Wednesday Weekly
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September 4, 2013
Marie's Message    
Weekly news and notes from Head of School Marie Dugan 
First Day of School Bubbles

50th Anniversary School Year  


It is my great pleasure to welcome you and your entire family to this historic year for our school.  


Marie Dugan, Interim Head of School

I look back with pride, great joy and gratitude for the dedication of so many people over the course of these many years. Seven parents were responsible for creating the school, which opened in September 1963 with seven children. The school was incorporated on January 31, 1964. We give thanks to those few parents who learned about Montessori education from a TIME magazine article that featured Nancy McCormick Rambusch, the founder of the American Montessori Society. Nancy and I became close friends and she was my inspiration for eventually becoming the Head of WMS. It has been the joy of my life to be here to support the thousands of families and staff who helped  the school become  one of the most highly recognized Montessori schools in the nation. We are proud of our accreditations with the American Montessori Society(AMS), Middle States Association of School and Colleges (MSA) and the National Association for the Education of Young Children (NAEYC).


Core Values & Strategic Plan

You will hear a lot this year about our Core Values and the newly completed Strategic Plan. Come to the Town Meeting on Tuesday, September 10 at 7 p.m. to join our staff and board members for an evening of information, inspiration and sharing about this special anniversary year and the bright future we are projecting. Become an active part of our strong community by way of our co-op and PTO programs. We are all here for our children. Welcome to the many new families who joined us for the first time this year.


Family Directory 

The family directory will be available on our Parent Portal this week. To login, just go to and enter your information. In most cases, your username will be your last name. If you do not remember your password, please email Noel Dietrich.


Back-to-School/Curriculum Nights

Please check the calendar below for dates for your child(ren)'s curriculum night(s). These are important evenings during which you will meet your child's teachers, learn about the Montessori curriculum and meet other parents in your class.  I look forward to seeing you there!


Have a wonderful week!


Marie's Signature  

Mark Your Calendars
4-6Happy Rosh Hashanah! 
6Coffee for New 9-12 Parents - 8:30 a.m.

Cub Scout Water Ice Social - 3 p.m. in the Great Room - Learn about Scouting and enjoy FREE Rita's Water Ice. All are invited!
9First Day of Home School Enrichment Program - Have a friend who home-schools his or her children? Tell them about our amazing program! Learn more.
10 Separation Anxiety Workshop - 9:15 a.m. - Learn more. 

Town Meeting
 - 7 p.m. Learn more.
12 Back-to-School/Curriculum Night (Toddler/9-12 parents) - 7 p.m. 
Child-care is available for preschool and elementary children, but not toddlers, for $5 each. Contact [email protected] for more information. 
18Back-to-School/Curriculum Night (5-9 parents) - 7 p.m.
Child-care is available for $5 each. Contact [email protected] for more information.  
19Welcome Back/Peace Assembly/Peace Activities - Details TBA
25Back-to-School/Curriculum Night (Preschool parents) - 7 p.m.
Child-care is available for $5 each. Contact [email protected] for more information. 
Board News
townmeetingTown Meeting - Next Tuesday 50th Anniversary Logo


Join the Wilmington Montessori School Board for the first Town Meeting of our 50th anniversary school year! Meet this year's teachers and administration, and learn about WMS's 2013-16 strategic plan and our exciting plans for the future of our school!


The meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, September 10.


Have a question you'd like the Board to address? Submit it using the Board's feedback form. If it isn't answered at the meeting, the Board will respond on the Board Portal or in an upcoming issue of the Wednesday Weekly!


Child-care will be available during the meeting for $5 per child.  Please contact [email protected] or call 302-475-0555 to pre-register. 
Featured New Staff 

Mary Kate Newell - Music Teacher

WMS welcomes Mary Kate Newell to lead our music program.  Mary Kate comes to WMS after just finishing her Ph.D. in Music Education at Temple University. She taught music in schools for more than 10 years to both early childhood and elementary students, and even in a Montessori School! Please stop by and introduce yourself!      

Laurie Orsic - Director of Family Programs and Professional Development

Please join WMS in welcoming back Laurie Orsic to a new role at WMS. With more than 30 years teaching experience, Laurie understands the needs of families and teachers. Laurie will oversee the Parent Co-op Program, family education and professional development at WMS. 


Stay tuned for next week's issue when we will introduce more new members of our WMS community!

Co-op Corner
separationThe WMS Parent Co-op: A 50-year-old tradition

The Wilmington Montessori School Parent Cooperative Program (Co-op) continues a longstanding tradition of parent involvement. When children see their families participating in the life of their school, they learn that their educations matter, that their families value school and that their community grows stronger when everyone lends a hand.


Each family commits to 30 volunteer hours each year of enrollment. There are three ways parents may complete their Parent Co-op hours:  

1. Classroom service

2. School-wide service

3. Attendance at parent education programs


Shoebox Recycling

The Parent Co-op plays an important role in the yearlong planning that takes place during these first weeks of school. We are on the search for people to assist as coordinators and volunteers for a variety of events, such as the Book Fair, the 50th Anniversary Gala, Dads Day, Moms Day, Graduation and so much more. There are also significant contributions that make the school day run more smoothly. These tasks may be completed here at school, from home and in the off-hours, such as photocopying, weekend front desk coverage and baking for a school event, for example. Visit the Co-op Opportunities section of the website or check out the co-op board across from the library or at the top of the Aspen Wing for more information on available jobs.


In what way will you contribute to the WMS community in the 2013-14 school year? We can help you find the best Co-op job for you. Please feel free to email [email protected] or contact Laurie Orsic in the Business Office or Lori Oberly at the Front Desk for more information. 

Two Parent Co-op Jobs Needed in September


Materials/Supplies Organization

Boxes, boxes and more boxes! The Parent Co-op is looking for volunteers to help unpack, sort out and distribute materials/supplies for the academic year. The teachers will greet you with open arms and gratitude! More than one volunteer is needed and staff will be there to assist with the process.


Small Reception Organizing, Setting up and Cleaning up

The Parent Co-op is looking for someone to organize a small reception for a special event for alumni parents and staff event on Thursday, September 26. 


Please contact [email protected] if you are available to volunteer for either of these tasks.

Parent Education
Separation Anxiety Workshop 

Whether your children are experiencing school for the first time or returning from a summer vacation, new transitions and routines may bring anxiety for them - and for you!

Join Liz Madden, Director of Educational Programs, and Theresa Conaty, WMS Admissions Officer and Montessori-trained educator, for an open discussion on understanding and handling separation anxiety.

* Identify strategies to best prepare for transitions and minimize anxiety
* Learn about the normal signs of separation anxiety in young children
* Bring your questions and concerns to the discussion

When: Tuesday, September 10 at 9:15 a.m.
Where: Library

Register Now Button
News & Notes
Give to WMS through the United Way of Delaware


Do you work at DuPont, Bank of America or another Delaware company that participates in a United Way campaign? Did you know that your donation can benefit WMS? 

When you make your United Way gift this year, please enter code number 12795 on your pledge form in the "Specific Care" area. You can also write in WMS and our mailing address.  

Your gift to WMS through United Way of Delaware will directly benefit your children by enhancing our STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics) program, supporting the visual and performing arts, helping us retain and hire talented teachers and staff, and so much more. We thank you for your generosity! 
Paper Retriever Recycling on Campus
Wilmington Montessori School is now accepting paper donations on campus via the Paper Retriever Recycling Program.  The green and yellow bin is located in the second parking spot when you first drive in to the school's lot. You can recycle all of your newspaper, magazines, shopping catalogs, office and school papers and mail in the bin at any time and feel free to encourage friends from outside the school to do the same.  

This is an easy way for you to recycle your paper every week and help us raise money. By recycling paper, not only do you save water and energy, but our school earns money for every pound of paper you help us collect.

Please put all of your magazines, mail, newspapers and office papers in the green and yellow bin in our parking lot, but do not include cardboard or phone books.  Thank you for your continued support of this important fundraising effort. Please add recycling to your errand route and bring your paper by once a week - help your school and the environment! 

The Wednesday Weekly shares WMS news and events that are relevant to the families in our community.  Please send submissions to [email protected] by 4:30 p.m. on the Friday prior to the issue in which you wish to include your information.  Content may be edited for length and style and may be held for a future issue due to space constraints.  For more information, contact Noel Dietrich, Communications Officer.
50th Logo

Our Mission

Wilmington Montessori School is a collaborative learning community rooted in Montessori principles, inspiring the joyful discovery of self and a passion for learning and independent thinking. We empower children to be knowledgeable and responsible contributors to the global community.