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March 2012

Come see our show!

What’s left?

Joust

For your calendar: Gala postponed

The Spring Gala scheduled for March 24 has been postponed. New details will follow.

The Montessori School of Mauldin’s 3rd through 7th graders will be performing a short musical, “Joust,” from King Arthur’s Court. Come see the show at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, March 28, at the Mauldin Cultural Center. Tickets are $5 each. Proceeds support the upcoming Brennan Hall field trip to CSI Camp through the Youth Learning Institute. For ticket and show information, see a Brennan Hall student, visit the main office, or call 288-8613. For camp information, visit http://www. clemson.edu/yli/pages/ csi.php

Annual Art Show

Save the date for the annual art show, 2-3:30 p.m., Sunday, May 6.

Water park party

Our second annual Summer Splash Party will be held from 5:457:45 p.m., Thursday, May 31, at Discovery Island Water Park in Simpsonville. Last year’s party was a huge success and a lot of fun. Join us again this year as we rent out the entire water park just for friends and family of the Montessori School of Mauldin. Tickets will go on sale soon.

Auction fundraiser coming soon

There will be an end-of-the-year auction featuring items made by your children. Details to follow.

For new and returning students

Registration applications being accepted

R

egistration is well under way for the 2012/2013 school year. Registration packets can be picked up in the main office. For       more information or to schedule a tour, please call 288-8613.

Montessori School of Mauldin offers classes for infants, toddlers, primary (3- to 5-year-olds), and lower elementary (Bergamo) in the main buildings. Upper elementary and middle school classes are housed up the hill at Brennan Hall.


2—Mauldin Montessori Newsletter Infant environment We would like to welcome Max to our class. Max has a big sister, Sara, in Toddler II. We have started a new music disc, Gaia—Sing and Sign for Fun. Also, we are reading ‘Bath Time Fun’ and ‘Storybook Rhymes’ this month. We are trying to learn how to sit and listen. Fisher and Owen have started joining us for floor time. They sit in the Bumbo seats and watch Henry, Max, and Miles play. Sometimes they are placed in the yellow circle pool with toys. Miles and Henry are working on saying words: Daddy, ga-ga, Ma-ma, hi, and bye-bye. We also love to point at everything. Parents, if you would like to bring your baby’s favorite book or CD to share, please feel free! The children love it all. Thank you.

King family donates new aquarium

Come by the main building to check out the new fish tank. Thank you, King family!

Toddler I, Ms. Julie, Ms. Brenda, and Ms. Sophia We are having a wonderful March so far as we say goodbye to winter and hello to spring. We have had lots of fun making our shamrocks and collages. This month we welcomed Bella to our class from the Infant room and we are missing our sweet Addison and Weston as they have moved up to Toddler II. We have a lot of exciting things planned for the spring. Thank you to our parents for sharing books from home on your child’s Book Day. It’s a great day in Toddler I. Toddler II, Ms. Luz, Ms. Doris, Ms. Antoinette, Ms. Deborah Welcome to March with Toddler II. First things first, thank you to all of our parents. Your work and dedication really helped make our Valentine’s Day celebration a huge success! We have completed our initial presentation of the alphabet and numbers 0-20. We have studied shapes, patterns, and textures as well. Toddler II students have also enjoyed experimenting with various media for art and craft projects. Thank you to everyone who wore green for our St. Patrick’s celebration on March 16. What’s to come: We will continue to review our letter sounds, numbers, shape recognition, and explore more with patterns and sequencing. Students will be completing a decoupage project and experimenting with papier-mâché. How you can help: Verbally review your child’s daily activities. Ask your child to identify numbers for you and give you the sounds for letters of the alphabet. Reminders: Please be sure that your child has a weather appropriate change of clothing (labeled, please). Please check the write-on board by the door each day for items that your child may need. And please keep Ms. Carmen in your thoughts as she recovers from her surgery. Thank you. Background, this page: “In the Ocean,” watercolor and markers, by Ian (Ms. Beth)

Ms. Mary’s activity class The month of February ended so quickly. Our Valentine’s Day party and card exchange was a huge success. We appreciate your support, moms and dads. If you look around the school you can tell spring is here with all of the flowers in bloom and the bird song. The elementary science fair was March 7. This is always good for the children; they enjoy learning about science from the big kids. On Feb. 21 we went up to Brennan Hall for the ALS field day. This was so much fun, the children loved it even if it was cold! During this month we celebrated St. Patrick’s Day. Also we will talk about flowers. We would like to thank Ms. Lisa (Spanish), Ms. Linda (art) and Ms. Elizabeth (music). We also thank Ms. Vanessa Ayers from the Greenville County Library. She brings us such wonderful story books, creative movement games and dances for our class. Our show-and-tell program is doing well. The children look forward to standing up in front of their classmates and showing the item that they brought. You should hear the wonderful stories that they tell. So far Jackson has been the best! We are getting ready for Easter so check your folders daily for all upcoming activities and events for the month of April. Thank you for the donations to ALS! The fundraiser was a great success thanks to you.


3—Mauldin Montessori Newsletter Ms. Lydia and Ms. Ceomi’s gym activity class March definitely came in like a lion. Every day we denote the weather forecast by marking our calendar with a lion or a lamb. So far the lion days far exceed the lamb days. Let’s hope for lamblike weather as the month marches on. We’ve got a jump start on our spring planting. The kids have planted a variety of seeds in the gym ranging from a sunflower to lettuce. Each and every day the kids come in so excited to see the progress of their plants. We have had some fabulous guests come to the gym: Rosy, Tom, and Pascal! Our dear friend Ana’s parents brought in her pet chameleon, Pascal. We learned that girl chameleons do not change colors like male chameleons. They only turn shades of green. We got to see firsthand that the eyes of a chameleon can go in different directions simultaneously. We also had another very tiny green visitor, a leprechaun. He brought us a pot of gold to use for counting. At the beginning of the month we celebrated the birthday of one of the best known children’s book authors: Dr. Seuss. We went Seussical! We had real green eggs and ham and for dessert a special green egg and ham made from candy and pretzels. Most everyone liked both the green eggs and ham. Some only liked the ham and others only liked the eggs. But everyone loved the dessert! As I wrap this up I have to leave you with a quote from Dr. Seuss: “Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”

Spring flower collage, by Trevon (Ms. Beth)

Western Swallowtail and White Admiral classes, Ms. Beth and Ms. Sadia Welcome Spring! We are observers this month-observing the seasonal changes (and wardrobe changes) the new season brings. The classes are looking for the arrival of robins, blooming flowers, and clouds ... all of which we have noted on the cultural activities calendar. It was a pleasure to meet with each family to discuss your children’s progress in the Montessori environment. If by chance you did not meet with me and desire to do so, please stop by or call (288-8613) to make an appointment. Congratulations to Chinnu on the birth of his new baby sister :) Afternoon Class News by Chloe and Faith: We have been doing lots of puzzle maps. We also learned the parts of an amphibian. “Amphibian” means “two lives” because they live part of their life as a tadpole in water and they become frogs and live on the land. We are reading Stuart Little. It was written by E.B. White who also wrote Charlotte’s Web. The best part so far was when Stuart got rolled up in a window shade and when Stuart went down the drain to get his mother’s ring. We look forward to reading it every day. Happy Spring!

Eastern Swallowtail and Red Admiral classes, Ms. Faria and Ms. Wynetta It’s hard to believe that we are already almost through March. February was very busy with our Valentine’s Day celebrations. The children really put in a lot of time, love, and effort in making the Valentine’s cards. I’m sure you all enjoyed it as much as Ms. Wynetta and I did. I must say, the card exchange went very smoothly. Children have been very busy practicing lessons and have their eyes set on the next “big” lesson. It is very rewarding to see the confidence and the burst of energy that the children are bringing into our environment. We have been busy studying about frogs, birds, pyramids, and have also talked about the Great Wall of China. We are now getting ready to talk about clouds in detail. The children have especially enjoyed hammering nails work. The children have been doing great with our “seasons” song. Our all-time favorite song is the “Bear Hunt.” Ms.Wynetta and I welcome Isabella, Samantha, Yazlynn, Emma, Rebecca and Julie. A big thank you to all our parents for playing such a big role in the ALS fundraiser. The

Spring flower collage, by Seth (Ms. Faria)


4—Mauldin Montessori Newsletter children really enjoyed the field day and are anxiously waiting for the next one. A big congratulations and thank you to our Brennan Hall students for a great event. Ms. Wynetta and I would also like to thank our Bergamo students for inviting us to their science fair. It was a great experience for all of us. A very happy birthday to all our children with February and March birthdays.

“In the Ocean,” watercolor and markers, by Conor (Ms. Jennifer)

Monarch part-time class, Ms. Jennifer and Ms. Lori With spring break over, our class is ready to “spring” into action. We have lots of fun crafts planned for the upcoming months and have already begun working on our “Under the Sea” themed window. The kids have had fun making lucky four-leaf clovers and rainbows for St. Patrick’s Day. Also coming up soon will be our annual strawberry patch field trip. Please see Ms. Jennifer or Ms. Lori for more information or to volunteer to help with crafts this year. In addition to our field trip, we also have to get ready for the big Easter egg hunt on Wednesday, April 4. Hopefully this year we won’t have to postpone because of rain! Anyone who can bring in plastic eggs for the event, please remember no candy or sweets inside the eggs. It’s hard to believe the year has gone by so quickly, but our plan is to enjoy the little time we have left as much as possible. If your child has a summer birthday, please see Ms. Jennifer to schedule a day before the end of the school year for a birthday celebration. Finally, a big happy birthday to our March/April birthday children: Faiz, Devan, Nava and Chase. Ms. Lydia and Mr. John’s after school kids Wow! We have been busy lately. Did everyone get a chance to see us on TV? If you didn’t you sure missed out. On President’s Day we took a field trip of all field trips. We caught Jack and Kimberly on Your Carolina at 10, which is where we made our first TV debut. Then we rushed to Spartanburg News Channel 7 for a tour of the news station. After that we had a lovely picnic and played. Lastly we took a tour of the Mauldin Fire Department on Miller Road. We’ve had a lot other fun field trips on Greenville County’s snow make up days and Montessori’s spring break. Please make sure to check the door and windows at the gym as well as your child’s folder, for updates on field trips and for other information. We don’t want your child to miss out on one minute of fun. I would like to quickly mention two girls who have left the after school program. Skylar and Natalia have been with us for a long time, but have become very busy with other extracurricular activities. We sure do love and miss these girls and wish them the best of luck the rest of the school year. Having said that I will end with a quote that is so fitting for our friends that come and go in the after school program. “Don’t cry because it’s over; smile because it happened.”

At right, after school kids pose behind the news desk at channel 7.


5—Mauldin Montessori Newsletter News from Ms. Maryann and Mr. John’s Bergamo II classroom Our month of March started with the preparation for the science fair. Each student worked hard on a project and very proudly presented it to parents and students. Below I have listed the names of each child’s science project. Lathika – “Popping Corns” Lida – “The Solar System” Socrates – “Cars Go Down the Ramp” Addison – “Electrical Circuits” Violette – “Invisible Ink” Grayson – “Heat Melts Ice” Emma – “Volcanoes” Katherine – “Cleaning Feathers” Ryan – “Water Nature” Grey – “Earthquakes” Xavier – “Turning Old Paper Into Usable Paper” Natalie – “Eye Location, Prey and Vision” Younger students are busy learning parts of a flower, long division, long multiplication, vertebrate and invertebrate animals, digestive system, skeletal system, compound words, and prefixes. The older students have started to read new novel, “James and the Giant Peach,” and they are very excited to watch a movie of their previous novel, “Mr. Popper’s Penguins.” They are also working on past participles; algebra; mean, median & mode; and country research. In the month of February, we had Xavier’s dad, Mr. Jeff, talking to the students about his experience in Afghanistan. He showed us pictures and rough conditions that he had to live in. Later, each student wrote in their journal about Mr. Jeff’s experiences. Big thanks to Mr. Jeff. On March 2, we had a bake sale for ALS. The third year students had a trip to Bi-Lo grocery store to buy the ingredients for the cookies. All age groups baked together goodies including brownies, sugar cookies, chocolate chip cookies, and oatmeal Craisins chocolate chip cookies. Some baked goodies were also donated by parents. Overall, we collected more than $500, counting donations. Many thanks to parents and students who bought baked goodies from us. On March 9, we had a guest speaker Mary Lou Jones from Greenville Council of Garden Clubs. She spoke to the third graders about trees and their needs. She also spoke to them about the Arbor Day contest where the third-year students get a chance to write a poem, a song, a painting, or story about trees. They will be judged on their originality and overall effectiveness of message. The Garden Club will also donate a tree to the school. We wish everyone Happy Spring!

Journal entries about Xavier’s dad, Mr. Jeff by Addison, grade 1 1. Mr. Jeff spoke of how much water. He had 8 bottles a day. 2. He rode on a chinook. 3. He never got a break. 4. He like the bee hut (sleeping shelter). 5. He helped the soldiers. 6. He works for Fluor. 7. He slept on a cot. 8. He gets a lot of sand storm. 9. He is surrounded with mountains. 10. He has to wait in line until all the soldiers get their food. 11. He likes to play basketball. by Lathika, grade 1 1. Mr. Jeff had 8 water bottles to drink every day. 2. Mr. Jeff went on a chinook its like a helicopter. 3. And Mr. Jeff’s company is called Fluor. 4. It was 120˚ F hot. 5. Mr. Jeff slept on a cot.


Brennan Hall News

Upper School News—the 4th-8th grades of Brennan Hall

We are sprinting into spring. Read all about it! We’ve had a busy end of winter and beginning of spring! The kids hand-made Valentines for nursing home residents. They turned out marvelous and the residents really enjoyed them. In February, we held out first ALS Field Day to bring awareness to how Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis can affect everyone, including athletes. We held the field day at Brennan Hall and invited everyone from Toddler II through Bergamo. The toddlers were adorable as they ran the obstacle course and threw balls through a hoop. Our class went to Master Kim’s World Class Tae Kwon Do and tested for our green stripes! Afterwards the kids were rewarded by a trip to get smoothies. We had master percussionist Chris Earle stop by and hold a percussion workshop. Chris works at the Fountain Inn Arts Academy and also performs with various bands. He brought a large array of percussion instruments, taught the class the origins of each instrument and let them try each one. The kids really enjoyed the steel drums, the conga drums, the Home Depot plastic bucket and the drum-set. It was a great experience for the class. That same morning we held our ALS fundraiser in the form of a coffee bar in the main building. The kids sold coffee and doughnuts

to the parents most of the morning. We ended up raising about $100. Then it was March and we had Science Fair! Read more about it below and on the following pages. We had a great time with the younger children coming through to learn from our students and we really appreciate all of the parents who came as well.

Get ready for our spring musical and field trip

What do swords and Boomwhackers have in common? Scratching your head? Right now we are ramping up with extra practices for our medieval musical romp, “JOUST!” It will be held at 7 p.m. next Wednesday, March 28, at the Mauldin Cultural Center. Tickets are available at the office or from a Brennan Hall student for $5. This is a fundraiser for our class’s trip to CSI Camp in May. Speaking of, our trip to CSI Camp is May 7-9. It’s in Pickens, S.C. We’ll learn CSI techniques and solve a ‘crime.’ A great combination of fun and science and the kids are really excited. And lastly—save the date! On May 31, the last day of school, we are having the Montessori School of Mauldin’s ‘Spring Sing.’

Science Fair

What did we learn from our research?

The Bergamo/Brennan Hall science fair was held March 7. Each student researched a topic and prepared a presentation. Here are our results. Ryan—Levitation

Magnets have an invisible force that is concentrated around their poles. I learned that different poles attract each other and similar poles repel each other. Although they can be of various shapes, and strengths, all magnets have the ability to attract and repel. I did this series of experiments to explore how magnets attract and repel other metallic objects. My goal was to make the Levitron top spin and hover above its base. I was able to show both attraction (Experiment 1) and repulsion (Experiment 2), but I was unable to master the Levitron.

Rader—Green Energy

Although kinetic energy made the highest voltage, I think that solar energy is the direction the planet is going in. We will then have a way to store massive amounts of solar energy to use for power when we need it. In the future solar energy might run everything in your house.


7—Mauldin Montessori Newsletter

Bryan—Wind Power

I repeated my windmill experiments several times. My goal was to find the windmill design that was best. I wanted to find out something about how wind speed relates to power generation. I was going to measure this by the brightness of the LED. I found out that if the windmill rotates clockwise, the LED will not light. Also it was hard to judge when it was brightest. I also found the windmill with the long blades seemed to work better than the windmill with the short blades. I learned how to set up the gear box, but will need to do further experiments with adjusting the gear ratios to find which setting is best and most efficient. I found it interesting that the windmill slows down when the rechargeable batteries are inserted. I found out that this is due to the fact that rechargeable batteries are weaker and have “ultra high capacitance.”

Natalia—DNA

I am still very interested in this topic and want to do more experiments about the programming code that is inside all living things. Today the exact bases of our DNA can be decoded in a lab. If all the bases are written down in order, it results in a gigantically long chain. Basic DNA structure is the same for all humans, yet each of us is different with our own unique DNA. Many doctors now believe that one day it will be possible to decode a person’s DNA and then treat their illness based on a precise understanding of their genetic characteristics. That would be really amazing to see.

Alex—Whirlpools

I found out that because of the earth’s rotation, moving air and water tend to form axes and spin around them. Although large whirlpools called maelstroms do exist. They are generally most dangerous to swimmers and small boats. They tend to swirl pretty slowly and a boat with a motor can usually steer away. The most famous whirlpool in the United States is at the bottom of Niagara Falls.

Jennifer—Cosmetics Griffin—Green Fuel

The purpose of this experiment was to find out about reliable, clean biofuels. I became interested in this idea because I like to build things that move on their own power, and I also did robotics for my science fair last year. My hypothesis was that my solar-powered train would be my most reliable vehicle. I based my hypothesis on my experience with the robots I have built. My hypothesis was that solar-powered vehicles would work the best. I could not have been more wrong. The salt-water car worked the best out of all three. The solar-powered train worked the worst. Even when in direct sunlight the train did not move at all. I may have a bad connection in the engine, or it could be that the strength of the sunlight during the month of February was not sufficient to charge the solar panel.

This project was a good introduction to how cosmetics are made. It was very interesting to learn about the amount of synthetic chemicals that are in regular makeup. I was surprised that citric acid was used in the making of cosmetics. I also enjoyed doing the fragrance survey. I did not expect that the boys in my class would prefer the fragrance of lavender over roses and peppermint. For my next project I plan to make oatmeal soap and oatmeal and honey facial masks.


8—Mauldin Montessori Newsletter Erick—Microscopic Life

I figured out that all organisms react to certain changes in the environment. The amount of filtered sunlight provided allows the euglena to make its food. To culture the other microorganisms, I had to set up a short food chain. The wheat grains are food for certain kinds of bacteria. The bacteria multiply and Chilomonas (a tiny flagellate) eat the bacteria. Then the paramecium and amoeba feed on the flagellates. The paramecium and amoeba prefer dim to moderate light, neutral or slightly alkaline water, and temperatures of 20 to 21 degrees C. Because it is difficult to maintain the short food chain, the organisms can only live for a very short period of time, in fact, some can only live for a couple of weeks! Most bacteria are quite harmless, in fact, some of them are helpful, for example, intestinal bacteria help us break down our meals. If it wasn’t for bacteria, we would be standing on a pile of dead matter! Also, I learned that protozoa play an important role in the life of mankind. They are important to the food chains of soils, oceans, and fresh water, upon which all people depend.

Lindsay—Mummification

Brady—Catapults and Trebuchets

The purpose of this experiment was to learn about ancient catapults. I wondered which ancient war machine, the catapult or the trebuchet, was the best working type-1 lever. My hypothesis was that the trebuchet would go the farthest, since it incorporates the fulcrum and counterweight principles into its design. I based my hypothesis on my research and on models. The trial for my catapult was very successful. The pink eraser and the acorn tied for 1st place with 10 feet. The mini bean bag flew 6 ½ feet. The ping pong ball came in last at 4 feet. The results for my Trebuchet were incomplete, but the ping pong ball did go 10 feet with 50 pennies of counterweight. I think that the trebuchet model will work the best once the support arm is repaired. I do plan to pull the cord very carefully in the future since this may have added to the difficulties with the support arm.

I became interested in the mummification process after studying ancient Egypt. I found a recipe for homemade “natron” in a library book and decided to make my own formulation. I choose fruit for this experiment because they are easy to carve. One thing I noticed was that the salt mix around the apples and zucchini got hard after a while. The zucchini was very shriveled and about half as skinny as when I started. You could even see his bones (they were toothpicks)! The hollowed out apple needed a little more time to mummify. I wrapped the mummified remains in gauze and packed them into decorated boxes.

Kevan—Frogs and Toads

I always thought that learning about frogs would be cool. I learned that frogs are a good part of the ecosystem on both sides of the food chain because frogs eat so many types of bugs that without frogs the world would have way too many bugs. The frogs also are important on the other side of the food chain. Snakes, bears, raccoons, and birds all eat frogs. Next time I work with frogs I would set up the tank differently than it is right now and see how the frogs would react. I might add more rocks or different places to hide. I might remove the plastic plant and see where they choose to hide the most. Also, I might add one more frog and see how that changes their behavior.


March 2012 newsletter, Montessori School of Mauldin