/spring-activities.htm

http://www.grandparents.com/grandkids/activities-games-and-crafts/spring-fun-activities-list

http://www.notimeforflashcards.com/2012/03/50-simple-outdoor-activities-for-kids.html

Nature’s Workshop Plus! also offers some great ideas for how to “Celebrate Spring with Some Fun, Educational Nature Activities”.  http://www.amonco.org/spring8/montessori_spring8.pdf

Compare and contrast spring and summer & fall and winter in North Carolina Forests.  Learn more by visiting Farm Country General Store http://www.homeschoolfcgs.com/product_info.php/products_id/1367

Traditionally, families have often spent outdoor time together in spring flying kits. If it’s been a while since you have tried this activity, get into the spirit with “The Art and Fun of Kite Flying”. http://www.amonco.org/spring4/montessori_spring4.pdf

For an outdoor science activity that doesn’t demand a lot of equipment or a high fitness level, check out Sanford R. Wilbur’s “Bird-watching with Children”. Birdwatching also allows children to practice being patient and quiet.  http://www.amonco.org/spring1/montessori_spring1.pdf

Looking for a place to get close to nature?  America’s national forests are a great place to have fun and get away from town for a few hours or a few days.  Many locations are still free! Find areas to explore and activities to pursue in your own state, or plan a trip to a neighboring region here: http://www.fs.fed.us/recreation/map/state_list.shtml

Spring is coming, if it hasn’t arrived yet where you live, so banish your own – and your students’ — winter blues with some time enjoying the outdoors and nature!

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Learning is a Picnic! Part Two-Adventures and Activities

“The most effective kind of education is that a child should play amongst lovely things.”  Plato

A picnic is a wonderful opportunity for both children and adults to observe and enjoy nature.  While you eat, as well as before and after your meal, it is fun to keep your eyes and ears open for wildlife, insects, changing sky conditions, and more. 

If you are new to birdwatching, or want some kid-friendly tips, please refer to Sanford R. Wilbur’s “Birdwatching with Kids” interview. http://www.amonco.org/spring1/montessori_spring1.pdf

Birdcage Press also offers a fun card game and book set, Backyard Birds, which you could use in conjunction with your birdwatching adventures. http://www.amonco.org/summer5/montessori_summer5.pdf  

For younger kids and hands-on explorers, botany might be a more rewarding pursuit than bird or wildlife watching.  You need almost no equipment, you don’t need to stay quiet, and your subjects will not fly or scamper away while you are studying them! Make sure you are familiar with poison oak, poison ivy, stinging nettle or any other plants in your area which students should not handle.  Then, get more study ideas from Sara L. Ambarian in her article, “Nurturing Budding Botanists”. http://www.amonco.org/Botanists.pdf

“Whole body learners” (for more, see http://www.amonco.org/summer5/montessori_summer5.pdf ) might really “dig” geologic explorations. Examining soil and rock formations often requires a lot of walking around and getting your hands dirty. Don’t think that you need to have a location with really dramatic geologic features like boulders or cliff faces in order to have a rewarding geology adventure. You can learn a lot from looking at variations in the color and texture of soil or gravel areas, the sizes and composition of rocks along a river bed, the shapes of surrounding hills or mountains, etc. Visit the following website from Rochester, New York, for some fun ideas to get kids started enjoying rocks and minerals. http://rochester.kidsoutandabout.com/content/getting-kids-rockhounding  

Geology enthusiasts will also enjoy the Hobby Lobby story found here: http://www.amonco.org/summer2/montessori_summer2.pdf .

Another great way to enjoy a day outside is to immortalize it in art. Before going, you might invest some time preparing with an art study program like that found in Coyote Creek’s video series “Drawing Nature”. http://www.coycreek.com/drawingnaturevol2drawinglessonsforbeginners.aspx

Other fun outdoor activities that give children an opportunity to move around and might be appropriate for your picnic location are kite-flying and beachcombing. Find lots of ideas and resources on these subjects in “Up, Up and Away—The Art and Fun of Kite Flying” and “Classified Seashell Activities and Resources”. http://www.amonco.org/summer/montessori_summer1.pdf

For learning opportunities involving weather and sky conditions, check out these informative links from the National Weather Service. http://www.srh.noaa.gov/ffc/?n=teacher

When you’re done eating and exploring, you may want to make a memento to remember the outing. This site has some fun outdoor crafts listed in their sections for “backyard”, “beach craft”, “camping and picnic”, etc. http://familycrafts.about.com/od/summercrafts/a/summermn.htm

Here are a few other selected outdoor craft ideas for students young and old: 

Tree Rubbings Collage http://www.busybeekidscrafts.com/Tree-Rubbings-Collage.html

Pretty pencil pinwheel http://crafts.kaboose.com/pretty-pencil-pinwheel.html ,

Fun Floral Straws http://www.marthastewart.com/355464/fun-floral-straws?czone=holiday/sixty-days-of-summer/party-ideas&center=276964&gallery=275330&slide=355464

Families or other groups can extend the outdoor fun, and help a good cause, too, by joining the National Wildlife Federation’s Great American Backyard Campout.  Find out more about the program at: http://www.nwf.org/Get-Outside/Great-American-Backyard-Campout.aspx

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Easter-Themed Montessori Lessons and Links

As Easter nears, here are some fun and educational ideas for students young and old.

Get in the swing of holiday lessons with some Easter and Passover vocabulary practice from Stillsonworks’ Middle School word puzzles. http://www.amonco.org/spring3/montessori_spring_3.pdf

Georgette Baker from Cantemos tells you how to make a fun and festive hat from newspaper or butcher paper, as well as an easy tie-dye Easter egg project. http://www.amonco.org/spring1/montessori_spring1.pdf

Another way to create bright, beautiful and artistic eggs is with Doc Hinkle’s Original Paint-On Egg Coloring Kit.  This American-made kit has been fun for children 5 and up since 1893.  http://www.vermontcountrystore.com/store/jump/productDetail/Catalog/Food_&_Candy/Easter_Treats/Doc_Hinkle_Egg_Coloring_Kits_%28Set_of_2%29/H3006

While eggs are on kids’ minds (and often on sale!), why not use eggs for some fun kitchen science. You will find lots of great ideas in the late Kathy Reilly’s “Exploring Eggs: Food-Related Activities”. http://www.amonco.org/spring8/montessori_spring8.pdf

Are Hot Cross Buns a tradition in your household? If they are, or if you would like to start including them, Joy of Baking has a history, recipe and how-to video to help you get started. http://www.joyofbaking.com/breakfast/HotCrossBuns.html

Mary Ann Esposito’s Ciao Italia also offers a similar presentation for casatiello, a traditional Neapolitan meat-and-cheese-stuffed Easter bread with whole eggs baked in. What child would not be fascinated by that? http://www.ciaoitalia.com/seasons/20/2020/neapolitan-stuffed-easter-bread

If Easter brings you some warm weather, why not try your hand at some home-made ice cream? Try Ron from Intelli-Tunes ‘ “Home-Made Ice Cream in a Bag for Two”, which uses common household items and some people power to churn up this cool treat. http://www.amonco.org/spring2/montessori_spring2.pdf  If you like, you can top it off with “Hot Fudge Topping” from a yummy recipe submitted by Larry at Farm Country General Store. http://www.amonco.org/spring7/montessori_spring7.pdf

Looking for a fun holiday outing? If the weather cooperates, how about some kite-flying? Get more ideas in “Up, Up, and Away: The Art and Science of Kite Flying”. http://www.amonco.org/spring4/montessori_spring4.pdf

If there’s no wind, or your students like a more scientific, less-active outing, get some great ideas from Don and Diana from Nature’s Workshop Plus’ “Delighting in Discovering Little Things”. http://www.amonco.org/creative/montessori_fall4.pdf  You could also pack a new field guide into their Easter basket to help get them started on their observations. http://www.workshopplus.com/productcart/pc/viewCategories.asp?idCategory=19

What better time is there than Easter to discuss concepts of peace and harmony? Rae from The Creative Process helps you get the conversation started with Edward Hicks’ well-known painting, “The Peaceable Kingdom”. She also shares some great resources for studying and enjoying flowers in art. http://www.amonco.org/spring2/montessori_spring2.pdf

Need some special goodies as holiday treats or to fill up your Easter baskets? In these tough economic times, how about making your plans include some home-made goodies, thrifty substitutions, and goods manufactured right here in the United States?

Nan Barchowsky’s Peanut Butter Fudge is a yummy, family-friendly treat which also comes with handwriting practice. http://www.amonco.org/Recipe.pdf

Not a peanut butter fan? How about trying your hand at “Farmer’s Favorite Fudge” from our friends at the Farm Country General Store. http://www.amonco.org/winter6/montessori_winter6.pdf

For more ideas for making goodies for and/or with children, check out these websites: http://www.candyusa.com/FunStuff/ForKids.cfm , http://allrecipes.com/recipes/holidays-and-events/easter/candy/top.aspx,  http://www.homebaking.org/index.html (great educator resources here) ,http://www.chsugar.com/familyfun/baking.html ,

For unusual and nostalgic candies, check out Victory Seed Company’s Old-Time Candy Store. From wax teeth to sassafras candy to Teaberry gum, they have many fun varieties; and profits from your purchase go to support the preservation of rare and heirloom seed varieties.  http://www.victoryseeds.com/candystore.html

Still looking for more sweets and goodies? http://www.americanmanufacturing.org/blog/easter-keep-it-made-usa , http://www.americansworking.com/candy.html , http://www.b4usa.com/category/candy-2

The Peterborough Basket Company has more than 150 years of history weaving baskets in  Peterborough, New Hampshire. If you want to invest in a basket that will be useful after Easter, or perhaps become a family heirloom, these baskets are gorgeous and sturdy, and they support a historic American business. http://www.peterborobasket.com/c-11-easter-baskets.aspx

You will find lots more thrifty and creative ideas for Easter baskets and fillings here: http://www.livingonadime.com/easter-basket-ideas , http://www.thriftyfun.com/tf000796.tip.html, and http://www.stretcher.com/stories/01/010402g.cfm .

Finally, visit  http://fromthesheepfold.blogspot.com/2011/05/practical-life-exercises-for-easter.html to see the practical life exercises in the Good Shepherd Atrium for Easter.

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Spring Forward with Hands On Lesson Planning

Please visit https://montessori21stcentury.wordpress.com/2013/01/26/spring-forward-2013-with-timely-lesson-planning-ideas/ for the updated 2013 issue!

Enjoy!

Heidi Anne Spietz
http://www.amonco.org

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Exploring Holidays and History

 

Spring brings many special holidays and historical events to enrich our homes and classrooms. Enjoy these resources to help your students understand and explore these interesting observances.

For a round-up of various links for January and February lesson plans and ideas, visit: http://www.amonco.org/jan_feb_celebrations.html   

Black History Month – February

Black History Month, observed in February since 1926, provides many interesting opportunities to explore history, culture and food.  The Creative Process can get you started with their “Celebrate Black History Month” page, linked here: http://www.amonco.org/spring8/montessori_spring8.pdf

You will find more information, resources and recipes in the links below.

http://www.lessonplanspage.com/blackhistorymonth-htm , http://seasonal.theteacherscorner.net/black-history-month , http://www.thinkfinity.org/?q=black-history-month , and http://www.soul-food-advisor.com/black_history_month.html

Abraham Lincoln’s birthday, February 12, 1809

There is no question that Abraham Lincoln is one of the most famous and most admired presidents of the United States.  Many states no longer observe his birthday as a separate holiday; but his life, accomplishments and assassination are at the heart of one of the most complex and pivotal eras of American history.  President Lincoln’s life and career make an excellent basis for unit studies. Explore these interesting websites for more information.

http://www.whitehouse.gov/about/presidents/abrahamlincoln , http://www.nps.gov/abli/index.htmhttp://www.civilwarhome.com/lincolnbio.htm , and http://www.primaryteachers.org/abraham_lincoln_unit.htm

George Washington’s birthday, February 22, 1732 (Presidents’ Day observed February 20, 2012)

Sara L. Ambarian helps us get to know the man who is called “the Father of our Country”, with information about George Washington in her article, “Celebrating the Personal Life of George Washington”. You’ll find additional educational links about our first president at the end of the article. http://www.amonco.org/spring8/montessori_spring8.pdf

For more presidential lesson ideas, read “It’s Time to Think Outside the Box and Kindle, Too!” from Literatureplace.com, with its suggestions for studying Thomas Jefferson. http://www.amonco.org/spring3/montessori_spring_3.pdf  You can also enhance your studies of government and politics with a batch of the famous, traditional and tasty Senate Bean Soup, from Dale and Rita at North American Montessori Center. http://www.amonco.org/spring4/montessori_spring4.pdf

St. Patrick’s Day, March 17

Visit these links for lesson and craft ideas for the “greenest” spring holiday! https://montessori21stcentury.wordpress.com/2008/02/13/st-patricks-day-crafts-origami-and-more  http://www.fastq.com/~jbpratt/education/sstudies/geog/stpatricks.html  and http://www.edhelper.com/st_patricks_day.htm  

Easter, April 8

Georgette Baker from Cantemos offers some fun projects for Easter and other spring holidays.  Check out her festive hat and easy tie-dye instructions. http://www.amonco.org/spring1/montessori_spring1.pdf  

For long-lasting Easter fun outdoors, Jan from Garden Artisans shares a cute Hippity Hoppity Bunny Topiary project here: http://www.amonco.org/spring2/montessori_spring2.pdf  

Bake up an interesting Italian tradition with Mary Ann Esposito’s Neopolitan Stuffed Easter Bread.  If desirable, you could make it easier, more economical and/or more kid-friendly by replacing the fancy imported meat and cheese with meat or cheese of your choice.  It might also be more kid-friendly if you dice the meat and cheese a little smaller than Ms. Esposito does in the tutorial.  The recipe is full of interesting Easter symbolism, and what child wouldn’t be fascinated (as Ms. Esposito was herself) by the whole raw eggs baked into the bread! http://www.ciaoitalia.com/seasons/20/2020/neapolitan-stuffed-easter-bread  

Find more Easter inspiration at the following sites.

http://www.preschooleducation.com/aeaster.shtml , http://www.bobsedulinks.com/easter.htm  and http://www.holidays.net/easter/index.htm

Cinco de Mayo, May 5

Cinco de Mayo is not, as sometimes assumed, Mexican Independence Day (a separate holiday which is celebrated on September 16). It marks the Battle of Puebla in which Mexican troops defeated French troops. Find out more at: http://www.mexonline.com/cinco-de-mayo.htm  

For introduction or reinforcement of Spanish language lessons, check out the offerings from Cantemos http://www.amonco.org/spring1/montessori_spring1.pdf  and Professor Toto http://www.amonco.org/spring6/montessori_spring6.pdf  

For Spanish-speaking students or those learning Spanish, check out our Unit Study Lesson Plan About Mexico in Spanish. https://montessori21stcentury.wordpress.com/2008/02/14/a-unit-study-lesson-plan-about-mexico-in-spanish

For more lesson ideas and some recipe ideas for Mexican food to make, check these interesting sites.  http://seasonal.theteacherscorner.net/cinco-de-mayo/ , http://recipesource.com/ethnic/americas/mexican /, and http://www.mexicanrecipes.org /

Mother’s Day , May 13

Parents and educators are always looking for ideas and resources for the popular holiday, Mother’s Day.  Dale Gausman from NAMC lists some books and ideas in his article, “Mother’s Day in the Montessori Classroom”. He also provides some lesson plan ideas for older students.  http://www.amonco.org/spring6/montessori_spring6.pdf

These websites provide some additional ideas for crafts and decorations.  http://www.mothersdaycentral.com/mothers-day-crafts/  and http://www.divinedinnerparty.com/mothers-day-ideas.html

Memorial Day, May 28

Memorial Day is a solemn, but potentially important holiday with which to acquaint children at age appropriate levels. NAMC’s Dale Gausman discusses the history of and Montessori perspective for teaching about Memorial Day in his “Montessori Curriculum Ideas for Memorial Day”. http://www.amonco.org/spring7/montessori_spring7.pdf

Find more information on the history of this day of remembrance, at: http://www.history.com/topics/memorial-day-history  and http://virtual-markets.net/vme/memorial/dvm_mem.html  

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For more seasonal and holiday observances for educators, visit: http://www.netposterworks.com/holidays/index.html  and http://www.timeanddate.com/holidays

For more about holidays, in a convenient monthly chronology, see Rae from The Creative Process’s “Monthly Observances and Notable Dates”. http://www.amonco.org/spring2/montessori_spring2.pdf

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Upcoming Summer Seal Beach CA Kite Flying Events

Greetings Fellow Kite Fliers !

As many of you know, the Up Up and Away Kite Club of Seal Beach has “Kite Club Sunday” on the second Sunday of each month. For those of you unfamiliar, it’s your typical “SUAFYK” gathering.

With August quickly approaching, we wanted to give you a head’s up that instead of the Regular Sunday Fly on the 14th, we will once again be having a Night Fly on the evening of the 13th.

Been to one? You know what to expect…If not, here’s what happens:
Fliers gather in the afternoon for flight and enjoy chill time. Then, as the sun falls away, the hardcore bunch sets to attaching their lights (button cell, bike flashers, LED’s, and yes, even Fiber Optic) to their kites and the standard gentle breeze puts the show in the dark sky. It’s quite the sight for fliers and non-fliers alike.
If you haven’t figured it out, you’re invited…
Please join us North of the Pier.

For further info, please contact the club’s email address jay.janis@yahoo.com or mine via glen.e.rothstein@gmail.com

Best Wishes & Winds,
ger
Glen E. Rothstein
Proud Member – UU&A KC

AMC Editor’s Note –

P.S.  You can read more about the kite club and things to do while visiting Seal Beach, California by reading Part I of the AMC Summer Newsletter.  Click on the link below:

AMC Montessori Summer Hands-On Newsletter Part I

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FAMILY FUN AND OUTDOOR SCIENCE PURSUITS: A “NATURAL” COMBINATION

The sunny weather conditions and available leisure time of summer lure many of us outdoors for our family recreational and educational activities.  This is a fortuitous situation if you wish to interest children in science, since spending time outside automatically puts us in closer contact with many aspects of the natural world.  Nature-related sciences are very appealing to many children; and any “lesson” where the “classroom” is a park, beach, forest, desert or mountain automatically adds some novelty and interest.

Here in southern California, we are blessed with many wonderful places to go and things to do for outdoor-oriented fun and learning.  Recently, we featured Up, Up and Away Kites! in Seal Beach, plus many lesson plan ideas related to kite flying. You can review those at: http://www.amonco.org/summer/montessori_summer1.pdf

Just a few doors down on Main Street from this Seal Beach kite store you will find the California Seashell Company, a great resource for sea life studies, as well as gifts for beach lovers. This fun store also has a website for on-line sales; so even if you cannot come to southern California and/or are land-locked with no local beach of your own, you can mail-order seashells, enjoy their beauty, and use them in a variety of educational ways.  For more on the California Seashell Company and many interesting lesson plan ideas using seashells, please visit:  http://www.amonco.org/summer/montessori_summer1.pdf

In most parts of the northern hemisphere, summer is a time of growth.  If you enjoy outdoor recreation, generally you will be surrounded by interesting plant life.  Even if you are a homebody, in summer you will generally buy and eat more vegetables and fruits.  That makes summer an optimal time to learn more about plants. In “Nurturing Budding Botanists – Learning and Teaching the Basics of Plant Science”, Sara L. Ambarian offers numerous ideas for getting kids interested in plant life during day-to-day activities and summer outings.  You can find this article at: http://www.amonco.org/Botanists.pdf

Nature’s Workshop Plus!  is a family-run business which sells books, science kits and equipment, and many products to help you enjoy your time outdoors this summer.  Check out their summer specials page for some fun ideas. http://www.workshopplus.com/

Coyote Creek’s “Animal Safari: A Learning Journey” eight-volume DVD series was designed to acquaint young people with the characteristics, behaviors, and habitats of many diverse animals. In most of the programs, members of the audience are invited to touch, hold, and gently interact with the animals. You could use these DVDs to pique children’s interest in animals before an outing, or just as an indoor “adventure”. http://www.coycreek.com/animalsafarialearningjourneyseriesvolumes1-8dvd-2.aspx

Ampersand Press specializes in educational games and nature stamps.  Learn and play at the same time, while familiarizing your students with animal characteristics, food chain concepts, biodiversity, backwoods lore, and more!  Explore the possibilities on their site, and be sure to check the Newsletter page for additional educational links.  http://www.ampersandpress.com

Another obvious scientific study for outdoor summer activities is meteorology.  We are out in the weather more if we are active outdoors in the summer; and on these long days, we also have the time to really notice what is going on in the sky above us.  There is more to summer weather study than the pleasant pastime of lying in the grass imagining clouds are animals, angels or castles. Understanding and following the forecasts of summer weather can also be a safety issue.  Depending on the region where you live and/or travel, you might need to adjust your outdoor plans due to heat, rain, and/or severe weather.  Teaching children about weather can be fun and interesting. It can also help them understand why when weather impacts their lives and plans. For more on meteorology, plus lots of definitions, experiments, puzzles, and safety tips, visit meteorologist Crystal Wicker’s excellent Weather Wiz Kids website: http://weatherwizkids.com

Loosened bedtime schedules and warmer evenings also make stargazing a natural scientific pursuit for the summer. For more technical information to get you started, visit: http://www.astronomy.com/en/sitecore/content/Home/News-Observing/Astronomy%20Kids.aspx  For a charming perspective on enjoying the night sky with children, please read “On Stargazing With Children” by Kimberly Misra, from Mothering.com, October 30, 2006:  http://mothering.com/parenting/on-stargazing-with-children

Whatever you do this summer, remember to notice and appreciate the ever-changing beauties and unique characteristics of the natural world around us, and to share those observations with the young people in your life.

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