In my post Starting Montessori Children’s House Part 1 I spoke about my eldest daughter’s Montessori school journey so far. So, where are we at now? She officially starts in her new Montessori class this Wednesday. Even though school started last week, the decision was made that she start a week later than the other children to make the transition easier. Last week however we visited her old classroom and her former director/teacher of the Infant/Toddler classroom) and she walked my daughter over to her new classroom for a visit to meet her new classroom directors (yes there is 2 of them) and to meet some of the other children and to just get a feel for her new classroom. This was so helpful and really made my four year old feel more comfortable with the transition and change.
How else are we preparing for the first day of school?
Meeting the Director as a family; This afternoon when school had finished for the day our family (my husband, myself and my two children) sat down with one of the directors from my daughter’s new classroom for a chance to ask any questions and to run through the process of the first day of school and to show my daughter where to put her bag, hat and shoes and where the toilets are and where the children play and have lunch. My daughter was able to have a proper look around the rooms inside and outside whilst there was no children there to give her that time to herself. This also gave the director a chance to meet our family and to talk with my daughter before she starts.
Establishing a better morning/evening routine;
These routine cards are a printable from Be A Fun Mum
A space at home to store hats, bags and shoes. These shelves are very similar to the ones at my daughter’s new classroom which is to store bags and shoes. Hats are hung on hooks just above the shelves. In our space I have a basket set up for each of my children to put their hats and sunglasses.
A pocket calendar. My four year old knows the days of the week and the seasons. She now wants to know all about months of the year. She wants to know everyone’s (family and friends) birthday month. In the above picture she is setting up the calendar for the month of February. These cards are laminated. We put a small sticker on the day that she starts school. She loves this idea and she was able to count down the days until school started for her. She wanted to know the day, date and month.
We have this teaching clock set up in my children’s play/learning space and it sits on the wall at their level for easy reading. My four year old has been trying to read the time for while now. She wanted to know leading up to starting school; what time will we leave in the morning, what times does she start school and what time will I pick her up. You can now apparently get this teaching clock version in watch form.
Read and re-read this book Jack Goes to Montessori School which is about a boy named Jack who attends a Montessori school classroom for 3-6 year olds.
The first day of school process is for us to take my daughter to the classroom where we sign her in and meet her teacher who then proceeds to take my daughter to put her belongings away and she enters the classroom for the morning, approx 1-2 hours to start for the first week or so. There is a waiting room made available for parents whose children, like mine will only be starting her school days for 1-2 hours each day initially.
When she is ready over the weeks of this school term, her time in the classroom increases to 3 hours each morning (9-12 midday) each day for 5 days each week. Some children only go 3 or 4 days a week.
Some photos of my four year old in her former toddler classroom;
It’s a bit sad that I will no longer be able to sit with her in the classroom like I was able to in the infant/toddler class but I can see how excited my four year old is to be going to Big Girl School as she calls it.