W E D N E S D A Y  W E E K L Y
March 11, 2015
In This Issue

Upcoming Events

March 13
All-Staff Professional Day
No classes.
Pre-registered child-care only.

March 16
Montessori Monday Open House
9:30 a.m.
Tell a friend! 

March 18
Board & Advisory Board Visitation Day

Montessori Play and Learn
10:30 and 11:15 a.m. at Brandywine Library
Learn More

March 19
9-12 Talent Show
9:30 a.m. - Dress Rehearsal
7  p.m. - Concert 

March 23-27
Spring Break
No classes
Pre-registered child-care only.
More Info 

Did you miss the annual meeting?
A recap has been posted in the
section on the WMS website, along with a link to the 2013-14 Annual Report and updated 2013-16 Strategic Plan.
Message from Head of School 
Lisa A. Lalama 


For more of Lisa's writing, check out the Montessori Message blog.


Before our snow days last week, students and staff had one of the most wonderful experiences of the school year - percussionist Tony Vacca's visit to WMS. For several weeks, guest artist Aaron Walker worked with preschool and elementary music classes, teaching the students about African music and culture in preparation for Tony Vacca's residency at WMS. One of the highlights of this experience was a workshop conducted for our staff. This was the most highly attended faculty meeting of the school year! In less than an hour, our staff made music together. They learned their parts, supported others who were in their group and listened for cues from those in other groups. Most had no experience with drumming or bell playing, but 

they jumped right in.


In watching the classes with the children and staff what was obvious was the connection.Tony invited the children (and adults) in, met them where they are, and helped each one succeed. He assessed learning as it happened. He adjusted his lesson based on who was present, their knowledge and skill level. In other words, Tony Vacca is a Montessori teacher. He knows what it means to cooperate, collaborate and help someone succeed. He reminded us all about not only what it means to make music, but what it means to look back at those who came before us and handed us this rich tradition of the arts; he stated that "arts and ornamentation came before spoken language and numeracy." They are the foundation of humanity. The Longwood Foundation knows this and has challenged us to meet them halfway in creating an integrated arts program that will provide these types of experiences for our students throughout each year. You will hear more about this in the coming weeks.

Please join us as we strive to enhance the arts and bring more artists to WMS; begin by putting April 2 on your calendar (this date is tentative but will be confirmed soon) to attend the rescheduled family concert with Tony Vacca.




News & NotesNews
Camp Montessori
Spring Break & Camp News

Spring Break 2015

Spring Break Mini-Camps are here! Build a kite or an origami animal, build a LEGO spaceport, learn to do a perfect cartwheel or mix mysterious potions in the laboratory!

Register by emailing Cass Winner, Director of Extended Day Programs, or visiting www.wmsde.org/springbreakFull- or half-day childcare is also available Monday through Friday. The theme in the elementary group is Time Travel... so buckle in and go for a ride!

Summer Camp

Camp Montessori's multi-week early registration discount expires on April 1, so don't forget to register for camp! The coupon code for the discount is EARLY2015. Note:The system only takes the discount off the primary tuition for each week, so if you choose add-on options, Cass will take the discount off the rest.

If you prefer to use a paper form to register, they are available on at www.wmsde.org/camp and in hard copy from Cass.

Evan Bastianelli Running
Running Club - Starting Next Week!

The WMS Running Club will practice on Tuesdays and Thursdays from 3:15 to 4:15 p.m. starting March 17, and will continue until the Delaware Marathon "Run 1, 4 Fun" 1.2 Mile Fun Run/Walk on Saturday, May 9. The club is open to students in grades 1 through 6 (though students of all ages are welcome to join the fun run during marathon weekend - stay tuned for details). Registration forms will be available at the Front Desk or through Adrianna.

The goal of WMS's Running Club is to help children stay physically active and improve their health and fitness through running. The club provides a supportive environment for runners of all ability levels. Students will be working on their long distance running, pacing, sprinting and relays.They will also gain an understanding of how to warm up and stretch. With each run, students will improve their cardiovascular and muscular endurance. No experience is necessary!
"Play and Learn" at the Brandywine Libraryplayandlearn

WMS has partnered with the Brandywine Library to offer Montessori "Play and Learn" to the community.

Led by Director of Early Childhood Education Sarah Williams and Admissions Officer Theresa Conaty, the monthly class reinforces the learning partnership between parents and their young children. Parents and children have the opportunity to learn about the Montessori Method in a comfortable, classroom-like environment with activities including circle time, songs, movement and story time.

Please tell a friend to join us for our next class on March 18 or April 8 starting at 10:30 or 11:15 a.m.!


Odyssey of the Mind Teams Compete in River Regional Tournament

Congratulations to all five WMS Odyssey of the Mind teams on their great performances at Saturday's River Regional tournament! WMS's "Runaway 'Train'" Division I team won first place and will advance to the 35th annual Delaware Odyssey of the Mind State Tournament at the University of Delaware on March 28.

Check out next week's issue of the Wednesday Weekly to learn more about WMS's Odyssey of the Mind program and all of the hard work that goes into preparing for this challenging competition.
Auction News


Dear WMS Families, 


Our annual auction gala, Bidding on the Bayou, is a little over a month away on April 18. It will be a great evening of blues and banter over the bidding on a wide variety of auction items. Mark your calendars now - tickets will be available in mid-March. Whether you are new to Wilmington Montessori School or you've never missed the gala, we hope that you will be able to join us this year and support WMS. 

Along with attending the auction, there is also another way to show your support - 
donate an item to the auction! Can't think of anything to donate, you say? Here are some ideas that might make donating easier than you think.

Themed gift baskets: 

  • Examples include wine, coffee, fitness, movie night, Mother's Day, Father's Day, spa, eco-chic, kitchen, grilling...the possibilities are endless! Let your creative side shine
  • Tickets to the spa or theater; tickets to a sporting or music event; or a weekend stay at your vacation home are just a few of the experiences that are popular auction items. 
  • Are you a great cook, a masseuse, music teacher, carpenter or tennis coach? Do you have a special skill that you could offer as an auction item? 

    If you would like to donate an item or have an idea that you would like to explore, contact Stephanie Simms or Lori Oberly of the auction committee!

  • Looking forward to hearing from you!

    Auction Chair Stephanie Simms & The 2015 WMS Auction Committee

    Annual Fund v. Comprehensive Campaign: What's the difference?
     by Joan Beatson, Director of Development
    Joan Beatson, Director of Development

    By now you are probably aware that WMS is running a three-year comprehensive campaign -  The Marie M. Dugan Fund for the Future - to raise funds associated with the cost of implementing the school's 2013-2016 Strategic Plan. What you may not understand is how this comprehensive campaign differs from the annual fund that our community supports each year.


    The comprehensive campaign began with a so-called silent phase - a period during which gifts were solicited from local foundations, major donors and the board of directors. These funds are responsible for a lot of the changes that have taken place recently at WMS - the iPads in the classrooms, the new toddler playground, the new STEAM Maker Studios and increased marketing efforts to reach out into our community.

    This year, many of you have given generously to the 2014-2015 Annual Fund. Thank you! While the comprehensive campaign supports long-term strategic initiatives, donations to the annual fund support the day-to-day operations of the school such as purchasing classroom supplies, building maintenance and staff salaries. Annual fund gifts are renewed year after year, but gifts to the Marie M. Dugan Fund are a one-time donation and can be paid over three years.


    Now we will be looking to our extended WMS community for support. We will keep you posted on our progress...stay tuned!

    This is Part 2 of a three-part series on development at WMS. To learn more about how you can support our Mission and Strategic Plan, contact Joan at [email protected].
    Co-op Cornerco-op

    Auction Opportunities

    The annual school auction is the biggest fundraiser of the year and one in which everyone can be involved - the more the merrier!

    This year's auction will be held on Saturday, April 18 here at WMS. How can you help with this important event and also earn Co-op hours? That's an easy question to answer. Support is needed with two tasks in particular:

    1. Decorating - Help is needed with simple decorating and set up work in the days leading up to the auction. Guidance and companionship will be provided, all you need to bring is a willingness to chip in. People power would be most helpful on Thursday, April 16 and Friday, April 17 throughout the day and evening.

    2. Baker's Brigade - Would you be willing to prepare special treats for the auction, with the event's theme in mind? Recipes and requests will be provided. 


    Stagehands Needed

    WMS music teacher Heather Wadler is looking for assistance with the 9-12 musical. No special skills required. All that is needed is a willingness to help with any or all of the following tasks: gathering props and costumes, preparing the stage/sets, designing/creating the program and running errands. Heather will be there to guide you every step of the way. The spring musical is set for Thursday, May 28. Parents with children at any level are welcome to join in the fun.


    Please email [email protected] if you would be interested in volunteering for any of these opportunities.


    Today's LearnersLearner
    Amazing Affinities in the Elementary Maker Studio
    by STEAM Coach Paula Sharpe

    In February, the WMS Elementary Maker Studio opened to its first students. Elementary students focused on the technology initiative this fall while early childhood students explored their own Maker Studios; now students in our 5-7, 6-9 and 9-12 classes are eager to explore STEAM concepts.

    During our first few classes, we spent time reviewing our Maker Studio rules, which are "Have fun," "Collaborate," "Be safe" and "Don't quit." Our first work in this space has been to explore our personal affinities by reading about famous scientists and artists and their interests when they were young. We also discussed the theory of multiple intelligences from
    Howard Gardner. It's important for children to know what their strengths are and what important gifts each WMS child brings to this space, their classrooms and our world. Learning your affinities is important ever changing work for humans!  One great aspect of a Montessori children is they know who they are and they are comfortable sharing those talents with their classmates and teachers. Check out Lisa's blog for more on this topic.

    Elementary STEAM Gardner

    Pablo Casals, a famous Catatonia cellist, felt it was important for the world to teach each child that they are marvels. In the Maker Studios we want each child to come into this space with a willingness to try new experiences, and bring their own marvelous talents to each new lesson and learning challenges. Please come and check out our all Amazing Affinities Portraits on the bulletin board outside Room 30.

    "Each second we live is a new and unique moment of the universe, a moment that will never be again and what do we teach our children? We teach them that two and two make four, and that Paris is the capital of France. When will we also teach them what they are? We should say to each of them: Do you know what you are? You are a marvel. You are unique. In all the years that have passed, there has never been another child like you. Your legs, your arms, your clever fingers, the way you move. You may become a Shakespeare, a Michaelangelo, a Beethoven. You have the capacity for anything. Yes, you are a marvel. And when you grow up, can you then harm another who is, like you, a marvel? You must work, we must all work, to make the world worthy of its children." 

    Pablo Casals


    Tomorrow's LeadersLeaders
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    We look forward to hearing from you!

    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.  

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