Monday 25th July 2016
Philanthropy at MMS
In the second week of Term 3, it has been a busy time with our philanthropic outreach program. We have sent off x 8 boxes to Andrea Mahiepala at the Wanarn Remote Community School in the Western Desert. Additionally, we have managed to assemble a further x 10 boxes of clothes, books, stationary and very old Montessori equipment to be sent to the Manila Montessori School through an organisation which is called P.A.C.E. This is run by a wonderful lady called Lerma Ung. Lerma also came to talk to the Cycle 3 students about ‘Needs and Wants’ and spoke to the students about the outreach work of our School.
MMS has contributed over the years extensively to the Montessori Schools in Kuala Lumpur, Kiwirrkurra Ngaanyatjarra Lands School; Torres Strait Montessori School; Redfern Montessori Early Learning Centre, all through the MCF (Montessori Children’s Foundation) as well as a schools’ program which is being aided by one of our Brighton parents, Eve, in Switzerland. Finally, we have shipped over the years, approximately half a container of items/boxes to the Alpha Montessori School in Vientiane, Laos where we have established a Library and a Cycle 2 classroom.
We would like to continue to offer our teachers the opportunity of teacher exchange/ student teacher placements and visits so that we can grow the global Montessori village.
Sarah Jane Watson
Experiment in Cycle 4
Last Monday night saw a large number of Cycle 4 parents experience the effects of a mainstream lesson about Shakespeare in the Brighton Hall. These parents were able to compare mainstream techniques and attitudes with Montessori techniques and attitudes and they were asked to examine how they felt in the two different systems.
This was an information night with a difference, as the parents were asked how they felt, whether they were engaged, whether their minds had wandered to think about other things and also about how easy it was to hide and escape when sitting in rows of desks. Some felt anxious about being picked on and another disliked being unable to see their colleagues further back in the class.
Later in the evening they were then immersed in a Montessori setting and expressed the sensation of being at once engaged and connected, of being acknowledged as a human being who has rights and valuable opinions, but the parents also felt the responsibilities incumbent on each student as they were accountable all the time; felt connected to their peers all the time and were working so much harder in the areas of problem-solving, creativity, collaboration, and time management – all 21st century skills. The parents were introduced to the fact that statistics show that 20% of everything currently taught in most secondary schools is already known by students as teachers don’t often seek to find out what students already know, whereas Montessori teachers take students from where they are and take them further. They were also introduced to Higher Order Thinking or HOT where the concepts of analysis, synthesis and evaluation are the main focus of all learning in outstanding education – unlike the predominantly lower order skills of massive recall of facts and remembering and applying knowledge. It was an interesting experiment and one where we could all feel that we were working harder in the Montessori environment, despite the perceived freedom and inclusive attitudes.
Mid-Year Concert reminder!
All the Cycle 2 and Cycle 3 students have been practising hard for the Mid-Year Concert ‘Oola La’ and tomorrow afternoon and Wednesday all day they will be at Kingston Hall rehearsing so remember to pick up your child from there!
“Do not erase the designs the child makes in the soft wax of his inner life.” Maria Montessori