Newsletter Header
Online Newsletter Issue No. 21
Back to School 2015

Yes, it's back to school time! Can you believe it? It seems that each year that August rolls around, I'm surprised by how quickly the summer has gone. I hope you have had time to rest, relax, and re-energize for this school year!

The CMS Board for the 2015/16 school year has been planning for a fantastic year! Hopefully, you've heard the Spring conference announcement - we are all set to host Catherine McTamaney on Saturday, April 9th at the Kingsgate Marriott Conference Center at the University of Cincinnati (see below for more information). A call for presentation proposals will go out soon, stay tuned!

With my Presidency term coming to an end, Kristin Patterson will take over as President. Other new members of the Executive Committee include: Vice President; Meri Fox and Membership Secretary; Susan Scheibenzuber.

It has been an honor to serve the Cincinnati Montessori Society as President these last two years. I've enjoyed not only the professional partnerships we've created but also many of the personal (and hopefully lifelong!) friendships I have made. This board is amazing and as we continue to grow, I am confident CMS will prosper in our mission to fully support the Montessori philosophy.

I look forward to remaining on the CMS Board as Chair of the Conference planning committee and in other supportive roles.

Thank you!

Heather Gerker, M.Ed.
Past CMS President,  June 2013-June 2015

Saturday, April 9th 

Catherine McTamaney, EdD, is an award-winning Montessori teacher, former school director, and school consultant. Her writing appears in Montessori publications around the globe. Beloved by Montessori classroom teachers, teacher educators and parents around the globe, her books: "The Tao of Montessori," and "A Delicate Task," are found as frequently on bedside tables as on teacher-education required reading lists. McTamaney lives in Nashville, Tennessee, with her two children, where she serves as the Director of Undergraduate Education in the Department of Teaching and Learning at Vanderbilt University's Peabody College. Dr. McTamaney is additionally a member of the Social Computing Lab at the MIT Media Lab, where she directs the Wildflower Montessori project. Learn more about her here.

More conference details coming soon!
More Montessori Validation 
by Whitney Gleason

"For intelligences to become strengths, awakening them isn't enough. They need to be crystallized - a term used by Dr. Gardner, the "father" of the multiple intelligences. It causes the turning
from weak or average to strong that gives definite
form and direction to the smarts."

- Dr. Kathy Koch

I recently attended a speaking event in Cincinnati, not knowing much about the featured speaker. Dr. Kathy Koch was featured on fliers that announced she would be speaking about "multiple intelligences" to adults and their school-aged children. Dr. Koch speaks often around the U.S. and has authored many books, including "How Am I Smart?" She structures her speaking engagements around the type of audience attending. This one, as I have stated, was intended for both adults and children, and was nothing short of fascinating.

Need Book Ideas for your Classroom Library? 
The CMS Board Members created a list of suggestions for you!

For the 3-6 classroom:
  • "Have You Filled A Bucket Today?" by Carol McCloud and David Messing: Through vivid illustrations, this heartwarming book encourages positive behavior as children see how rewarding it is to express daily kindness, appreciation, and love. Bucket filling and dipping are effective metaphors for understanding the effects of our actions and words on others and ourselves.
  • "Duncan the Story Dragon" by Amanda Driscoll: Duncan keeps trying to read but accidentally sets his book on fire each time. This is a great story for kids with a developing sense of humor.
  • "The Princess and the Pony" by Kate Beaton: A great story about how getting something unexpected can sometimes be better than getting what we were hoping for.
  • "The Day the Crayons Quit" by Drew Daywalt: This book can be a good conversation starter and beginning conflict resolution skills. It is funny and clever, a great read before going back to school.
  • "Rude Cakes" by Rowboat Watkins: A bunch of desserts need to learn some manners! This book will get your child excited about practicing manners... just in time for school.

 For the 6-9 classroom:
  • "Emma is on the Air" by Ida Siegal: Including many Spanish phrases, this book follows a young Latina girl through her dreams of investigative journalism. It's an inspiring book for children who are dreaming of doing what they love.
  • "Emma's Poem: The Voice of the Statue of Liberty" by Linda Glaser: The story of the woman who wrote the sonnet from the Statue of Liberty. Children will learn all about the history of the statue and what she stands for.
  • "Woundabout" by Lev Rosen: A book about the positive side of change and challenging the norm. The main characters are likeable for young readers and the story is simple but engaging.

 For the 9-12 classroom:
  • "Seraphina and the Black Cloak" by Robert Beatty: A mystery book with twists and turns that is sure to captivate even wary readers. Seraphina is an honorable and true heroine, a great role model for an impressionable age.
  • "Circus Mirandus" by Cassie Beasley: This book includes a Man Who Bends Light and an invisible tiger. It's a story about magic and all that comes with it. Older readers will love this enchanting tale.
  • "Hoot" by Carl Hiaasen: A great read for children transitioning to a new school or program. The main character learns to overcome being the "new kid" by seeing the brighter side of things and learning that everything happens for a reason.
  • "Book Scavenger" by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman: A mystery story story for kids who love reading, as they main character does. Children will be delighted with the clues as they try to figure out the mystery before the end of the book.

Share the Love:
Peace Education Programs & 
the AMS Peace Table
by Ann Baumgardner

During the annual AMS conference, Kira Hinkle (6-9 teacher at The New School Montessori) sets up and runs the AMS Peace Table, as a member of the American Montessori Society‚€™s Executive Peace Committee. The Peace Committee works to support teachers and the greater Montessori community in educating children for peace, placing particular emphasis on humanitarian work, global citizenship and service learning.

The AMS Peace Table serves as a resource center for conference attendees to: practice presenting lessons with materials directly related to peace education, peruse book titles, and learn about service-learning and peace education initiatives from Montessori schools around the world. The center serves as a hub for educators committed to further implementing the study of peace in their classrooms.

The Twelve Points of the Montessori Method
(originally printed in the CMS newsletter, Winter-2000)

In the coming editions of the CMS newsletter, we will be featuring some "throwback" articles from years past. These articles will include favorites from teachers, children, and parents. We hope you enjoy reading these still-applicable articles!
  1. It is based on years of patient observation of child nature by the greatest educational genius Froebel.
  2. It has proved itself of universal education. Within a single generation it has been tried with complete success with children of almost every civilized nation. Race, color, climate, nationality, social rank, type of civilization - all these make no difference to its successful application.
  3. It has revealed the small child as a lover of work, intellectual work, spontaneously chosen and carried out with profound joy.
  4. It is based on the child's imperious need to learn by doing. At each stage in the child's mental growth, corresponding occupations are provided by means of which he develops his faculties.
  5. While it offers the child a maximum of spontaneity, it nevertheless enables the child to reach the same, or even higher level of scholastic attainment as under the old system.
  6. Though it does away with the necessity of coercion by means of rewarding and punishments, it achieves a higher discipline than formerly. It is an active discipline which originates within the child and is not imposed from without.
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. 
CMS Newsletter Staff

Content Editor: 

Layout Editor:
In this Newsletter
Cincinnati Montessori Society
on Facebook
CMS Facebook Like
Montessori Community Calendar

Professional Development Workshop Opportunities, Montessori School Open Houses, and more!

Job Board

CMS Board Member Spotlight 


Liz Walsh

Current School: Children's Meeting House Montessori,
6-9 Teacher

Years of Teaching: 
4 years

Why did you choose Montessori?
I had never planned on being a teacher, but instead was looking for a way to help the world.  I wanted children to have the tools necessary to be independent, discover the world, and challenge their thinking in a safe environment. I wanted it to be okay for kids to make mistakes and learn from them.  I wanted children to learn to resolve their conflicts so they can be peaceful and respectful citizens as adults.  Montessori brought to life all the things I envisioned that would help change the world.  In turn, it's brought me to life and helped me to grow into the person I wish my education had.

Why did you join the CMS board?
I joined the board because I was looking for ways to advocate for Montessori in my community.  Working with like-minded and passionate Montessorians has fed an entirely different part of my Montessori soul.

Favorite teaching moment: 
I have so many favorite moments, but the best one happened when I had to conquer one of my fears--heights.  My class was at Camp Kern and we had the opportunity to go zip-lining. I would have never chosen to do it on my own but one of my students was too afraid to do it. She and I had talked about how we weren't going to do zip-line the entire trip, but then an opening came available for both of us to try. I asked her if she would do it if I tried, and she said she would. We both were cheered on and supported by the class. We both did it and had a blast over-coming our fears together. I'll never forget that life-changing moment.  It's changed my view of how to be a better teacher and role-model for my students.

Interesting personal fact: I played the trombone for over a decade. Unfortunately, being short prevented me from ever reaching the final position with my hands. I used my foot to reach the seventh position when I first started playing. 

What do you love most about Montessori?  The kids are the best part. I've never met more amazing humans than Montessori kids.

Interests and Hobbies: I love to watch Red's games, travel, and create delicious foods with spices from around the world.  I also make it a habit to try something new, and possibly terrifying, as much as I can. 
CMS Member School Spotlight 


Kennedy Heights Montessori Center is a private school located at 6620 Montgomery Road. As a Montessori school, Kennedy Heights follows the Montessori philosophy of education by encouraging children to try materials and work from every area of the Montessori environment. Kennedy Heights Montessori provides materials suitable for multiple levels of difficulty in the following areas: language, math, science, geography, sensorial, art, practical life, and care of self and the environment. It also offers a peace curriculum that is woven throughout all areas of the classroom. In addition, to educate the whole child, the social and emotional needs of each individual child and group is tended to throughout the day. These needs are met by truly relating to each child, their experiences, and teaching empathy through modeling every step of the way. 

KHMC has two pre-primary classrooms for children aged 3-6. Children can attend a morning or afternoon Montessori class. Full day is an option for 3 and 4 year old children. However, they would spend half day in the Montessori environment and half in our extended day program. The kindergarten age children have a full day program. In addition to extended lessons in math and language, our Kindergarten program focuses in depth in science and cultures from around the world. This year we are happy to offer our long awaited full day toddler program, serving children aged 24 months through 3-4 years. Kennedy Heights Montessori Center strongly believes that with multi-age classrooms the children and teachers can develop a good rapport with each other, and the older children have the ability to help each other and their younger friends along their educational journey. Directly and indirectly, younger students pick up routine, care of self, care of environment, respect for one another and the world around them and more.

CMS Executive Board Members

Kristin Patterson, M.Ed.


Vice President
Meri Fox

Susan Flaspohler, M.Ed.
Membership Secretary
Susan Scheibenzuber
Recording Secretary
Valerie Dyas, M.Ed.