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Online Newsletter Issue No. 11 
Winter 2013

Happy New Year! January is well on her way, and thankfully, the days are already getting longer in preparation for spring. The Cincinnati Montessori Society Board of Directors is working excitedly on final arrangements for our 50th Anniversary Conference and Gala celebration on March 23rd. We are so delighted with our presenters and exhibitors, many who are nationally known, and often appear at the American Montessori Society's National Conferences.

For those teachers who are unable to get away to far-flung Orlando this year, we are offering an unbelievable array of workshops, at a very affordable cost. In addition, the Northern Kentucky Convention Center is within walking distance of several affordable hotels. For more details on hotels offering a special rate for our Conference and Gala participants visit our website.

The Gala, Montessori, Merlot & Memories, promises to be a wonderful reunion of Montessorians, from years past and present. It will be a celebration of kinship among many, bonded by the strength and work of an amazing woman, Maria Montessori. We can each celebrate our participation in the Montessori history of Cincinnati, and enjoy food, wine, and music with our friends and colleagues.

We hope to see you at these very special events. Early Bird registration is open now for the conference and space is limited for the Gala (requires a separate registration and fee), so be sure to make your reservation early. Come be a part of this wonderful reunion of kindred spirits, and celebrate your participation in one of the most important movements of the 20th and 21st Centuries!


Julia Preziosi
CMS President


CMS Member Schools: You are our history - Be part of our display

A Timeline of Montessori Education in Cincinnati will be on display at our Annual Spring Conference, but we need your help!

The Cincinnati Montessori Society would like to celebrate the diversity and history of our Montessori Schools. We invite all of our past and current member schools and training programs to create a poster of their school's history. These posters will be displayed chronologically during our  annual conference on March 23, 2013 at the Northern Kentucky Convention Center and will also be on display for our 50th Anniversary Gala at The Metropolitan Club in the evening. We hope that your school would be willing to participate to create a poster and share the history of your school or Teacher Education program.

If you are interested in participating and sharing your school's history at our CMS conference please create a poster with the following criteria:

  • The poster must be on foam or tri-fold board and must not be larger than 36" x 48"
  • The poster must include your program's name, the year it began and your timeline/history through the years
  • If you are planning on making a poster, please email Jill Wilson at with the program's name, the date you opened your doors, a contact person and phone number.
  • Posters may be brought to the Northern Kentucky Convention Center on Friday, March 22, 2013 from 4-7pm or March 23 by 8:00am.
Traditional Versus Montessori: From a Mom of Both

By: Leisa Moore


Leisa Moore is currently a Kindergarten teacher in the public school system. She has two children that went through traditional schools and two children who attended Montessori from ages three through eighth grade. Leisa recognizes the importance of education and has had the opportunity to witness many different educational programs. Here she describes some of the main differences she has noticed now that her children are all adults in how their educations shaped them as they grew.




As a parent and an educator, I have found myself comparing my four children to each other throughout their entire lives. You are not supposed to do that, right? I think there may only be a few parents that admit it is nearly impossible not to and even fewer who admit to doing it, such as myself.

When they were very young, there was not much to compare. Our three girls and one boy were basically raised the same until the journey of education began. Unfortunately we were living in a southern state that had approximately five Montessori schools in the entire state...none within a reasonable driving distance for our family. A move back north occurred when the youngest two were blessed to be young enough to embark on a Montessori education and our family had several excellent schools to choose from.

As the older two started their educational career in our local traditional public system, the younger two embarked not only into an educational expedition but a multi-faceted venture as well. While my older two daughters developed many talents and strong attributes, it became apparent rather early that the quality of education was something that was and would continue to be, unfairly compared. Montessori education in itself is an ongoing example of educational excellence...focusing on the whole child and their ultimate place in our world. Being "life-long learners" was what ended up setting my children far apart.

Everywhere we went, other adults, whether they were parents or childless, constantly remarked on the maturity level, respectfulness and ability to communicate in a very precise manner of my youngest two children. When church or family obligations arose, the younger ones usually viewed them as challenges and opportunities. During trying times, they were able to exhibit behavior that indicated deep caring and compassion. I remember thinking that the most noticeable difference was the ability to problem solve. During the younger two children's teen years, employer after employer sought out my husband and myself to marvel at the positive qualities and well-developed traits they possessed. Unfortunately, I could assume very little credit. Each time a compliment came my way, I would think "Montessori".

As all four continue on their life voyage, I know they will all be successful and productive members of society. I also know the youngest two have an advantage due to what occurred between year three of their lives until the end of eighth grade and that will continue to serve them in ways I know they have yet to experience.

Staying Active in Winter

By: Becky Monahan

Mercy Montessori Teacher Assistant

M.Ed Elementary Education

Red Cross WSI


As I write this, the snow has fallen, Christmas day is behind us and the winter months are ahead of us. So the question presents itself to us; how can we stay active and incorporate movement into our daily lives with our children? As an educator and a parent, it is paramount to ensure that our children stay active on a daily basis, no matter the outside temperature.

There is evidence that physical activity has a positive impact on people both physically and mentally. Physical activity and movement can improve blood flow and oxygen to the brain, improve mental clarity, and positively affect the portion of the brain responsible for learning and memory. There is also evidence that shows movement can improve connections between nerves in the brain, thus improving attention and information-processing skills. Exercise builds strong bones and muscles, decreases the likelihood of developing obesity and risk factors for type II diabetes and heart disease, and can reduce anxiety and depression, (National Association for Sport and Physical Education; So, how can we get out and get moving when the weather is cold and motivation may be low? There are many ways in Cincinnati to get out and enjoy the beauty that our area of the country has to offer.

 The Cincinnati Parks, Hamilton County Parks, the Cincinnati Zoo, and the initiative are wonderful resources for finding ways to stay active indoors and outdoors during the winter months. The Cincinnati Parks have an "Explore Nature" series that incorporates indoor and outdoor activities. The  Hamilton County parks are wonderful places to explore outdoor activities. There is a tab on their website that informs interested outdoor enthusiasts where residents can cross country ski, hike, outdoor ice skate, sled ride, and ice fish. The Cincinnati Zoo has activities for people to stay active during the winter months such as their Youth, Family and Adult programs. In addition to this, the initiative "Let's Move" suggests that people get involved in an initiative called "America's Move to Raise a Healthier Generation of Kids" through healthy eating and exercise.

Maria Montessori observed the benefits of movement in children. She dedicated entire chapters to the study and observation of movement incorporated in the classroom and outdoors. In her book, "The Discovery of the Child" she titled chapter 5 "Education in Movement". The child passes through an epoch of their lives which is the entering into the harmonious working of their nerves and muscles together. In the Montessori classroom, movement is just part of the work. A child carries a tray with the work from the shelf, to their work place, does the work, then returns the work to the shelf. Working on rugs on the floor also engages the movement of the child. By observing a child it "makes it obvious that the development of his mind comes through his movements" (Montessori, 1984).

I am fortunate to work in a school that ensures that movement and exercise are part of the daily curriculum. The children are in the classroom moving as part of their work morning, are involved in gym, music and art, are swimming weekly, and have a beautiful play set to enjoy. The younger children actually begin their day on the playground so that their minds and bodies are physically ready to begin their work cycle once they enter the classroom. In addition, there are extra-curricular activities and sports for the children. As educators and parents, it is a beneficial goal to ensure that children have access to sports, extra-curricular activities and are encouraged to incorporate movement into their daily lives since "movement has a great importance on mental development itself" (Montessori, 1984). 


Montessori, Maria (1984) The Absorbent Mind
Montessori, Maria (1967) Discovery of the Child
USA Today, (2010) Study: Physical activity can boost student performance

The Cincinnati Montessori Society is a non-profit organization whose mission is to bring together parents, teachers and schools in order to promote and support the Montessori philosophy. It is governed by a volunteer board of trustees of Montessori parents, teachers, students, administrators and others interested in supporting Montessori education. If you are interested in serving on the board or have talents to share, please contact us.
Each year, as we vote in new board members, we examine how we are serving our customers and what else we can do to support and promote Montessori Education in Cincinnati. Your feedback is very  important to us - comments, compliments and critiques!
  • What do you like and/or dislike about our service?
  • What ideas do you have to make our organization better?
  • What areas do you think are important for CMS get involved in?
Please send us your thoughts.
In This Issue
Display Your School's History at the CMS Conference
Traditional Versus Montessori: From a Mom of Both
Staying Active in Winter
Conference: Early Bird Registration Now Open!
The New School Montessori Hosts Education-based Speaker Series with trueTHEATRE
Executive Board Members

Julia Preziosi, M.Ed.


Vice President
Heather Gerker, M.Ed.

Susan Flaspohler, M.Ed.
Membership Secretary
Meri Fox
Recording Secretary
Valerie Dyas, M.Ed.

The Cincinnati Montessori Society is a non-profit organization whose mission is to bring together parents, teachers, and schools in order to promote and support the Montessori philosophy. It is governed by a volunteer board of trustees, comprised of Montessori parents, teachers, students, administrators and others interested in supporting this method of education.

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CMS Annual Spring Conference
Early Bird Registration NOW OPEN!
Ohio Montessori Alliance Invites You... 
Ohio Montessori Alliance
The Ohio Montessori Alliance (OMA) is a diverse group of people who long for a more compassionate, equitable and sustainable world. Believing children & young adults have the potential to transform humanity, and that Montessori education is critical to nurturing this possibility, we've committed to work together to ensure access to quality Montessori education for all children. Everyone is welcome to join OMA and there is no membership fee. 

Recognizing YOU as an agent of change, and valuing your immediate experience in Montessori education, we invite you to join our efforts.

Good with social media? Want to share your thoughts about Montessori education? Do you have ideas for ways our community can support you, as Montessori students? Interested in collaborative efforts? Inspired to lead change? Creative or artistic? There are so many ways you can get involved and contribute!!!

Please email
Laureen or call (814)327-5371 to learn more.
Montessori Community Calendar

Professional Development Workshop Opportunities, Conferences, and more!

The New School Montessori Hosts Education-based Speaker Series with trueTHEATRE
submitted by Ann Baumgardner

This year began a wonderful partnership between trueTHEATRE and The New School Montessori. In November, The New School Montessori hosted the first of many trueTHEATRE events geared specifically to the world of education.

Jeff Groh and Dave Levy created trueTHEATRE in 2010 with themes ranging from trueFear, and trueHunger to trueCincinnati and trueMischief. Their speakers have included doctors, authors, comedians, moms and others who have unique perspectives or remarkable life experiences.

Jeff Groh is also a teacher at The New School Montessori. Jeff and TNSM director, Eric Dustman, worked together to create this education-focused series to remind us that, whether in a classroom or merely in the school of life, we are all lifelong learners. In the tradition of trueTHEATRE, we brought together a variety of people with inspiring stories that built community, encouraged discussion, and reminded us that we ALL have stories to tell with unique insights and broad appeal. Five individuals told 10 to 15 minute personal and true stories (without notes) based on the theme of the evening, trueCOMMUNITY. Speakers included Peter Block - Author of several best selling books including The Abundant Community: Awakening the Power of Families and Neighborhoods, Dr. Patric Leedom - one of the original administrators of The New School Montessori and professor of education at Shawnee University, Alena O'Donnell - Board President of CISV (an International Peace Education Organization), Ceara Thalinger - Parent and teacher at The New School Montessori, and Marcus Goodman - a 6th grade student at TNSM, a talented poet, an aspiring actor, and an all-around great kid!

Their next event will be on April 20 at 7PM with the theme to be announced later. For more information, contact The New School Montessori. 

Have Something to Share?

Are you a CMS member school? Does your school have an event coming up or other news to share? Tell us the exciting things happening at your school - we'd love to include it here!

Space is limited so contact us soon if you are interested.
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