//Follow the Child

Follow the Child

 

Follow the Child—into self-integration and understanding of life.

Follow the Child—into appreciation and enjoyment of living.

Follow the Child—into a society in which that which distinguishes us as    individuals contributes to our common cause as human beings.

The children have returned to campus.

The children have returned to campus.

The stated purpose of Northwoods Montessori is “to provide a foundation for life-long learning which enhances personal integration and understanding of interdependence.”

 

A. M. Joosten, Montessori Teacher Trainer, encouraged his students with words preserved in a pamphlet, Learning from the Child (A.M.I., 1963). He encouraged them by reminding them that the child lives “with an intensity for which we might well envy him.”

Elementary children sing a song from last year's repertoire of favorites, led by a classmate.

Elementary children sing a song from last year’s repertoire of favorites, led by a classmate.

While working with the child, he pointed out, “we,” the child’s parents and teachers, learn to “become like the child” and “strengthen and enrich our own lives with the lessons of his life.”

Pamela Baumbarger returns to Northwoods to revive our Infant/Toddler program, the AMI Assistants to Infancy. Here she returns from a walk outside with a child in a stroller.

Pamela Baumbarger returns to Northwoods to revive our Infant/Toddler program, the AMI Assistants to Infancy. Here she brings a child back from a walk outside.

 

“Only the child, and especially the very young child,  . . . builds the adult and is the adult’s foundation,” Joosten reminded. “Education has to offer to the child . . . all the riches mankind has gathered and developed. They—offered and used by the child as means to fulfill his mission—then become also integrated parts of his integrated being and means of integration.”

The very young child, listening and learning everything around her.

The very young child, listening and learning everything around her.

The school year has begun at Northwoods Montessori.  Friday, August 9, Elementary children (the 6-12 year-olds) dropped in to see the renewed environments and greet their teachers.

A handshake with the teacher sets the tone for a friendly and respectful relationship.

A handshake with the teacher sets the tone for a friendly and respectful relationship.

 

 

Monday and Tuesday, new Primary children (the 3-6 year-olds) met their teachers and learned about the routine of their classrooms.  Wednesday, we were all back, adults and children, refreshed and ready to immerse ourselves again into the huge pot of experience, communication and fun that is “school.”

New friends work together to create something new.

New friends work together to create something new.

 

There was the joy of recognition along with the delight of meeting someone new, possibly someone with common interests and enthusiasms. This has been exciting—as has been the everyday activity to which we’ve returned, singing songs, reading stories, reveling in a long run on the soccer field.

Old friends can hardly believe they are in the same class.  Yippee!

Old friends can hardly believe they are in the same class. Yippee!

 

The sense of freedom running across a soccer field is just euphoric.

The sense of freedom running across a soccer field is just euphoric.

 

Old friends, now in the same class together, dig into an experiment at the lab table.

Old friends, now in the same class together, dig into an experiment at the lab table.

 

Giggles are a sign of fun.

Giggles are a sign of fun.

 

Parents Follow the Child and take satisfaction in his confident stride at arrivals.

Parents Follow the Child and take satisfaction in his confident stride at arrivals.

 

Old friends chat as they walk through the new grass.

Old friends chat as they walk through the new grass.

 

Old friends make a birthday treat together late morning.

Old friends make a birthday treat together late morning.

 

On Wednesday, August 7, our faculty and staff convened to launch ourselves again into our long run.  What do we each bring to the work?

A parent and a teacher greet each other at Friday morning Elementary Open House.

 

A parent and a teacher greet each other at Elementary Open House on Friday before the first day of class.

A parent and a teacher greet each other at Elementary Open House on Friday before the first day of class.

How do we interpret the words of our statement of purpose?

 

A group of children walk together, as a group, to the field to play as the Assistant supervises.

A group of children walk together, as a group, to the field to play as the Assistant supervises.

 

As we start and stop, lope along easily, pass the baton and breathe hard through moments of intense effort, we hope that this school year we will thoroughly and faithfully “Follow the Child;” that this will offer our children the means of becoming themselves and of embracing our shared and interdependent world; that one day all humanity will Follow the Child.

 

Aren’t we proud of our long tradition of stability and vision?

 

Children arrive on the Northwoods bus as they have year after year.

Children arrive on the Northwoods bus as they have year after year.

 

Of our beautiful, well-equipped classrooms?

 

 

Some of the Elementary Geography materials call beguilingly from a shelf by a window.

Some of the Elementary Geography materials call beguilingly from a shelf by a window.

 

Of the qualities of experience, dedication and varied interests in our faculty and staff? Of our wooded campus and its pine-scented morning air?  Yes, of course. Northwoods Montessori is a special place.

 

The third year in a Primary class is a great gift to a child, giving her the experience of leadership. It is only possible in a stable setting such as this.

The third or fourth year in a Primary class is a great gift to a child, giving her the experience of leadership. It is only possible in a stable setting such as this.

 

We who work here never forget, however, that the purpose, the joy and the beauty of Northwoods Montessori can best be seen in the children who are schooled and who school us here in this wonderful place.

 

A child sees someone encumbered with bags and offers to lift an obstacle---a thoughtful gesture.

A child sees someone encumbered with bags and offers to lift an obstacle—a thoughtful gesture.

 

Follow our blog this year and Follow the Child with us.

 

Sipping the morning air, Gail lurks with a camera at the ready, so she can capture a moment when the nobility, the joyfulness, the open fascination of a child presents itself.

Sipping the morning air, Gail lurks with a camera at the ready, so she can capture a moment when the nobility, the joyfulness, the open fascination of a child presents itself.

2017-11-14T22:22:45+00:00By |Early Education|