As we embrace the warmer weather, the Montessori children have been working on some very exciting projects! This month Aisling Daniels and Lynda Mahon share a "learning story" from the Montessori.
This month in Montessori our children are learning all about gardening life cycles. The children were thrilled to plant their very own indoor garden and had complete input into where the garden should be located and how it should be decorated.
We also learnt a very important story about Sid the Seed.
Sid is a seed who feels quite content and happy living in his underground home with a caterpillar and a spider. He has no longing to venture out into the unknown world outside. However his friends, the spider and the caterpillar leave their home one by one to embark on a journey to experience the big, outside world. Sid is now alone until he finally decides to grow up and leave his home to find new adventures in the outside world. So he soaks up enough water and with the rays of the sun glittering above his hole, he starts to grow until he finally breaks through the ground to the outside and grows into a tall tree.
This beautiful rhyming story lends itself to multiple teaching points. It can be a great introduction to kick off a unit on plants or for use with a counterpart non-fiction book to help children identify elements of fiction and non-fiction.
The story also serves to be a source of inspiration for little ones who are waiting to grow up. Best summed up in the words of author Daniel Pagan, “I feel that my story is special, engaging and unique. Children want to learn, to grow! When you are so small, you look towards big things and you dream about being in new places. I feel that my story inspires young readers to let their imaginations run wild. More importantly, my story will show young children that they are a masterpiece waiting to happen.”
For our Montessori children, gardening facilitates team building and promotes communication skills. Planning a garden, planting the seeds and watching them grow give kids a sense of purpose and responsibility. Making sure that the plants get enough fertilizer, water and sun fosters mindfulness. The concepts learned while gardening, and sensory play with compost and using gathered water, can imbue in kids a deep respect and responsibility for taking care of our planet.