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Montessori Lessons, Ideas and More…

Montessori Lessons to Jumpstart 2016!

Happy New Year!!

Below are links to jump start your Montessori lesson planning for the new year.

Many of these lessons are free!

Getting Ready for a “New” Year

Animals in the Winter Unit Study Free Lesson Plans

Valentine Day Links

Montessori Winter-Themed Activities from NAMC Part I

Montessori Winter-Themed Activities from NAMC Part II

Gardening Year Round – Tips from an Expert

Beginning a Spring Garden at Home or School

Spring Tea

Year End Activities

Draw Your World Lesson Plans

Children’s Books for Summer Reading – Part II

Bird-watching with Children

Monthly Observances and Notable Data

Science Activity “I CAN’T TAKE THE PRESSURE!”

Celebrating the Personal Life of George Washington – lesson planning ideas

Valentine Origami Art & Math Activities

A Movie About Maria Montessori Worth Watching

AMC Montessori Winter Hands On Lessons

Hands-On Interdisciplinary Learning

Winter Science Links

Want more?? Click on the links below for additional free lessons and articles that are available only at the amonco.org website :

Italy – Links for a Montessori Unit Study

A Maria Montessori Movie Worth Seeing

Gardening Year Round – Tips from an Expert

AMC Holiday Montessori Grammar Bingo and Extension Exercises

Apples and Oranges – Links for Montessori Unit Study

Study of the Human Respiratory System – Links for Montessori Unit Study

Medical Terminology – Links for Montessori Unit Study

The Human Cardiovascular System – Links for Montessori Unit Study

Cardiology Terminology

The Human Nervous System – Links for Montessori Unit Study

Let’s Go on an Animal Safari – See Part VII

More in store for you in 2016!

Visit www.amonco.org often throughout 2016 to discover new Montessori lesson planning.

Enjoy!
Heidi
http://www.amonco.org

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It’s Time to Try Something Different This Fall

The autumn months can be full of unique learning activities if you know where to look.    Why not experiment with something new and different this fall by using some of the activities featured at the websites below?

Begin by visiting Birdcage Press http://www.birdcagepress.com/, by participating in their beautifully illustrated stories and games, children can learn more about art, wildlife & nature, air & space and history.

Next, point your browser to Coyote Creek Productions http://www.coycreek.com/ where you will find a collection of DVDs featuring a four volume set of drawing lessons and an eight volume animal safari series.

Children in a Montessori learning environment use classified reading cards to identify and categorize different animals. Such exercises sometimes focus on helping the child learn about each animal’s habitat, physical characteristics, and relationship to other animals. The Coyote Creek Animal Safari series will bring this learning to life.   See Coyote Creek Productions http://www.coycreek.com/ full line of products, where you will find a collection of DVDs featuring this eight volume animal safari series plus a four volume set of drawing lessons DVDs.

Your next stop should be to Draw Your World http://www.drawyourworld.com/ After you have familiarized yourself with their product line, jump to http://www.drawyourworld.com/blog/ Take time to read through the various posts there.  You are more than likely to locate one or two of their featured resources or lessons that can be easily included in your existing reading, writing and drawing activities.   For example, this company offers a free Draw a Simple World Map hands-on lesson that can be used with many Montessori based geography lessons.  See http://www.drawyourworld.com/blog/draw-a-simple-world-map.html to download.

Use the free map from Draw Your World with the free set of Montessori land forms courtesy of LORD Company http://www.lordequip.com/ Download a set of land forms for global geographical investigations by visiting http://www.lordequip.com/land_water.php LORD Company also offers a wide selection of furniture plus other free downloadable resources.  See http://www.lordequip.com/ for details.

Add some music to the mix this fall by first visiting Gari Stein’s The More We Get Together http://www.little-folks-music.com/together.htm page.   You will find some invaluable resources you can include in your music programs this fall by clicking on the links to the left of the screen http://www.little-folks-music.com/together.htm plus an overview of The More We Get Together book.   Renowned author Gari Stein’s music career spans over 47 years.  As a seasoned ECE professional music consultant, she is in constant demand to develop workshops and teach new classes.

For Montessori based lessons that compare and contrast Renaissance and Baroque music visit http://www.amonco.org/spring2002_1.html These lessons can be integrated into existing Renaissance and Baroque art lessons by visiting http://www.amonco.org/spring2002_2.html

Next, hop on over to Kimbo Educational http://kimboed.com/ where you will find a nice collection of dance, fitness and singable songs DVDs and CDs.  Check out the new Kimbo Preschool Gym CD http://kimboed.com/preschoolgym.aspx#.UkHw_LxVe0c which will make fitness fun for 3 – 5 year olds.

 Speaking of fun, Hands-On Equations http://www.borenson.com/ replaces the fear and dread of learning algebra with pure excitement and joy. Take a moment right now to visit this website where you can view students solving equations using Hands-On Equations.  What you will readily notice in each of the video clips is that students are relaxed and thoroughly engaged in the hands-on algebra learning activity. Click on http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mo6vvOnkErE to view an additional sample Hands-On Equations lesson.

Hands-On Equations also offers an app for the iPhone, iPad and iPad Touch.  See http://www.borenson.com/ for details.

The free Hands-On Equations Intro webmars are designed to address any questions you may have as well as provide a forum where you can learn more about the product.  Fortunately, the webmars are scheduled frequently throughout the year.   You can easily access the upcoming webmar schedule by visiting http://www.borenson.com/ Parents wishing to use the Hands-On Equations in a home setting should click on http://www.borenson.com/Home/ParentsHomePage/tabid/956/Default.aspx for specific information and resources.

Montessori educator Dianne Knesek is the creator of Conceptual Learning Materials, http://conceptuallearning.com/index.php?&vmcchk=1 a company based in Texas that services both school and home educators. Dianne’s intent has been to augment current resources and give greater opportunities for learning through discovery.  Her product line, http://www.conceptuallearning.com/component/option,com_virtuemart/Itemid,9/which continues to expand, is currently used in countless schools and other settings throughout the United States.  To see an example of Dianne’s learning style, please visit http://www.amonco.org/summer2/montessori_summer2.pdf  Scroll down until you see the free lessons “Inequalities” and “Problem Solving”.   The Problem Solving Series by Conceptual Learning Materials is a three-way matching series that addresses critical thinking and problem solving for all levels from K through 6th grade.

Finally, Bountiful Spinweave http://bountifulspinweave.com/ is known as a complete resource for those interested in weaving and knitting activities.  A collection of yarns, books, gifts, weaving and spinning supplies can be accessed at http://bountifulspinweave.com/kids-page.php#.UkIC97xVe0c Bountiful even offers a special Kids Page http://bountifulspinweave.com/kids-page.php which features products that can be used in either a school or home setting.

We know that the benefits of crafting stretch far beyond just making memories.  First, young children receive practical life applications as well as learning how to combine colors and textures.  Second, crafting gives family members an opportunity to share a creative experience.   Third, we all know that you can’t put a price on the value of a handmade gift.   With the holiday gift season fast approaching, now is the time to embark on making some of these projects.

Use the resources from the websites above, plus the ones listed at http://www.amonco.org/directory.html, to make your lessons for autumn awesome.

The companies specifically mentioned above have generously donated prizes for the 25th Anniversary of American Montessori Consulting Drawing.  The contest ends on September 30th.  Don’t forget to enter the drawing by visiting http://www.amonco.org/directory.html Scroll down to the bottom of the page and complete the entry blank.

Enjoy!
Heidi Anne Spietz
American Montessori Consulting
www.amonco.org

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Montessori Springtime Nature and Science Activities

Spring is an excellent time to get the children in our lives interested in and excited about science and nature.

Last year we interviewed ornithologist Sanford R. Wilbur for some tips about how to start children out in the engrossing activity of birdwatching. You don’t need to spend a lot of money or have any previous “birding” experience in order to help kids with ornithological studies.  Mr. Wilbur makes it fun and easy with his suggestions. http://www.amonco.org/spring1/montessori_spring1.pdf

Dale Gausman from the North American Montessori Center gives more useful suggestions in his article, “Introducing a Bird Feeder”. http://www.amonco.org/spring4/montessori_spring4.pdf

Spring weather is often perfect for burning off some energy and getting some fresh air while kite flying.  It is a fun hands-on activity with great science and exercise opportunities. Check out our information and links in “Up, Up, and Away – The Art and Fun of Kite Flying”, as well as our seashell classification activities (another fun spring science project) here: http://www.amonco.org/spring4/montessori_spring4.pdf

Another classic outdoor activity for kids (and adults) is blowing soap bubbles. It’s an inexpensive, simple activity that teaches some interesting lessons about gravity, light waves, hydrogen bonding and other chemistry and physics concepts. It’s also an activity that is beautiful and entertaining.  Add a younger sibling or family dog to the scene, trying to catch the bubbles, and you really have some fun! For more ideas and some recipes for making your own bubble solution, visit these websites: http://www.exploratorium.edu/ronh/bubbles/bubbles.html and http://www.bubbleblowers.com/homemade.html

Indoors or out, photography can provide the basis of many engaging and educational hands-on activities, when you choose age-appropriate equipment.  Rae from Creative Process suggests some interesting photography projects in her “Picture-A-Day and Time Lapse Photography Idea”.  http://www.amonco.org/spring2/montessori_spring2.pdf

 

For a great round-up of nature-oriented educational activities, be sure to read the listing from Diana Nuack of Nature’s Workshop Plus, available here: http://www.amonco.org/spring8/montessori_spring8.pdf

Need more spring activity ideas? http://www.activities-for-kids.net/spring-activities-for-kids.html

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When the outdoor fun is finished, there are lots of ways to expand on what you learned.

John Grunder from Exploration Education has shared two great science experiments.  “I CAN’T TAKE THE PRESSURE!” teaches Bernoulli’s principle in a fun and easy way with common household items.  His “Needle-Proof Balloon” experiment teaches about molecular bonds. http://www.amonco.org/spring3/montessori_spring_3.pdf

It is useful and easy to reinforce science and nature themes through both fiction and non-fiction reading.  Frances Hodgson  Burnett’s “The Secret Garden” is an especially appropriate subject for spring reading, because the garden and the children both transform and “bloom” as the book proceeds.  For more outdoor-oriented fiction,  many of the titles suggested by Sara L. Ambarian for summer reading would also be good inspiration for spring nature science projects and exploration.  http://www.amonco.org/Classic.pdf  Find some fun spring poetry here: http://www.dltk-holidays.com/spring/poem/index.htm

Back in the house or classroom, why not try the map of the world project from Draw Your World’s Marie and Kim to help students process and understand scale and geography.  http://www.amonco.org/spring5/montessori_spring.5.pdf

Have fun this weekend, checking out these wonderful resources.

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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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ACCENT ON ACADEMICS—Reading, Writing, Math, And Science

As teachers and parents, we know you are always looking for new ideas for teaching basic academic subjects.  Here is a round-up of useful resources.

READING–

Richard from The Lord Company is still offering Simple Reading Books. http://www.amonco.org/winter3/montessori_winter3.pdf

Find lesson plans to use with the Three Little Kittens story from Elaine at Kimbo. http://www.amonco.org/winter6/montessori_winter6.pdf

Enjoy Free Middle School Word Puzzles from Alan Stillson’s Stillson Works. http://www.amonco.org/winter5/montessori_winter5.pdf

For a fine variety of classic American and world literature books for all ages, check out the selections at Farm Country General Store (many titles are currently on sale) http://www.homeschoolfcgs.com/index.php/cPath/17_48  and Wholesome Books.  http://www.wholesome-books.com/store/literature.html

Literatureplace.com offers an historical fiction reading guide. http://www.amonco.org/winter7/montessori_winter7.pdf

For a neat assortment of art examples which features people reading, see The Creative Process.  http://www.netposterworks.com/literature/reading_in_art.html

WRITING–

Nan Barchowsky offers Big Numbers, a handwriting exercise using the elements of the Barchowsky Fluent Handwriting system. http://www.amonco.org/winter2/montessori_winter2.pdf

MATH–

Look over this Math Sequencing Activity from Dianne at Conceptual Learning. http://www.amonco.org/winter4/montessori_winter4.pdf

Dr. Borenson of Hands-On Equations offers free algebra problems here: http://www.amonco.org/winter4/montessori_winter4.pdf

MISCELLANEOUS SCIENCES–

Zoological study goes seasonal with the Animals in Winter Unit Study. http://www.amonco.org/winter4/montessori_winter4.pdf

For more on this subject, Dale Gausman from NAMC provides an activity plan for Acting Out How Animals Survive the Winter. http://www.amonco.org/winter3/montessori_winter3.pdf

Sample southern hemisphere Christmas flora in the Christmas in Australia Unit Study. http://www.amonco.org/winter2/montessori_winter2.pdf

Richard from The Lord Company offers Water and Land Forms Cards and Labels, with interesting ideas about how to use them differently for younger and older students. http://www.amonco.org/winter3/montessori_winter3.pdf

Enjoy Dale Gausman of NAMC’s Smelling Bottles Experiment for the littlest kids. http://www.amonco.org/winter3/montessori_winter3.pdf

For another interesting olfactory experience, try Mariaemma from Coaching for Learning-Success’ Scented Basket Project. http://www.amonco.org/winter4/montessori_winter4.pdf

Find out more interesting facts behind the science of our sense of smell here: http://www.stumblerz.com/science-of-smell/

Share this fun explanation of scratch-and-sniff technology with your sticker-crazy students. http://science.howstuffworks.com/innovation/science-questions/question274.htm

Another interesting and easy sense of smell experiments for 5th-8th graders can be found here: http://www.education.com/science-fair/article/kiss-and-smell/

Rae from The Creative Process gives ideas for teaching children about alternative energy sources like solar and wind. (Next to last set of articles.) http://www.amonco.org/winter1/montessori_winter1.pdf

Experience physics in action with this simple experiment from John Grunder at Exploration Education. Find free Air Lift Experiment instructions here: http://www.amonco.org/winter2/montessori_winter2.pdf

For older students, delve more into physics with his Soap That Grows experiment. http://www.amonco.org/winter6/montessori_winter6.pdf

 

 

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Montessori 2011 Summer Hands On Lesson Planning is Here!!

Just released! Click on the hyperlink to view the new

2011 AMC Montessori Summer Hands On Newsletter

Table of Contents

Part I

Up, Up and Away – The Art and Fun of Kite Flying
Classified Seashell Activities and Resources
Make a Band
Coffee Can Drum
Yogurt Container Shakers
Wind Chime Keys
Math Equations Activity
IT’S A WRAP – Making Beautiful Gift Boxes
Mother’s Day in the Montessori Classroom
Discovering the Tradition of the Dragon Boat Festival
Making Rhythm Sticks
Friendship Salad
Spring Tea

Part II

Hobby City – Fun for Free This Summer
Classified Seashell Activity Exercises
Stalactites and Stalagmites
Summer Fruit, Cheese and Meat Kabobs
Inequalities – Pre Algebra Lessons
Basketball and Whole Body Memorizing Activity
Watermelon Blueberry Banana Split
A Bit of Yarn for Good Pen Hold
A Page for the Letter O
Unit Study of the Nervous System

Part III

How to Play the Kazoo
Static Charge Science Activity
Floating Needles
Invisible Leash
Art for the Garden
Recipe for Onion Pie
Activities for Celebrating ‘America Through Song’
Special Summer Food Fun – Word Puzzles for Middle Schoolers
Celebrate the Letter “B”!
Bicycle Boogie
Body Sounds – A Fun Musical Activity
A Gardening Unit Study (With the Focus on Summer)
Nurturing Budding Botanists (Learning and Teaching the Basics of Plant Science)

Part IV

Lesson Plan for the Water Music – Alla Hornpipe
Oh How I Love Italy – Music, Art, Food Seasoned with History and Geography
Notable Teachers
Leaf Print T-Shirt
Calendar Activity Ideas
Teacher as Curator – Setting Up a School Gallery
Sharing Food, Food in Art
Tree Name Word Puzzle
Draw Your World Swan Lesson Plan

Part V

Recipe and Craft from Cantemos
Chocolate Dance
Squiggly Worm/Gusanito (Finger Play and Recipe)
Octopus Napkin Holders
Great Craft Idea for Father’s Day
Cooperative Games
Vignettes ~ Stories About Renaissance and Impressionist Artists
(Botticell, Fra Angelico, Leonardo, Michelangelo, and Raphael)
Classic Nature and Outdoor Adventure for Kids and Families

Part VI

Three Recipes ~ Treasure Chests, Pirate Ships and Canonballs
Gardening Activities for the Summer Months
Gingerbread Muffins by Montessori Teacher Cathie Perolman
Changing a Flower’s Color by Montessori teacher Dale Gausman – NCME
Making a Simple Friendship Bracelet by Montessori teacher Dale Gausman – NCME
Bicycling for Education – Part I
Bicycling From Gettysburg Battlefield to Washington D.C.
A Trip to the Aleutian Islands
Article/Lesson Plan ~ Howls With Owls
Article ~ Taking your class on a literature journey?

Part VII

Working with Notations – A Math Activity
Fun With Language Links
Free Reading Activity
Cinnamon Rolls Recipe
Farm Country’s Cornbread Recipe
Green Smoothies
We’re Going Places (Literature Resources – Dr. Seuss)
For Teachers and Parents – A Must Read Article
Interdisciplinary Math and Music Activity for
ECE and Elementary Children
Middle School Word Puzzles
Let’s Go on an Animal Safari!

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

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Springtime Hands On Learning for PreK – Grade 8

Welcome to Springtime at American Montessori Consulting

Visit Spring/Summer 1998. and Spring/Summer 1999. These newsletters were recently revised.

A sampling of what is featured in the 1998 issue appears below:

• interdisciplinary lessons involving shape, color, science and math.

• new color gradient learning ideas

• Butterflies – Lessons and Observations

• categorize gems according to color.

• lessons in shapes and mathematics for middle school students

Visit Springtime Celebrations to access the following:

Gardening & Other Springtime Nature Activities
and Theme Lesson Planning

• Ampersand Press – Games and Wildlife Stamps

• Bird-watching with Kids

• Introducing a Bird Feeder

• Growing Your Own Herbs and Cooking with Your Children

• Childsake – Nature and the Environment

• Farm Country General Store – Open Pollinated Seeds

• Fun Felt Newsletter Article Loaded with Free Butterfly Lesson Planning Ideas

• Fun Felt – Science Theme Lesson Planning with Felt

• Free Birdhouse Plans and Patterns

• Free Gardening Tips and More

• Free Information Source – Seashells for Classified Reading Exercises

• Free Lesson Planning Butterfly Links

• Garden Artisans – Newsletters, Projects and More

• Garden Forever for Gardeners of All Ages and Abilities

• Joyful Noise – Theme Related Materials – Wonderful Selection of Science Materials

• Lab Essentials, Inc. – Microscopes for Science Investigational Studies

• Nature’s Workshop Plus!

• Priority Montessori Materials – Hands On Science

• Schoolmasters.com Science Kits and Activities

• Spring Gardening with Children – Make a Tepee (Free Instructions)

• Wildflowers – Free Lesson Planning Ideas

Springtime Art Activities

• allartsupplies.com- For School and Home Classrooms

• Chinaberry.com – Find the Perfect Nature and/or Springtime Theme Books

• Creative Care – Ideas Books (Jenny’s Spring Crafts)

• Free Making Art from Seashells Activity

• Free Seashell Painting

• Nature’s Workshop Plus

Holidays

• Paper Mache Pinata

• Celebrating Cinco de Mayo at The Holiday Zone

• Lesson Plan – Subtopic – Cinco de Mayo

• A Unit Study Lesson Plan About Mexico in?Spanish

• Cinco de Mayo ~ Excellent Background Information

• Cinco de Mayo Recipes

• Creative Care – Ideas Books (Jenny’s Crafts)

• Free Mother’s Day History and Activities

• History of Memorial Day

• Memorial Day

• Free Father’s Day Projects

• Free Easter History and Activities

• Free Passover Ideas

Happy Spring!!

Heidi
http://www.amonco.org

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February is Bird Watching Month

Help children and teens develop a new hobby and learn about biology in the process.  Use the information provided by Diana Ruark of Nature’s Workshop Plus!,  Dale Gausman of the North American Montessori Center, and Sandy R. Wilbur, retired wildlife biologist specializing in ornithology, from Condor Tales to take you step-by-step through a series of integrated lesson presentations.

In Part I of the AMC Spring 2011 edition, Sandy answers general as well specific questions which will help you to understand the benefits of this hobby. You’ll learn how to get started, what types of products to buy, and what pitfalls to avoid, to name a few. Sandy is also sensitive to the concerns educators may feel about presenting lessons on this topic.

“If you’re starting out not knowing birds yourself, you could feel intimidated trying to help others learn.  But, remember, even though
there are over 500 species of birds in the United States, there are probably not more than 25 or so common ones in any given area. And you already know a lot of types of birds, even if you don’t think you do. Most everyone recognizes crows, robins, blackbirds, doves, sparrows, hawks, woodpeckers, and “sea gulls.” Many of the birds you see are going to look similar to some of these that you know. With a very little study of a bird guide covering your region, you will find that although there are 50 “sparrows” in the country, only two or three of them will be found in your area or in the type of environment you will be looking in. Twenty hawks become only one or two you’re likely to see; most areas won’t have more than one type of dove or quail, etc.“

Sandy R. Wilbur  Copyright 2011

Diana Ruark of Nature’s Workshop Plus! also offers useful lesson planning information for helping your students appreciate nature in general, with an additional tip or two about birds and bird watching.  Click here for details. Diana provides you with resources and a useful book to help you with your nature planning lessons.

Last, but not least, in Part IV of this issue, Montessorian Dale Gausman leads you through the process of introducing a bird feeder to a group of children.  Besides offering suggestions on how to get started, Dale provides a list of materials and other resources you will need to ensure a successful set of lesson presentations.

Enjoy!
Heidi Anne Spietz
http://www.amonco.org
American Montessori Consulting

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The Study of Animals – Some Hands On Lesson Planning

The American Montessori Consulting website contains some hands on lessons about animals that you can use right now in your school and home classrooms.

In Part III, http://www.amonco.org/winter3/montessori_winter3.pdf of the AMC Montessori Hands On Newsletter, Montessorian Dale Gausman contributed the Acting Out How Animals Survive Winter exercise. This exercise will greatly aid children in their understanding of hibernation, adaptation, and other key science terms.

For additional information about how animals survive during the winter months, please visit Animals in the Winter – Links for Montessori Unit Study

Anna, from Wood, Etc., suggested that young children make Zebras that can be used in an Animal Safari unit study This project is indeed easy and inexpensive to make. Click here to download the instructions for this and other general hands on exercises.

To plan a unit study about wild animals please visit Let’s Go on an Animal Safari!

Enjoy!
Heidi
http://www.amonco.org

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Let’s Go on an Animal Safari!

Use the Montessori matching picture, missing letter and classified exercises to help young children compare and contrast various animals. See Fall Newsletter for a discussion with pictures of how these exercises are used to present lessons in a foreign language.

Next, visit Coyote Creek Productions to learn more about a very special Animal Safari Series: A Learning Adventure, offered by Coyote Creek. Below, is a snippet of a review from Montessori Resources – 2010 edition

Children in a Montessori learning environment use classified reading cards to identify and categorize different animals. Such exercises sometimes focus on helping the child learn about each animal’s habitat, physical characteristics, and relationship to other animals. The Coyote Creek Animal Safari series will bring this learning to life.

“The following topics are covered in the Animal Safari Series: A Learning Adventure.

Vol. 1 “WILD WORLD HABITATS”
Vol. 2 “ANIMALS OF THE AMAZON”
Vol. 3 “BORN IN A BARNYARD”
Vol. 4 “CREEPY CRITTERS”
Vol. 5 “TONGUES, TAILS, AND SCALES”
Vol. 6 “ANIMALS AND MAN”
Vol. 7 “WILD WETLANDS”
Vol. 8 “EXPLORATION DINOSAUR”

Students will be captivated with Karla Majewski’s presentation. In Volume 1, students learn about five special animals, each from a different habitat. These animals live with Karla and her family in her private zoo. A group of young children are nestled close to Karla, intently listening to her entertaining presentations. Karla invites the students to handle the different animals and ask questions. She uses humor and imagination when describing how each animal survives in a unique habitat.” Click here for additional information about Coyote Creek’s Animal Safari.

For additional animal themed lesson planning ideas and resources , visit the following links:

Earth’s Kids – Featuring Wild Animals!

Go Fish for Wildlife These beautifully designed games can be adapted for individual use.

Click here for an Amazing Collection of Games and Wildlife Stamps

Fun Felt offers colorful Wild Animal Felt Figures

Visit AMC Montessori Grammar Bingo Game Using an Animal Safari Theme

Finally, invite children to make their own animal themed books. See Make Your Own Reading Book – Part 1
and

Make Your Own Reading Book – Part 2
Enjoy!
Heidi Anne Spietz

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